London Road Development

Comments posted on the London Road plans

St James Investments own a significant amount of property in the London Road area, most notably Vantage Point and Circus Parade. In July of last year, they presented a proposal for a large redevelopment covering the north end of London Road as far as Richer Sounds and going as far back as New England House. Their development plans included a very large three-storey Tesco superstore, and a car park of around 950 spaces. For more details, see their website.

Another London Road is a group of local residents and shoppers who feel that there is another way to revitalise London Road, and that a large supermarket and car park would be detrimental to the many existing small shops and businesses, and to the already congested roads. We have been gathering the views of local people, and submitted a deputation to the Council in January. We also have a petition with currently over 1,000 signatures. Visit our website for more information, and to sign the petition (you don’t have to pay).

Following their presentation in July, St James Investments were inactive for a while, but since the beginning of the year have been back, speaking to several businesses and stakeholders in the area and expressing an interest in buying the Fire Station on Preston Circus amongst other things.

In the meantime, the Council are working at finalising the Strategic Planning Document for the London Road area. This is a key document, as planning decisions have to be guided by this, and any appeals against a planning decision may be upheld if there are any grounds in the SPD. This document should be publicly released for a final consultation in mid April, and will be well worth a look. We will be encouraging as many people as possible to review this document and contribute to the Council’s plans are for the area over the next ten years.

As for Another London Road, we are working towards using all the ideas people have given us to develop an alternative vision for the area. We’ve had an initial discussion with Pooran Desai from Bioregional Quintain, the developer behind the One Brighton development in the New England Quarter, and architects BBM.

We are also holding a fundraising evening at the Duke of York’s Picturehouse on Tuesday April 21st at 6.30pm. There will be a special showing of the Oscar-winning film Man on Wire, with profits to go towards Another London Road, and we’ll be there with the latest information on what’s going on. Please encourage everyone you know to come along and support our cause!

4 thoughts on “London Road Development

  1. London Road certainly needs developing!! It is a disgrace – totally run-down and unpleasant to walk through – drunks,drug addicts and tramps!

    A New Tesco superstore is just what is needed to spark a regeneration – existing small businesses – what a joke!!?? It is just charity shops and cheap tat!!

    I remember when it had a large Sainsbury’s at the end near the Fire Station and was the town centre for shopping – now it is empty husks and the very worst of the worst – a big developer is needed and nobody want to retain any “local character” except the winos!!


  2. I think it’s pretty widely agreed that London Road needs improving – and crime is a real issue, deterring small traders from moving into the area. But a superstore such as SJI is planning would not help to regenerate London Road – it’s basically an out-of-town mall style proposal which encourages people to drive in, do all their shopping under one roof then drive home again. The same has been found at the Hove Tesco which opened in 2003 and was meant to bring more business to local shops – but the opposite was true.

    There are already four supermarkets on London Road so it’s hard to see how another would draw in the crowds anyway. What’s needed are initiatives that would encourage more people into the street itself. There’s an interesting plan to redevelop the Open Market and turn it into a covered market with space in the middle for special events, which I think could do this. A lot’s been said about the old Co-op building and what could be done with that. And it would be great if the Duke of York Picturehouse could expand into a bigger arts venue. If the Fire Station were for sale, the D of Y have said they’d definitely be interested. Any of those would do a lot to help London Road – without bulldozing half of it and making the traffic even worse than it is!


  3. Well, I think everyone would like to see London Road flourishing again. But the Argus article suggests that there is only one way to do it – by means a huge development. A large Tesco and car park as proposed by St James Investments is not what the area needs. I just hope the economic downturn doesn’t jeopardise projects that would actually help to revitalise the area, like the Open Market development and the Co-op building for example.

    There’s very little real information in the article either – it’s a bit conjectural with the people quoted hedging their bets! Tesco has very deep pockets even in these times. So we’re definitely not planning on standing down and assuming it won’t go ahead.


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