Anston House plans updated

The council have informed us that the planning application for converting Anston House into flats has been updated.

It looks like this update was made in the light of comments made by local residents and Dyke Road Drive Residents Association regarding the overlooking and loss of privacy caused by the windows and balconies at the rear of the building.

The new drawings feature “translucent window finish to prevent overlooking from upper windows” and “balconies with 1800mm privacy screens to inhibit overlooking”.

Please take a moment to look at the plans here and, if necessary, add your comments to the council site. You may comment here.

Two things:

One: Should Dyke Road Drive Residents Association make additional comments? Do these changes satisfy our concerns or not? If you’ve an opinion on that, please add it at the bottom of this page.

Two: Please remember, that if you do feel strongly about the plans, comments may be made by any individual affected. The planning committee receives a total of the number of individual complaints. Just because one person in household has commented, that doesn’t stop others from doing so.

7 comments for “Anston House plans updated

  1. May 13, 2014 at 9:11 am

    I’ve had this from Urban Splash. What do people – especially those directly affected by overlooking and light issues – feel about meeting Mark Latham?


    Dear Local Resident

    Anston House – changes to exterior

    I am writing to you regarding the proposed changes to the exterior of Anston House on Preston Road because I am aware that you have written to the Council to express concern about some aspects of the proposals.

    We take residents’ concerns seriously and we are keen to ensure as far as possible that the appearance of the converted building takes account of the views of the local community. So I am contacting you to extend an invitation to meet with the architects and me in order to explain our thinking and discuss some different options for the treatment of the building which we are putting forward in light of local feedback to our original proposals.

    We will be available to meet with any interested residents next Tuesday 20th May at 6.30pm in central Brighton. We will confirm the exact venue shortly but are looking to ensure it is somewhere central and easily accessible.

    I would be grateful if you would respond to this email to let me know if you are intending to come along, and if you are able to make it I look forward to meeting you next week.

    Kind regards

    Mark Latham

    • Elizabeth
      May 16, 2014 at 6:02 pm

      i didn’t get this. I hope to be there

  2. Allan Grainger
    May 13, 2014 at 9:48 am

    I would be interested in going to this meeting on the 20th May

    • May 13, 2014 at 10:57 am

      Hi Allan. I realise I can’t make it as I’ve already got a meeting that evening. It would be great to have a representation there though. Not sure if Jane can make it.

      Hopefully some residents directly behind AH can go – as much to resolve the issues over loss of privacy – as to ask him a few questions about this current deal. As far as I know, Urban Spash are only currently employed on the redevelopment of the Anston House block and don’t have any input into the rest of the site now. I think it would be useful to get a sense of whether this bid is actually going forward with a developer in mind or is this just another ploy to bump up the land value. It would also be useful to know what was really behind the previous joint bid on both plots of land, which Mark Latham would know. That might give us some kind of clue as to what’s in store for the larger site.

      From my point of view, though I’m not objecting personally to the development, those new screens on the rear balcony are just a bit weird. You would still be able to overlook properties below from behind them. If anything they’re slightly creepier for those properties behind on Dyke Road Drive as you wouldn’t be aware of anyone looking down at you. But from their point of view, without those balconies those rear flats are very unappealing commercially. Unless I hear anything different from those down the road, I’m going to comment to that effect. They’re a bit of a dodgy bodge.

  3. Allan Grainger
    May 21, 2014 at 2:23 pm

    The meeting with Mark Latham and designer was interesting. The black glazed tiles are not happening. Instead Urban Splash offered the Planners and the Council glazed off-white and glazed terracotta, both options were presented in a multitude of tones, which he showed us. Mark Latham repeatedly told the audience that none of the samples were going to be the definitive selection, so the exercise was merely to give us an idea of what the finished cladding might look like. It was suggested by Malcolm Dawes of The Brighton Society that a matt tile would be more satisfactory, as it would not have a reflective surface that was constantly changing in the light. Mark Latham told us that in the end it was down to the Planners and the Council to make the final choice, and at present they favoured the terracotta option. When suggested by Mark Latham that Urban Splash were willing to erect small sample structures on sight in order to see what the tiles would look like the Planners and Council where not interested in doing this. Mark Latham told us that the Planners and Council just wanted a quick solution.

    Several people brought up the issue of the balconies and loss of privacy. Mark Latham and the designer showed us a plan drawing with degree angles on it to show how it would be difficult for the occupant of the upper flats to overlook the DRD properties from behind the proposed screens. The general verdict from the floor was that this solution was acceptable.

    With regards to car parking they are proposing to have this at the front and the side of the building. When asked if they were going to have parking at the back of the building they said no.

    When pressed to give us an idea of what might be happening to the rest of the site Mark Latham said that Urban Splash had not been instructed as yet to consider any planning for the rest of the site.

    When ask if the trees at the back/side of AH would stay he gave a resounding yes.

    He seemed to be wanting to get the residents of DRD and the Civic groups onto his wavelength, and although Urban Splash have had what seems to be little understanding of this City/Town they are willing to listen to people who live here. That said, I would further a note of caution, whatever they do to AH will set a precedent for the rest of the site and Preston Road. The Council has an agenda to build high and with density that amounts to cramming. For them it’s not about what is aesthetically pleasing, as we were all aware from the failed proposal last year, it’s about numbers.

    The general exterior refurbishment of AH is acceptable if you are in favour of modern block design.

    Mark Latham said if they get sign off the completion date would be in 18 months.

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