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Fear over Waterfoot housing plan for ‘eyesore’
1:28pm Thursday 25th October 2012 in News
PLANS to develop an eyesore in the centre of Waterfoot have led to fears about car parking in the town, and whether housing is suitable for the area.
The former Mytholme House sheltered accommodation complex, in Burnley Road East, has been empty for around five years as it was deemed unsuitable for modern needs. It has become a magnet for vandalism and petty crime, with nearby residents and businesses calling for its demolition.
However, rumoured proposals that the site, along with an adjacent 33-space car park and a disused children’s playground, are to be transformed into affordable housing, by social landlord Green Vale Homes, have been met with concern.
Green Vale has not revealed full details of the plans, but have said they will be “sensitive” to parking issues.
Local window cleaner Ronnie Harvey, said: “Mytholme House has fallen into disrepair and something needs to be done about it, but the car park is essential for the town centre businesses to succeed.
“There is talk of 21 affordable homes going on the site and that it could affect the car park, playground, and bus turning circle, which are all part of the land.
“There was a get-together of the Water-foot Forward group, and others, on Tuesday and everyone was concerned at the lack of information on something that could affect a lot of businesses.”
Coun Jim Pilling, who represents the area, said he did not think a housing devel- opment was suitable for such a central site.
He added: “There are some wonderful buil- dings in the surrounding area, including the Victorian arcade opposite. My ideal solution would be to demolish it and landsc- ape a public area. There are a lot of town centre businesses who rely on the car park next to the site.”
Hilary Brady, Together Housing Group’s head of redevelopment, said: “We are work-ing on plans with the council to redevelop the site and we’ll be consulting the comm-unity and the Waterfoot Forward group on any proposals going forward. Any plans will be sensitive to the parking needs of the local community, local businesses, and with regard to the council’s planning policies.”