Delayed housing plans for surgery car park could be approved

Fairstead Surgery. Picture: Ian Burt

Fairstead Surgery. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: IAN BURT

Plans to build seven homes on a car park that is partially used to access a doctor's surgery could be approved today following a delayed decision.

The plans for the Centre Point car park in King's Lynn's Fairstead area, which is used by patents visiting Fairstead Surgery and its surrounding amenities including two schools, were due to be determined on November 4.

But plans were deferred after councillors raised concern over who owned the land and whether residents would be able to access bins, bikes and their own personal car parking spaces.

Council officers have recommended councillors approve the plans.

According to the agenda for a meeting of West Norfolk Council's planning committee on December 2, the new homes would come with 10 parking spaces of their own and would result in the loss of 14 spaces in the council's public car park, none of which are disabled.

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The land was sold to developers by West Norfolk Council in 2007 after it deemed the car park to be surplus to requirements.

The plans are part of the council's development strategy to provide more than 7,500 new homes through the regeneration of brownfield land.

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As there are fewer than 10 homes being built the developer is under no obligation to make any of them "affordable", according to a representative for Affordable Housing.

The Highways Authority raised no objection to the plans, saying that with the exception of 3pm on weekdays when school children were being collected, the car park would have the capacity to cater for the areas needs with fewer spaces.

Public objections came from people including residents who said they felt the land should have been used to build a new surgery rather than houses, and some who felt the car park was not underused.

A public consultation by Healthwatch Norfolk into the future of the surgery found that the local authority should ensure that access to treatment was not blocked by new developments on the site.

On July 27 it was announced that the Fairstead Surgery was almost certain to close.

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