Andium Homes has urged islanders to wait and see before criticising its newest addition to the St. Clement skyline amid claims of 'ghettoisation' from a previous Housing Minister.
The rise of the fourth and final part of the Le Squez redevelopment along the eastern edge of FB Fields has attracted widespread criticism on social media, led by former Housing Minister Terry Le Main, who dug the first turf of the initial phase 15 years ago.
Mr Le Main said: "I am terribly disappointed with what is being built there. I started the scheme off and it was never supposed to be like this.
"We couldn’t wait to demolish the old-style developments like Nicholson Park and Elysée Estate because people living on top of one another like that just causes all sorts of problems.
"I know that there are blocks in town which have a great community spirit but we shouldn’t be returning to that design if we don’t have to. This is not Jersey and the feedback I’ve received is that most people agree."
But Andium has called for patience, conceding that, with the current cranes, scaffold and grey colour, the buildings do look imposing.
“We have a great respect for Terry but I’d just urge him, and others who don’t like how things look now, to wait until everything is finished,’ said Mike Porter, Executive Lead of Operations at Andium Homes.
“When everything is finished, the scaffold is down and the walls are painted, we expect that Islanders will see something different: well-designed homes with plenty of green, open spaces, with a flow of traffic that is much better than it is at the moment.
“I hope our track record of successful developments will help people to trust us.”
Pictured: How the development looks with a year to go.
The development, centred around two distinct blocks, each overlooking Its own green square with parking underneath, comprises 17 one-bedroom, 42 two-bedroom and 92 three-bedroom flats, all for rental by Islanders coming through the Housing Gateway.
There is also a ten-unit block which will be used by Health and Community Services. The project should be finished by July next year.
Le Squez Road will also be closed to through traffic and there will be a new circular flow for parents picking up and dropping off at nearby Samarès School.
“This scheme is nothing like the housing estates of old,” assured Mr Porter.
Pictured: An artist’s impression of the finished development, as viewed from the FB Fields.
He continued: “Not only are the homes built to high quality, including the highest standards of thermal efficiency, but they are also designed to capture as much natural warmth and sunlight as possible.
"Cars will be mostly hidden and the units will give parents the opportunity to view the open spaces below.
“Yes, it might all look a bit scary now, but please bear with us.”
Pictured: Another artist’s impression, this time of the green spaces with parking underneath.
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