‘Come to Larne and hear our concerns’ – Triangle is urged

This site of the proposed development at 4 Princes Gardens.  INLT 07-681-CON
This site of the proposed development at 4 Princes Gardens. INLT 07-681-CON

The developer behind controversial plans for a supported living scheme in Larne has been invited to hear local people’s objections first hand.

The Planning Service has indicated it is minded to approve Triangle Housing Association’s proposal to replace the former children’s home at 4 Princes Gardens with a two-storey development, catering for 16 to 21-year-olds who have left care.

The facility would consist of 12 one-bedroom apartments, with further provision for round-the-clock staff. The plans also include car parking facilities, landscaping and access works.

But there has been a raft of objections from local residents, citing a range of concerns including the potential for a rise in anti-social behaviour and noise levels, impact on property values and local businesses, and damage to the character of the area.

Planners have received a total of 34 letters of objection to the plans.

Larne councillors have also voiced their opposition to the proposed location of the facility, stating that other sites in the town would be more suitable.

And the local authority has called on representatives from Triangle to attend its next monthly meeting, where it aims to show the developer the “strength of feeling” against the plans.

At the latest full council meeting, Alderman Roy Beggs called for a community impact assessment to be carried out in relation to the proposed development. The proposal was unanimously resolved by members.

The planning officer said that while she understood people in the area are opposed to the planned facility, she pointed out that the application satisfied the Department’s criteria.

She added that many of the objections were outside the remit of planners.

Despite this, Ald Beggs proposed that the application be deferred to the Planning Management Board for review, which was also unanimously agreed.