Contamination and cars are among problems for proposed Bury St Edmunds housing development
Residents shared their thoughts about plans for more than 200 new homes on a delapidated site in central Bury St Edmunds this week.
Developers Pigeon are compiling an outline planning application for 68 houses and 136 flats, as well as an open space area and a 60-bed care home, on the former industrial site in Tayfen Road.
During a public exhibition at the Quaker Meeting House on Monday, residents were able to view and comment on the initial plans.
While many were in favour of redeveloping the derelict patch, which includes the gas works site owned by National Grid, concerns were raised about possible industrial contamination.
One Bury resident said: “It may be a contaminated site on your doorstep. We need soil samples from across the site before any houses are built.”
Another concern was the development’s position on a flood plain, which one visitor believed could increase the risk of flooding in the area.
Questions about access into the cul de sac and parking within it were also raised, with one resident saying the area was ‘already congested’.
Cllr David Nettleton, St Edmundsbury borough councillor for Risbygate ward, said: “The concern is that we don’t want to see the most lucrative and profitable bit, the first phase, coming forward without phase two being there. We have always said we don’t want a piecemeal development.
“I would like to get a really great scheme because that land needs developing. They have the embryo of a good estate, but it is not complete.
“If anyone who wants to develop land there I am all for it, but it needs to be done right. We don’t want further expenditure.”
Addressing the potential parking issues, Cllr Nettleon said it should ‘not be an afterthought’ to avoid the issues already affecting Tayfen Meadows.
“Pigeon seem keen to work with me to develop a scheme which will exclude the all-day parkers,” he said.
“As it is a cul de sac you have to make sure it is not clogged up with cars.”
Cllr Nettleton added that a project to remove the gasometer will also be undertaken.
A spokeswoman for architects Chetwoods said it hoped the ‘majority of parking’ will be allocated, and surveys completed to assess the extent of contamination on the site had discovered a need for ‘some remediation throughout’.
“This was an exercise for us to see what the local feeling is, and to take comments on board,” she added.
Comments from the exhibition will go to shape the planning application, hoped to be completed this month.
Details can be found at www.tayfenroadbury.co.uk. The deadline for comments is Friday, March 20.