Student block plans in Northampton set for approval despite noise and nuisance fears from neighbours

The Old Bective Works, Bective Road. The buildings have been ear marked for student accomodation and an underground car park. ENGNNL00120110823183453
The Old Bective Works, Bective Road. The buildings have been ear marked for student accomodation and an underground car park. ENGNNL00120110823183453

Plans to build a 293-flat student accommodation block on the site of a former shoe factory in Northampton are due to be approved next week despite numerous objections.

The proposals by Pelican Real Estate Limited and David Lock Associates are to knock down the Bective Works factory and neighbouring Jezebel House in order to build the new apartment block, which would house up to 331 students.

The building would include a number of “communal areas,” a cafe and a small retail unit accessible from Yelvertoft Road.

But neighbouring residents and businesses have lodged 28 letters of objection against the scheme, complaining the plans provide too few parking places at 34 and would lead to increased noise, nuisance and littering in the area.

Objector Emma Bellamy wrote: “The fact is there will always be some students who have little or no respect the community they temporarily reside in.”

She added: “There seems to be an assumption that due to the design of the building, students will gather inside rather than outside, but this is a very naive view.”

MP for Northampton North, Michael Ellis, has also questioned the need for the scheme, when the University of Northampton is soon set to relocate to a new campus in the Waterside Enterprise Zone.

He said: “This move will shift the focus away form the Kingsthorpe area and make these flats defunct.”

Other issues included the increase in traffic caused by such a build on the already congested Harborough Road.

Two previous applications to build student accommodation on the Bective Works site have been refused in recent years.

A 2014 bid by the same developers for a 320-flat block was turned down by Northampton Borough Council because its proposed 17-metre height was described as “unduly bulky.”

The current application is recommended for approval at the council’s planning board on Tuesday, July 28.

A report by borough council officers set to go before the planning committee states: “The revised scheme has overcome the previously identified issues.”

A decision will be made at the planning committee at 6pm on Tuesday, July 28, in the Jeffrey Room of the Guildhall.