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Proposed redevelopment of the Aquarena site

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Aquarena, Worthing - update 4th September 2017

Plans for Key Worthing seafront development take a big step forward

Plans for the £45 million redevelopment of Worthing's former Aquarena has taken a big step forward - after developer Roffey Homes took formal ownership of the seafront site.

Planning permission for the redevelopment of the site to provide 141 homes including a 15-storey tower, a seafront cafe block to include 141 homes and commercial space was granted by Worthing Borough Council earlier this year.

Now the local authority has completed the sale of the site town bosses are hopeful that work can begin in the coming months.

Councillor Dan Humphreys, leader of Worthing Borough Council, said:

“This is a big step forward in what is a major redevelopment for the town.”

“I'm confident that Roffey will soon start work on delivering much-needed new homes including affordable apartments for shared ownership and rent for our residents, as well as creating commercial space and a seafront cafe and public open space which will complement a thriving and vibrant seafront community.”

“It is another example of how we are driving forward economic development in Worthing.”

The transfer of the land was agreed by the council and Roffey Homes at the end of last week. The next step will be the developer erecting hoardings around the site.

The deal does mean that temporary parking at Aquarena, used mainly by those using the neighbouring Splashpoint Leisure Centre, has now stopped.

South Downs Leisure Trust, which operates the centre, is reminding motorists that discounted parking in Beach House Grounds is still available. Visitors can also access Splashpoint via the 700 or Pulse bus services while there is plenty of cycle parking in the area.

The council is also taking steps to provide a new public car park on the disused tennis courts accessed via Lyndhurst Road.

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Photos (artist's impressions) of the Aquarena Redevelopment - images copyright © Roffey Homes Ltd

Aquarena Redevelopment - image copyright Roffey Homes Ltd - Oct 2016 - photo 1

Aquarena Redevelopment - image copyright Roffey Homes Ltd - Oct 2016 - photo 2

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Aquarena, Worthing - update 2nd March 2017

The Secretary of State has decided that Worthing Borough Council can proceed to grant planning permission for the redevelopment of the Aquarena site.

The redevelopment of the site represents a significant investment, equating to millions of pounds, transforming this derelict site into a thriving community of homes, businesses and leisure opportunities.

Following detailed consideration, the Secretary of State is content that the matter should be dealt with by the Borough Council, without his intervention. The Borough Council will now proceed to grant planning permission following the completion of a legal agreement securing 42 affordable apartments - providing both social rent and shared ownership apartments.

Councillor Bryan Turner, Worthing Borough Council's Executive Member for Regeneration, says:

“I am delighted that the Secretary of State has decided not to intervene in the determination of application for the redevelopment of the Aquarena site. This decision is fully in line with the Government's Localism agenda which seeks to ensure that planning decisions are made at the local level and to only intervene where there are planning issues of more than local importance.

“The Council will now proceed to issue the planning permission and hopes to complete the sale of the site as soon as possible to enable this important regeneration scheme to be built.”

Please use the link below to view the 2016 planning application:

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Aquarena, Worthing - update 20th January 2017

At last night's Planning Committee (19th January 2017) the recommendation to delegate the decision to Officers to secure a legal agreement (to ensure the delivery of 42 affordable apartments) was approved subject to a number of conditions. The vote was 6 in favour and one against the recommendation.

The Committee was also advised that the Secretary of State had received a request to call in the application and the National Planning Case Unit had indicated that,

In the event that your Council is minded to approve the application, following committee this evening, we will then consider the request along with any other issues raised by the application against the call-in policy set out in the Ministerial Statement of 26th October 2012.

The above Ministerial Statement states that:

The Secretary of State will, in general, only consider the use of his call-in powers if planning issues of more than local importance are involved. Such cases may include, for example, those which in his opinion:

  • may conflict with national policies on important matters;
  • may have significant long-term impact on economic growth and meeting housing needs across a wider area than a single local authority;
  • could have significant effects beyond their immediate locality;
  • give rise to substantial cross-boundary or national controversy;
  • raise significant architectural and urban design issues; or
  • may involve the interests of national security or of foreign Governments.

However, each case will continue to be considered on its individual merits.

The Council will now continue to negotiate the terms of the legal agreement but will delay issuing any formal planning decision pending a potential call in and we await the decision of the Secretary of State.

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Aquarena, Worthing - update December 2016

Planning Committee - 19th January 2017

In mid-January the existing Aquarena site, one of Worthing most prominent redevelopment opportunities, will be discussed by Worthing Borough Council's Planning Committee.

Cllr Kevin Jenkins, Chair of Worthing Borough Council's Planning Committee, commented:

“I have agreed to arrange a special Planning Committee to consider the revised planning application for the redevelopment of the Aquarena site. The meeting will be held at the Assembly Hall on the 19th January 2017 starting at 6:30 pm.”

“Given the high level of public interest in the planning application I have also agreed to extend the public speaking arrangements. The number of speakers allowed will be increased to 10 (5 for and 5 against) and those registered to speak will be chosen via a ballot system. Each person will be given a unique number and on 16th January 2017 the names of the registered speakers and some reserves will be selected at random.”

Anyone wishing to speak needs to register by 12 noon on Monday 16th January 2017:

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Aquarena, Worthing - update October 2016

Brighton Road, Worthing, West Sussex

Aquarena

The Council has entered into a contract to sell the existing Aquarena site to Roffey Homes subject to the grant of planning permission.

On the 24th October 2016 the Council received the revised planning application for the redevelopment of the former Aquarena site. The application is currently being checked and if a valid application will be registered and a comprehensive public consultation exercise will shortly commence. Neighbour notification letters will be sent out, site notices displayed and a newspaper advertisement will appear in the Herald newspaper. The plans will also be available in due course on the Council's Public Access web pages.

This revised application (reference AWDM/1633/16) follows the refusal of planning permission for a previous scheme incorporating a 21 storey tower on the site (reference AWDM/1636/14). The main changes to the application are:

  • a reduction in the height of the main tower from 21 to 15 storeys
  • a reduction in the the number of residential apartments from 147 to 141
  • increased setback from Brighton Road
  • removal of the taller 9 storey element on Brighton Road
  • reduction in scale of development on Merton Road
  • a revised design approach, form and materials across the entire scheme
  • an increase in commercial floorspace from 313 sqm to 641 sqm
  • the provision of a new public pavilion/cafe and increase in public open space
  • an increase in residents parking from 150 spaces to 172, an increase in cycle parking, and
  • a reduction in the number of public car parking spaces from 69 spaces to 51

It is anticipated that the revised planning application would be submitted to Worthing Planning Committee early in the New Year.

Please use the link below to view the new 2016 planning application:

See also:

Photos of Aquarena Redevelopment - images copyright © Roffey Homes Ltd

Aquarena Redevelopment - image copyright Roffey Homes Ltd - Oct 2016 - photo 1

Aquarena Redevelopment - image copyright Roffey Homes Ltd - Oct 2016 - photo 2

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Planning Committee meeting decision: 22nd September 2015

At the Planning Committee on the 22nd September 2015 the application for the redevelopment of the site was refused on the grounds that:

  • the proposal represented an overdevelopment of the site
  • the 21 storey tower would harm the setting of Heritage Assets, and
  • the design of the development would not be sympathetic to its local context

The applicant was considering whether to appeal against the decision.

May 2017: The applicants have now withdrawn their appeal against this decision following the approval of AWDM/1633/16.

See also: Aquarena, Worthing - update 2nd March 2017 (above)

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About the 2014/15 application

The application proposes, the erection of 147 residential apartments, including 39 affordable homes and a commercial unit (unspecified use class) within building blocks ranging from 4 to 21 storeys in height incorporating a basement car park comprising 69 public spaces and 150 private spaces plus areas of public and private open space with associated landscaping and access arrangements.

Aquarena Redevelopment - image copyright Roffey Homes Ltd

Aquarena Redevelopment - image copyright © Roffey Homes Ltd

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Photomontages of the 2014/15 proposed scheme

The following high resolution photomontages indicate the proposed scheme from various viewpoints:

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Other plans and supporting info (2014/15)

Further plans and supporting information can be viewed on the public access page of our website:

See also:

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