05:00PM, Thursday 28 January 2021
Plans to build a 13-storey block of flats in the town centre have been described as ‘excessive and unacceptable’ by a civic group.
The application has been put forward by Sorbon Estates, part of the Shanly Group. The building fronting West Street will provide 108 apartments.
Maidenhead Civic Society has voiced opposition to the plans, which have also attracted criticism from residents on social media, principally because of the structure’s proposed height.
In a comment on the application, chair of the society’s planning group, Martin McNamee, wrote that Maidenhead Civic Society was ‘broadly supportive’ of an earlier application to develop a six-storey block of apartments on the site.
“Regretfully, this application for a larger ground area incorporating Nos 106 to 114 is excessive and unacceptable,” he wrote.
“A 13-storey building comprising 108 flats is of a bulk, height and mass that will completely overshadow West Street.
“[This is] not supported by the RBWM Tall Buildings Study, which suggests a maximum of eight storeys for the south side of West Street.
“It is positioned right on the pavement line and will create a vertical cliff which overshadows the street and will obscure sunlight from the lower floors of West Street Tower.
“West Street will become a canyon,” he wrote.
Mr McNamee added that, while the 102 proposed parking spaces would be welcome, there were concerns about the effect of traffic management and flow on West Street.
Others have praised the proposals, highlighting that the developments would replace currently unattractive sites.
A spokesperson from Sorbon Estates said: “The proposed scheme at the old post office on West Street has been designed to provide a viable town centre regeneration scheme to help transform the High Street and create an appealing street scheme, with attractive landscaping and pedestrian links.”
To comment, email planning@ rbwm.gov.uk quoting reference 20/03508/OUT.