10:54am Wednesday 9th May 2012
By Luke Tugby
Daily Echo readers have backed the “marine” design plan for a new £300m biomass power plant in Southampton.
An online ballot on the Daily Echo website revealed the cruise liner inspired design was most liked by the public, with 36 per cent of the vote.
But more than a third of the respondents said they did not like any of the designs.
Residents were given their first views of three new possible designs for the plant at Southampton Docks yesterday.
Those living near the proposal in Shirley and Freemantle gave the Daily Echo their opinion on the designs:
James Marsh, 71, retired, Paynes Road: “I’ve always had a view of the docks here which would be ruined. The height of the plant is still there no matter what it looks like, so it will block that view of cruise ships that people have enjoyed for years.”
Illone Banet, 70, ret-ired, Foundry Lane: “I don’t like the idea of it at all, no matter what it looks like. When they had the fire at the docks the other week we had to close all our windows and doors.
We all fear something similar happening with this.”
Anjli Chotai, 24, shopkeeper, Foundry Lane: “If you look down the road all you see are cranes and containers so it’s a poor view already anyway. The plant has got to go somewhere and I quite like the look of the marine design.”
Brian Cawte, 65, retired, Testwood Road: “No matter what it looks like it’s still a biomass plant.
Yes, these designs do look better, but they won’t make any difference to the way most residents feel.”
Lesley O’Connell, 58, support worker in Foundry Lane: “The marine design could almost be mistaken for a shopping centre. It will probably be built regardless of what we say so it might as well be a nice design like that, which residents have chosen.”
Julian Caeser, 54, musician, Totton: “I was born around here so I have a lot of affection for the area.
These designs are more modern, but they might as well stick Battersea Power Station there because it’s going to cause the same level of pollution no matter how it looks.”
Charlie Aldridge, 57, nurse, Lakelands Drive: “Whatever design an eyesore and residents will still be against it. It makes no difference what it looks like, it’s still going to be doing the same job.”
Margaret Lee, 77, retired, Blighmont Crescent: “We don’t want it here, no matter how it looks.
It’s still going to produce fumes and pollution. We won’t have a clue what we are breathing in.”
Julie Kneller, 54, sales assistant, Testwood Road: “The initial plans were horrendous. These designs definitely look better, but I’m not happy with the location of it at all. It is still going to be a big plant and it would be far too close to residents’ houses.”
Becky Rixon, 21, retail assistant, Foundry Lane: “I’m still concerned by the 100ft-tall chimney.
That’s what we were most worried about and that hasn’t changed in any of the three designs. But if it gets the go ahead, I would prefer to see the marine design.”
Francesca Lambert, 48, full-time carer, Foundry Lane: “My main problem isn’t the aesthetics, it’s the location. And why are we seeing these designs for the first time in the Echo?
Why haven’t Helius come straight to residents to talk to us directly?”
Orlanda Cooper, 35, auction house employee, Foundry Lane: “I wouldn’t choose any of the designs, but even so, the location is still way too close to a residential area. We are already a high risk area for air pollution and this plant will only make things worse.”
Audrey Bieda, 74, retired, Foundry Lane: “The previous plans were a monstrosity. These designs might sway a few people, but it depends on the height of them. If it’s still going to be on the same scale as Millbrook Towers, people won’t be happy no matter how it looks.”
Laura Sargent, 35, childminder, Foundry Lane: “If I had to choose one it would be the marine design, but I would rather it didn’t happen at all. When you are looking after children, the extra pollution this will cause is a major worry.”
Karen Osman, 50, housewife, Testwood Road: “I don’t care what it looks like, I don’t want it. Our garden was completely full with black smoke when the docks had the scrap metal fire and we don’t want that happening again.”
Chris Jenkins, 38, customer assistant, Testwood Road: “These designs still have the 100ft chimney and moving it further away from us won’t displace the fumes that will come our way. All they have done is come up with the same design and painted it different colours, so it won’t change public opinion.”
Josie Mackenzie, 59, housewife, Testwood Road: “We don’t want this here. The designs do look better, but it’s never been about that. It’s about how high it’s going to be and the pollution it will cause here.”
Andrea Hansell, 59, nurse, Foundry Lane: “We are already looking out onto piles of salt and rubbish and cranes.
We don’t need anything more ruining the landscape. You can’t tell from these designs how tall they are and how close they would be to our homes – they are the main issues we have.”
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