Plans to demolish a former apartment house and replace it with 28 luxury apartments were refused approval, but only on the chairman’s vote. Cornwall Council’s Central Subdistrict Planning Committee has considered the application for the former Sheldon House for the elderly in Falmouth.
Investin Sheldon Falmouth Developments has applied to demolish the former nursing home on Sea View Road and build 28 two-bedroom apartments. This was the fifth edition of the site’s redevelopment plans that previously included plans for 34 apartments that were rejected.
Read more: A new railway bridge could prevent trespassing on the rails
Council planning officials have recommended approval of the request, but council members are divided over the proposals. One of the main concerns was that there was no provision of affordable housing on-site or of financial contribution to provide affordable homes off-site.
There were also concerns about the project’s size and mass, with nearby residents stating that they felt they would be overlooked, overpowered, and experience a loss of privacy if development continued.
Get the best stories about the things you love most curated by us and delivered to your inbox every day. Choose what you like over here
Cornwall Councilman Laurie Magwan, who has asked for the commission to rule on the application, said he was concerned that this was a “very significant development in Falmouth’s conservation area”. He said that while the plans have been scaled back from previous proposals, there is still concern about it being over-developed for the site.
Cllr Magowan said he had no issues with the proposed design but said it was the scale of development that was causing concern.
The committee heard that no affordable homes would be provided as the feasibility study concluded that it would not be possible to do so.
Committee member Dick Cole said he could not understand how this could be when previous proposals for 34 apartments included a requirement to make a financial contribution to affordable housing.
He said: “This is a development of 28 units in a prominent location and we were told that the feasibility indicated that affordable housing could not be provided. The previous application was 34 units with an off-site contribution of over £1.3 million. So if you build 34 you get 1.3 million pounds but if you build 28 you get nothing? “
Sally Anne Weedon suggested that the plans should be denied authorization because of the design and unreasonably condoning privacy and loss of privacy. It was also agreed to take into account the concerns of the conservation area official regarding the impact on the conservation area.
Mike Thomas said he thought the design was “cool” and said that in a city location it would be “perfect”. However, he said it was not a good fit for the Falmouth location, and added that plans to use the white display were “appalling”.
Jon Vetter said he would be “very reluctant” to support rejecting the plans. He said: “The design is exciting, it deserves any city whether it is Falmouth in the City of London. We can’t pretend we can match everything in Falmouth with the iconic architecture that exists today. We have to do something that reflects the future.”
When a motion refusing permission was put to a vote, the committee voted five in favor and five against. On the refusal of permission to vote for Committee Chairman Alan Jewell.