Approval for plans to transform school into ‘affordable homes’ for Stowmarket
Plans by Mid Suffolk District Council to regenerate the former Stowmarket Middle School site into 38 homes to help lower-income househunters received the formal go-ahead this week.
The development, approved by Mid Suffolk’s Development Control Committee last September, will see the site in Walnut Tree Walk – redundant since the closure of the school in summer 2015 – transformed into:
- 6 one bedroom apartments
- 8 two-bedroom flats
- 14 two-bedroom houses
- 8 three-bedroom houses
- 2 four-bedroom houses
The properties offer a mix of affordable housing: to be offered either as shared ownership, or as social or affordable housing, where rent is calculated below the private market rate in order to help households on low to moderate incomes. They are amongst more than 200 homes in Mid Suffolk’s social housing pipeline over the next two years – part of a multi-million pound investment by the council in social housing across the district.
Cllr Julie Flatman, Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said:
“When the county moved to a two-tier education system and the school site became redundant, we realised there was an opportunity to buy it as a brownfield site in order to help meet the town’s pressing need for affordable housing. I’m delighted that we’re now able to breathe new life into this town centre site and provide more people with a place that they are proud to call home.”
Planners issued the formal decision notice yesterday (Wednesday) with contracts due to be awarded for the work over coming weeks.