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Bury St Edmunds new leisure centre and service hub plans to be decided next week




Multi-million pound plans for a new leisure centre and service hub in Bury St Edmunds will be decided next week.

The £143.7 million development on West Suffolk Council’s depot, in Olding Road, would replace the town’s 45-year-old leisure centre with a new facility featuring a 10-lane 25 metre pool, splash park and four court sports hall.

The hub, built reusing the steel frame of a depot building, could host council, community and education services, the NHS and employment space for commercial lease.

Artist impression images of what the new public services hub in Bury St Edmunds could look like. Picture by West Suffolk Council/Pick Everard
Artist impression images of what the new public services hub in Bury St Edmunds could look like. Picture by West Suffolk Council/Pick Everard

A multi-storey and surface car parks would provide 1,391 spaces across the site.

Councillors are recommended to approve the West Suffolk Council plans, which include a sports pavilion and outline permission for an early years nursery, at Wednesday’s development control committee.

Cllr John Griffiths, council leader, said it would provide a ‘nationally ground breaking modern facility’ which is cost neutral for the tax-payer and would ‘drive better outcomes for local communities and create new jobs’.

Artist impression images of what the new public services hub in Bury St Edmunds could look like. Picture by West Suffolk Council/Pick Everard
Artist impression images of what the new public services hub in Bury St Edmunds could look like. Picture by West Suffolk Council/Pick Everard

However, concerns were raised about the impact on the nearby athletics track. One resident said there was ‘totally inadequate space for the number of users attending even a minor league event’.

The Bury Society said the plans ‘will generate a significant increase in traffic on the western approach to the town’.

The report said a ‘series of improvement works are proposed to go some way to mitigate the effects’ on the highway network.

On the athletics track, it noted the ‘area currently laid to grasscrete will become part of the remodelled car park, however its use for large athletics meetings/events will not be prohibited’.

Artist impression images of what the new public services hub in Bury St Edmunds could look like. Picture by West Suffolk Council/Pick Everard
Artist impression images of what the new public services hub in Bury St Edmunds could look like. Picture by West Suffolk Council/Pick Everard

Due to coronavirus, a period of five years was suggested for development to start, rather than the usual three years.


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