New Leale's Yard plans 'very positive', says Constable

Thu 07 Apr 2022

Proposals from the Channel Islands Co-operative Society finally to develop Leale's Yard have been welcomed by Vale Senior Constable Richard Leale as very positive and well thought-out. A formal application for a £200m scheme to build more than 300 affordable homes, a new supermarket and provide 300 car parking spaces go to Planners today.

An impression of the scheme looking from the Bridge towards Lowlands. Centre is the proposed car park and new Coop supermarket, a new entrance with residential units and, at the back, some industrial units.

Mr Leale, who has no connection with Leale's Yard, attended a presentation of the plans last evening and said afterwards that he was very supportive of them. "They show a careful consideration regarding the use of the site, without trying to cram a large number of buildings on to it. Standing on the Crocq, the roofline of some of the buildings will be just visible, but not in an intrusive way," he said.

The Coop said its significant financial investment will also help to bring wider social and environmental benefits, and help to address the present housing crisis in Guernsey, with much of the development taking place and new homes being available within three years of a planning approval. 

Mr Leale said: "This is a very positive outcome for the use of Leale's Yard. It is a good balance of mainly residential with some commercial, the multi-storey car park is a very good addition, along with the car-free space between and among the buildings creating a pleasant place to live.

"I wish the Co-op every success as they drive these latest exciting proposals through the various planning hoops to finally bring to fruition the development of this large brownfield site providing much needed affordable homes for the people of Guernsey – at the same time helping to bring the life back to the Bridge."

He added that the douzaine had not been involved with the latest set of plans, but had input into previous applications. The major difference was greater spacing between the buildings and a lower density of housing and so was not considered to have been a problem.

Mr Leale added that additional traffic might be a difficulty with 320 dwellings at peak times, especially taken in conjunction with the Kenilworth site. "There is only one entrance and exit to the site at the northern end of the Bridge. While it is out of the Co-op's  hands, there is still talk of traffic lights instead of the roundabout. The southern end will be less busy with the co-op shop no longer being there."

Many benefits
The Coop says development of Leale’s Yard – pictured below – will bring many benefits to the island, including:

  • New energy-efficient, purpose-built homes, equivalent to more than 1% of the Island’s existing housing stock, delivered to meet the Island’s land-use and planning policy.
  • More than £50 million of direct private sector capital investment during construction, and £150 million on local facilities management services after construction.
  • Employment opportunities created both during and after construction, improving economic and social wellbeing.
  • The creation of land and property with a rateable value, generating revenue for the Parishes, the local community, and helping to fund local and municipal services.
  • Generating direct and indirect tax revenue for the States of Guernsey through investment, employment and management.
  • Helping with the future regeneration of The Bridge and St Sampson Harbour areas, through providing parking near to and off The Bridge, improved connectivity, and a clear masterplan for the Leale’s Yard area.
  • Helping Guernsey with healthy lifestyle and nett-zero carbon initiatives with low-energy homes, shared mobility schemes and a dedicated non-vehicle walkway connecting The Bridge to Lowlands Road.

Leale's Yard is more than twice the size of Admiral Park and the Coop says its scheme will provide more parking on the Bridge than is currently publicly available in St Peter Port and 10 times more than presently provided on the Bridge.

Have your say
Parishioners can find out more about the proposals here and take part in a survey on the project here. Please note the closing date of the survey is 5pm BST on Friday 29 April 2022. 

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