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DEVELOPMENTS MUST BE SYMPATHETIC

The Argus : 22 September 2009
Selma Montford

SIMON FANSHAWE has attacked politicians of all parties in Brighton and Hove for” losing the city’s momentum” as major developments have ground to a halt (The Argus September 17).

He might as well attack politicians all over the country as development has slowed down everywhere due, not to politicians, but to the bankers who caused the credit crunch with their irresponsible lending.

The Brunswick scheme at the Marina was given planning permission, but as the bottom dropped out of the housing market the developer decided it would be foolhardy to proceed with his plans at this time. Presumably politicians were not involved with this decision. It just made good business sense.

The Explore Living scheme at the Marina was quite rightly refused permission as it is designed like a city centre housing estate of the 1960s. The King Alfred, another example of bad planning, died when its funding was withdrawn by bankers due to the credit crunch.

Does Simon Fanshawe consider any development, however inappropriate, should be allowed just to show we are not losing momentum?

Developers need to engage with citizens as well as councillors at an early stage, as is happening with the Royal Alexandra Hospital, after two refusals and a dismissal following a public enquiry. Let us hope that this will result in better planning and more appropriate architecture.

Selma Montford,
Honorary secretary, The Brighton Society