Sutton Harbour defends plans to build on Plymouth City Airport
THE former operator of Plymouth airport has defended its plans to build houses, shops and offices on the site in the north of the city.
Lawyers for Sutton Harbour Holdings yesterday launched their case at a planning inquiry in the city centre.
Sutton Harbour has joined Plymouth City Council in opposing an appeal by developers who want to build a new shopping centre next to Derriford Hospital.
Wharfside Regeneration (Devon) has appealed against refusal of planning permission for the 16.5-acre North West Quadrant site at Derriford.
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Sutton Harbour Holdings has published its own masterplan for a massive housing and shopping development at the 113-acre City Airport at Roborough.
The masterplan, drawn up by Plymouth architects AWW, calls for a range of commercial, retail and residential units, including an hotel and food retail store, plus the first part of a proposed park and streets leading to a new town square and high street.
The second phase would include a new primary school, library and community centre, more retail and residential blocks forming the town square and a new pedestrian link to University College Marjon.
Thomas Hill, QC, for Sutton Harbour Holdings, told planning inquiry inspector David Nicholson that if the Wharfside appeal was upheld it would cut off any possibilities of building a district centre at the former airport site.
Witnesses told the inquiry that Wharfside's proposal was inferior to Sutton Harbour's own masterplan for the airport, which was revealed exclusively in The Herald earlier this month.
Planning consultant John Webster said the Wharfside proposals failed to satisfy the needs of the council's area action plan for Derriford and Seaton, which include a large new supermarket.
He was backed up by planning expert Will Edmonds of Montagu Evans
Mr Webster said Wharfside's proposal was for a much smaller store which he did not believe would be viable.
Unlike the Sutton Harbour proposals, Wharfside's plans would not provide adequate pedestrian links across the A386 Tavistock Road.