TOWN hall officers have said the council’s own planning application to redevelop a car park into new flats should be given the go-ahead. 

BCP Council has cleared the first hurdle to build 68 flats, a medical and community centre and retail kiosks on Hawkwood Road car park in Boscombe

Case officer Mark Wadsworth, of BCP Council’s planning department, said in a report that the scheme – part of the regeneration of the town – should be given approval by the planning committee. 

If approved, the scheme would mean the loss of 377 parking spaces, as the area would be built over, and just 51 spaces would be left. 

Bournemouth Echo: CGI of the proposalCGI of the proposal (Image: Snug Architects/BCP Council)

Bournemouth residents have written to BCP Council over the loss of car parking spaces, warning it would not be good for businesses and visitors. 

Alan Sibthorpe said: “Imagine building a huge amount of flats with no parking in Hawkwood Road, there will be mayhem.  

“The council idea that people don't have cars and ride bikes is fanciful.” 

Rowan Pestille said the car park “often looks full in summer”, adding: “I don't think the loss of such a large number of parking spaces would be good for the surrounding residents, businesses, and the already struggling high street.” 

Annabel Kenny-Jones added: “When there are events on at the O2 Academy for example or in Kings Park it gets even busier. 

“I know that you may not have the air show anymore, but any event of that kind in the town also needs parking.” 

Bournemouth Echo: Hawkwood Road car parkHawkwood Road car park

Currently the main Hawkwood Road car park contains 389 car parking spaces, while the smaller surface car park on the northern side of Hawkwood Road contains 39 parking spaces. 

Mr Wadsworth said parking available at the Sovereign Centre and Kings Park can accommodate overflow parking in Boscombe’s town centre. 

Included in the plans is the demolition of WHSmith – which is closing down in June – and a new public park named Hawkwood Gardens. 

Mr Wadsworth said the application should be given the green light subject to a number of minor planning conditions and legal agreements. 

BCP Council’s planning committee will meet on Thursday, April 18 to discuss on the plans and ultimately decide on them.