Planning permission for Sutton Way transformation
20 June 2019A new development to transform Sutton Way in Ellesmere Port has reached a significant milestone after the project received planning permission.
Cheshire West and Chester Council, and its housing partner ForHousing, announced plans last year to invest in the redesign of the estate, which includes ten low-rise blocks. The £12.4m project will modernise the appearance and layout of the estate, and also help tackle anti-social behaviour.
Work will get underway in the summer and will continue over three years. Phase one will include work to seven blocks, with phase two taking in the re-design of the remaining three blocks. This includes re-modelling of current buildings, and some sections being removed and replaced with 16 new two bedroom houses.
The project will see extensive refurbishment work on all the blocks, which includes improvements to the external elevations, new doors and windows, landscaping, boundary treatments, secure car parking, CCTV, door entry systems, lighting, improved bin stores and re-decoration of the communal areas.
An important part of the re-development is about the health and wellbeing of residents and helping to address some of the underlying issues around social isolation and mental health. This includes creating opportunities for tenants to come together, develop new skills and even find pathways to employment.
Drop in sessions called “Meet up Mondays” have been introduced, a local history group is to be established, an arts project is due to launch and referrals are being made to Urban Workbench and to Bridge Wellness Gardens.
Henry Terefenko, ForHousing CEO, said: “This is a significant milestone in the regeneration of Sutton Way that will spearhead the area’s transformation and ensure that homes and public spaces meet the needs and aspirations of tenants, who have been closely involved in the development of the plans. ForHousing is delighted to be working in partnership with Cheshire West and Chester Council to support the delivery of the programme, which will improve lives and create a vibrant local community.”
Councillor Richard Beacham, Cabinet Member for Housing, Regeneration and Growth at Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: “New investment in Sutton Way has long been the ambition of the local community and the Council is pleased to be working in partnership with ForHousing to deliver on this ambition.
“The project has been planned in consultation with residents and I hope they are pleased with the final outcome. The community set additional challenges for the project, particularly around improving community cohesion and I am glad that work has begun on this.
“The Council strongly believes that local resident groups can help to tackle social exclusion and mental health issues in communities across Cheshire West, so the Sutton Way project is looking to support the formation of new groups to achieve this too.”
Extensive consultation involving a multi-agency team captured residents’ views to make sure plans address their key issues.
The community interest company We Make Places was appointed to engage with residents and discuss the options, design features and ensure the final proposals met residents’ needs. The views of residents have helped shape Sutton Way’s redesign.
Wider consultation will continue throughout the life of the project.