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Gants Hill could welcome a large supermarket and up to 1,000 homes

14:13 22 January 2013

A map, provided by Redbridge Council, showing an area identifed for retail and housing

A map, provided by Redbridge Council, showing an area identifed for retail and housing

Archant

A large supermarket and as many as 1,000 homes are being eyed up for a neglected piece of land in the heart of Gants Hill.

Three neighbouring and unused units just off Gants Hill roundabout are at the centre of a vision to boost the economic vibrancy of the area.

A consultation has begun asking residents for their views of the proposals.

They form part of the Gants Hill Area Action Plan, the development plan for which was adopted by the council in May 2009.

The 6,000sq m site incorporates Commercial House, which are unused offices; Montrose House; an unused college campus and the now closed Vauxhall car showroom – all between 406-420 Eastern Avenue.

Proposals for the site include a number of retail units, with a major supermarket chain understood to have shown an interest.

Space for parking and between 800-1,000 homes also form part of the vision for the site.

Speaking at Monday’s area committee four meeting in Sinclair House, Woodford Bridge Road, Redbridge – where the plans were discussed – Conservative Cllr Ruth Clark praised the idea.

She said: “The development of the site will be a bonus for Gants Hill and will be an improvement.”

But she added: “I do have concerns with access into this site, whatever will be there.”

Any flats built on the site will be a maximum eight to 10 storeys, with the fronts – facing Eastern Avenue – at three storeys.

The proposed changes include improvements to “create greater and better access and a pedestrian friendly streetscape for the higher volume of shoppers/pedestrians that are likely to be attracted”.

Labour Cllr Gurdial Bhamra said it was important to understand why people choose to shop elsewhere rather than in Gants Hill.

Concerns over parking demands caused by the new site were also raised.

No money has currently been allocated for the planned project.

The six-week consultation, which began earlier this month, runs until February 25.

Representations can be made by emailing ewan.coke@redbridge.gov.uk, or writing to: Gants Hill Development Brief, Planning and Regeneration Service, London Borough of Redbridge, Freepost RSLR–JACE–HSUG, Ilford, IG1 1DD.

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