Proposals for a thousand flats in a development which rises to 28 storeys at Brighton Marina should be refused, planners say.
Phases two and three of the development of the outer harbour are due to be discussed at Brighton and Hove City Council’s Planning Committee next Thursday.
However, because the decision was not made quickly enough, the developer has already been able to appeal to the Planning Inspector.
This means that next week’s decision by councillors will only be used to advise the inspector’s decision.
The Outer Harbour Development Company is asking for full permission for phase two – three buildings between nine and 28 storeys high, with 480 flats and 761 square metres of mixed-use commercial space, including retail and offices and leisure facilities.
The plans include work to the existing harbour structure to create new land, as well as car and cycle parking and landscaping.
The company also wants outline permission for phase three, with 520 flats in six buildings ranging from eight to 19 storeys high and up to 800 square metres of commercial space.
Planning agents Avison Young submitted the application in April 2019, and appealed to the Planning Inspectorate on 17 September.
In the report before the committee, reasons for refusal include “inadequate spacing” between buildings, “lack of definition” between public and private spaces and a “cramped” “homogeneous” development.
“Unacceptable” levels of daylight, sunlight, outlook and privacy for people living there are another issue of concern.
Brighton and Hove Conservation Advisory Group (CAG) is against the project due to the increasing number of flats planned for the site and the impact on nearby listed buildings.
The CAG said: “Brighton Marina is a key site. This scheme is intrusive and will have an overwhelming visual impact on the surrounding area and the Grade I Kemp Town Estate.
“The main issues are the tower and the massing of the adjacent high-level buildings which can be seen from almost all aspects of Lewes Crescent, Arundel Terrace and Sussex Square.”
However, Historic England did not object on heritage grounds, saying the development, while visible, would not cause harm to the Kemp Town Conservation Area.
Brighton and Hove City Council received 81 objections, ten supportive comments and two observations about the scheme.
An objector, whose details were removed on the council’s website said: “I have already had reduced view of the sea from the building of apartments at the Marina.
“This new build will be another eyesore blocking out beautiful sea views. Build houses yes, but keep it low level and at the very least make them look attractive.”
A supporter, whose details were also removed, said: “It will provide much-needed homes and the additional residents in the Marina will contribute greatly to the future of businesses in the local area.
“The additional revenue from council tax and business rates will be a much-needed source of revenue for the city. There will be many new jobs created both in the construction phase and management and maintenance after completion.”
In its design and access statement, architect firm Squire and Partners describes the development as recognising Brighton and Hove’s heritage while creating “contemporary modern architecture in a marine environment”.
The statement said: “The Outer Harbour Development Company Partnership LLP is taking a long term view to ensure that the Outer Harbour Development is a worthy contribution to Brighton whilst being a viable residential development that will provide homes to people living or seeking to live in Brighton.”
The virtual Planning Committee meeting is due to be webcast from 2pm on Thursday 30 September on the city council website.