Folkestone Harbour and Seafront Development Company has announced that work will start shortly to build the first 84 homes of the seafront development. Folkestone-based Jenner Contractors Ltd will build this phase at the western end of the site, which received detailed planning permission at the end of 2018.
Design has been undertaken by award winning architects ACME, who have developed detailed proposals that take full advantage of the location overlooking the English Channel to create an outstanding new community in which to live, work and visit. Outline planning for the entire harbour and seafront site, including up to 1000 new homes, was secured in 2015.
The new homes will be close to the Leas Lift and Coastal Park and will feature spectacular views out to sea and along the coast. As well as private gardens the development will include shingle gardens that lead to the Boardwalk and to the beach beyond, and a new piazza will be created at the base of the Leas Lift.
Major improvements have already been made to the public realm, including the renovation and repurposing of the Harbour, railway viaduct and station that were formerly in a very poor state of repair. These have been reimagined as contemporary promenades where increasing numbers of visitors and local residents get together to enjoy good food and drink and listen to live music, all contributing to create a major impact on Folkestone’s visitor economy. Further preparation has included clearing the area of dilapidated buildings and raising ground levels.
Over the course of the development, significant contributions will be made to infrastructure and services in Folkestone, including £ ½ million during this phase towards the restoration of The Leas Lift. The
“Section 106” agreement with Folkestone and Hythe District Council provides for overall contributions of over £7 million to local schools, health and community services, as well as improvements to highways
and road junctions in the town, some of which have already been completed.
Sir Roger De Haan said: “This is an important step in our mission to bring new purpose to one of Folkestone’s most prominent sites. Our careful renovation of the harbour and railway heritage has already succeeded in attracting visitors to Folkestone in greater numbers than at any time in many decades, and now we can turn our attention to reinforcing the town’s reputation as a great place to live.”
Managing Director of Jenner Contractors Martin Sandall said: “Jenner are incredibly proud to be appointed as the construction partner for the first phase of the prestigious Folkestone seafront development. As a locally based business, having been established in Folkestone 145 years ago, the strength of the relationships we have developed with our known and trusted supply chain will be of paramount importance to the success of the project, and we are delighted with the opportunity this will generate for them.
Director of ACME Friedrich Ludewig said: “We have worked on the regeneration of Folkestone Harbour for the last four years, starting with the masterplan, new boardwalk, the Harbour Station and the viaduct. We are delighted that the first new buildings on the waterfront in a generation are commencing on site. The masterplan seeks to define buildings that are firmly rooted in the architectural history of Folkestone, celebrate the amazing views and create an active and open shingle beach for all. The new houses will contribute to create a vibrant place for residents and visitors to enjoy, reconnect the seafront to the town, and put the harbour back at the heart of Folkestone.”
Leader of Folkestone and Hythe District Council David Monk said: “Sir Roger has persevered with this development which will bring vibrancy to the harbour and seafront and make a big difference to Folkestone. The delivery of these new homes will provide a significant benefit and positive impact to the local area and the investment will be instrumental in continuing Folkestone’s growth and regeneration.”