Controversial Brighton Road car park sale set for approval next week
Controversial plans to sell Brighton Road car park next week are set to be approved next week despite more than a thousand objections.
On September 11, Sutton councillors will be asked to rubber stamp a deal that will see the car park sold to offshore engineers SubSea7 for about £3m.
The council’s development control committee has been recommended by planning officers to give SubSea7 planning permission to demolish the 626-space car park, and build a state-of-the-art office block in its place, creating 350 jobs.
Campaigners have said the proposals to lose the car park are against the Site Development Policies for Brighton Road, presented to councillors at a meeting of the full council 18 months ago – 12 months before the sale was agreed.
The report states that any future development of the site “should pay particular regard to retaining car parking provision”.
The SubSea7 offices will have a 90-space car park for its employees, but opponents of the plans believe the council has ignored its own guidelines in order to get the deal done, stating they should have allowed for public provision of some sort.
The council received more than 100 objection letters to its plans, and 45 in support. Ninety-one standard objection letters to the sale stated that “as a commuter reliant upon the Brighton Road Car Park to work in this part of Sutton – the loss of 626 spaces without any public spaces being re-provided would undermine the appeal of working in this location”.
A 267-strong petition from Reed Business Information, based at Quadrant House, was submitted to the council in objection.
And a Centro petition saw 1,034 people object to the plans on the basis that “the car park is a huge asset to the southern quarter of Sutton town centre for existing employees in the locality and rail commuters passing through and is required to maintain established employment opportunities”.
A Sutton Council spokesman said: “The officers report comprehensively addresses all relevant planning considerations including the delivery of mixed use development over the whole of the site.
"The proposed development is a policy-compliant scheme. It will be for the Development Control Committee to decide whether the proposal is acceptable.”
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