A public meeting about the proposed High Street development is set to take place at the United Reform Church (URC) at 6pm on May 31, 2018.
The meeting has been called to discuss the proposed sale, development and the potential loss of parking.
This parking issue revolves around the fact that only 75 spaces will be provided by Keepmoat in its redevelopment of the site.
At the moment it has been proposed that the public car park located on the High Street, Jackson’s Lane should be sold for high density residential redevelopment. The 500 space car park is fully utilised by staff and visitors to local businesses, of which there are many, and public facilities such as the doctors surgery, the chemist, the Afro Caribbean Association, the Daylight Centre and many other organisations and shops.
The Borough Council of Wellingborough has suggested that additional spaces could be “maintained” by pulling in parking from surrounding locations including the multi storey carpark on Commercial Way.
Simon Toseland, the Wellingborough Chamber President, said: ” Whilst the Chamber supports the principle of development of this site based on the original mix of residential AND employment / commercial buildings with good parking, it would like to point out that when the High Street scheme was originally conceived, Rushden Lakes was not built, no works had commenced on Stanton Cross and Glenvale Park (Wellingborough North) was not consented.
“These three specific developments will heavily impact and influence the town of Wellingborough – now combined with unification, the future landscape for Wellingborough looks completely different – so development of the High Street should now wait until the effects of the above are clearer. Our view is that the project should be ‘moth balled’, the effect of external influences monitored and the project revisited once a clearer picture has evolved.’”
Mr Toseland added: “Furthermore, the Chamber feels that the piecemeal individual sale of other assets in this location should also be suspended for the same reasons – for example, the Former Drill Hall, which occupies a prominent and strategic frontage to the High Street.”
The granting of planning permission does not mean that an asset has to be sold. The Chamber would encourage the BCW to refer the decision on the sale of this property to be considered through further public consultation and then at a full meeting of the Council, rather than a subcommittee.
A petition about the subject has also been published, and can be accessed here.