News from British and Canadian Conservatives

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Folkestone Seafront

This evening new proposals for the redevelopment of the former Rotunda Amusement Park on Folkestone Seafront were presented to Folkestone Town Councillors by Trent Developments and Aukett. These mark a massive improvement on the previous scheme. The buildings will be smaller, similar in height to Marine Crescent, and less dense with clear views and passageways from the road to the sea. There will be 600 flats with underground car parking. The buildings will still be of similar design to those initially proposed, but I believe that the less dense format makes the design much more attractive. There will also be a glass fronted restaurant opposite Marine Crescent.

The view from the Leas will be enhanced by the creation of roof-top terraces for the penthouses. There will also be a leisure element to the proposal, including a 150 room 4 star hotel, 5 screen multiplex and an improved purpose-built nightclub. The leisure section will ajoin the harbour redevelopment site, which is also set to have a leisure element, which may include a marina and a casino, along with flats, cafes, bars and possibly a restoration of the ferry service.

Trent will also build a hardwood boardwalk along the seafront, which will be maintained out of the ground rent on the flats, and will extend the beach between the flats and up to the road. Also, money will be provided with a pedestrian link from the cliff top to the new development. This could be by way of refurbishing and funding the existing lift, or by providing a new lift. The latter is supported by the Folkestone Estate, but would probably lead to the closure of the 1885 lift.

Negotiations are currently taking place between Shepway and the Folkestone Estate for a renewal of the lease, with rumours suggesting that Viscount Folkestone is looking for a way to abandon the water-balanced lift, which I would strongly oppose.

No comments: