Parking concerns over town centre flat scheme

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A DEVELOPER has been shortlisted for funding to build a three-story block of flats in Market Rasen – but it would mean residents’ vehicles taking up space in an already-busy town centre car park.

The development of 15 one and two-bedroom flats has already been granted planning permission to be built at a former catalogue shop site next to the Rasen Hub community facility in Union Street.

All the developer needs is funding from the government’s Get Britain Building campaign, aimed at bringing forward 
housing developments that stalled because of financial difficulties.

Market Rasen Town Council objected to the plans in 2011 saying the flats would block light from the Rasen Hub.

And now town mayor Steve Bunney is concerned people living in the flats would take up spaces in the free John Street car park, which is right next to the site.

He said: “There’s no off-road car parking involved in this development except for the John Street car park and that’s full enough as it is.

“It does seem very strange to me. In a town where we’ve got free car parking, to build houses that will take up the spaces seems strange. It’s a lack of foresight.”

The planned development, which is in a conservation area, has been shortlisted along with 104 other projects around the country for a share of £570 million. If successful, the scheme must be completed by March 2015.

WLDC head of strategic growth Grant Lockett said: “We’re delighted this development has been shortlisted and are hopeful it will go on to be successful in achieving funding.

“There is an identified need for housing in Market Rasen and we believe this redevelopment will bring huge benefits to the area.”

Homes and Communities Agency chief executive Pat Ritchie said: “We listened to feedback from the sector and reduced the minimum scheme size to 15, and I’m therefore 
especially pleased that 20 smaller projects have come forward.

“These projects must now prove that they can be delivered quickly, provide value for money for the taxpayer and fit with local priorities.

“As well as building much-needed new homes, the work will create or protect jobs, and boost local economies.”