Thursday, October 20, 2011

Allen's West Development

Public consultation day on the proposals for the Allen's West development.  I'm sad to say that there seemed to be a bit of misinformation being spread by the developers.  The proposal seems to be for over 850 houses and a residential care home or nursing home or extra care facility.  There is an indicative arrangement of housing which doesn't provide for very much play or amenity space - not a lot of communal space or ways to encourage a sense of community.  There's no sign of anything like a community centre and they seem to have convinced Stockton Council officers that it's better to extend an already existing school half a mile or more away than to build a new one which could be the centre of community activity.  On top of that they are claiming that thousands of jobs will be created in the construction and the supply chain, but are saying that the work will take about 20 years to complete the building.  That sounds more like a few hundred jobs lasting 20 years than thousands of jobs at any stage. 
They are also claiming that Stockton will benefit from the New Homes Bonus but I suspect that's exaggerated too - I'm trying to get to the bottom of exactly what can be expected if the development goes ahead over a 20 year time frame.
I worry that the site will be developed by a succession of different builders and we will have problems for years of getting the "unproductive" work done like finishing roads and public open spaces.  We had it on Kingsmead which is a lot smaller development and we don't want those problems on Allen's West. 
Now we just need to wait and see if they take any notice of comments people made or if the same plans go in with the application.

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