EXCLUSIVE: Regeneration plans revealed for North Street Quarter in Lewes

Shape of things to come - the North Street Quarter in Lewes.
Shape of things to come - the North Street Quarter in Lewes.

It represents the biggest development Lewes has seen for decades and the Sussex Express can exclusively reveal the finished plans for the North Street Quarter.

Developer Santon North Street and Lewes District Council jointly submitted the planning application today (Friday March 13).

The ambitious scheme includes more than 400 homes and a riverside promenade.

A riverside square would form part of the development, which would be built on the Phoenix Industrial Estate, owned by Santon.

However Lewes Phoenix Rising, a community led group, has previously opposed the Santon scheme and is planning to launch its own planning application for the site.

Leader of Lewes District Council cllr Rob Blackman said: “We want to create a vibrant, mixed use neighbourhood here which is designed to reflect and complement the character and industrial heritage of Lewes, whilst delivering a huge number of benefits to local people on this rather hidden and isolated brownfield site in Lewes.

“We are thrilled to be able to deliver so many affordable homes in the mix – a first for Lewes District - which will not only be earmarked for Lewes people, but also cover the range of family sizes and needs of our local community.”

The North Street Quarter proposals, which are the result of three years of consultation with people in Lewes, include 416 new homes. A total of 40 per cent of them (165) will be affordable.

Proposals include 140,000 square foot of employment space, accommodating 475 full time equivalent jobs, with subsidised rent for creative start up businesses, secured through a Section 106 agreement. This includes 72,000 square foot of light industrial space at Malling Brooks, already under construction.

Construction will create 100 full time jobs, with an emphasis on recruiting local people, and an apprentice scheme.

The regeneration represents £150m investment into Lewes and the South Downs National Park.

The scheme includes tackling contaminated ground on the site and completing the town flood defences.

Project director from Santon North Street Clive Wilding said: “The North Street Quarter will revitalise his sustainable brownfield site, creating a rejuvenated eastern gateway into the town.”

The riverside square will be named Phoenix Wharf and will be linked to Malling Brooks via a foot and cycle bridge over the River Ouse.

A new health centre, with a doctors’ surgery and dentist’s, will be built and will serve 26,000 people.

There will also be a nursery, public exhibition space and public gardens overlooking the river.

Improvements will be made to the Pells Park and Malling recreation ground.

And there will be a covered pay on exit car park for residents and visitors.