Hyde housing association is to hold a series of design workshops for people living near the Sackville Hotel site on Hove seafront, starting on Friday (3 June).
The workshops are taking place three months after Hyde withdrew its planning application for 98 homes on the site on the corner of Kingsway and Sackville Gardens.
The £25 million scheme – known as the Sackville Tower – attracted vociferous opposition from neighbours who want a scheme no taller than eight storeys.
Hyde pointed out at the time the pressing need for new homes in Brighton and Hove.
Today (Wednesday 1 June) Hyde development director Tom Shaw said: ““We are holding a series of design workshops for local residents and stakeholders throughout June to ensure the local community is able to get fully involved in the design process from the very beginning.
“Local people have the opportunity to influence the height, look and feel of the proposed development and we would encourage as many people as possible to take part.
“We want to hear the views of the local community and look forward to working collaboratively to produce a design for a scheme that integrates with the Hove seafront and responds appropriately to neighbours.”
The housing association has described the process as pressing the reset button. It wants to start afresh and involve neighbours, including those who objected to its original plans.
Once it has held the design workshops it plans to hold a public exhibition and a public meeting.
But Angelique Henderson, who chairs the Hove Seafront Residents’ Association, said: “Hyde refuses to confirm that they will follow planning guidance for the Sackville Hotel site.
“This guidance was confirmed by Liz Hobden, planning policy manager at Brighton and Hove City Council, at the council’s recent Policy and Resources Committee. She said that they are looking at buildings between six and eight storeys high.
“After talking to as many local residents as possible, the unanimous feedback is that until Hyde accept the local planning guidelines on height, there is no point in discussing any further design elements.
“Any future planning application by Hyde in excess of six to eight storeys will be vigorously opposed.
“We want a development that enhances Hove seafront and the Sackville Gardens conservation area.
“We hope that Hyde will come back with something that future generations and that all local residents can be proud of.”