Care home plans slammed by Welwyn Garden City residents

PUBLISHED: 12:37 13 October 2012 | UPDATED: 21:20 15 October 2012

An artist's impression of the care home which could take centre stage on Bericot Way.

An artist's impression of the care home which could take centre stage on Bericot Way.

Archant

CAMPAIGNERS have slammed plans to build a three-storey care home and houses on a WGC green as "out of keeping with the local area".

Residents have been angered by Quantam Care and Herts County Council’s designs for a three-storey 75-bed care home with facilities for disabled youngsters, a 20 person elderly day care centre and independent living facilities on an open space in Bericot Way.

Campaign founder Sandra Surendran said: “It is totally out of keeping with the local area, the design of it will totally overwhelm and homes in the entire area.

“The building is going to be huge. It will be 52ft high, three-storey building which is closer in design to a travel lodge or something like that in a totally residential area – it is out of context.”

A planning application has been lodged with Welwyn Hatfield Council by County Hall

The rest of the land will go on the open market for housing that would fill in the area known locally as Bericot Green.

County Hall has owned the land for 25 years and it was originally earmarked as a site for a possible school but became a green beloved by dog walkers and youngsters.

A council spokesman said: “A new build development at Bericot Way, Welwyn Garden City, is planned to replace the current facilities at both Hyde Valley House and St Michael’s House. Bericot Way is the only viable land available to use that is large enough to replace the services currently provided at these two facilities.

“The rest of the land is to go into the open market for housing although a planning application has yet to be made.

“Quantum Care, with Welwyn Hatfield Council, has made a planning application for the care home and a decision expected by mid-December.”

Councillors from the Panshanger ward are aware of residents concerns and have been monitoring the proposal.

Cllr Roger Trigg said: “The area surrounding the site is three stories in Waterbeach , but it is a big lump of a building.

“You can’t knock in on principal although people walk their dogs there and it is a lovely open piece of green space.

“It is early days but I don’t think the residents are against it in principal, it is the scale.”

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