Councillor Adrian Gulvin, Portfolio Holder for Resources has issued the below statement:
"At Planning Committee on 29th April, the planning application for Mountbatten House was voted against by all Labour members in a seemingly pre-agreed and concocted plan. The project proposed at Mountbatten House will provide more job opportunities with the creation of a rooftop bar, 3 additional commercial units and construction/installation of pop up containers for shops, kiosks and café outlets in the lower level of the former bus station. This will help to significantly regenerate the area, increase and encourage business and boost the local economy. Not to mention, the new, smart entrance to the Pentagon, which we plan to build as part of the project will make it a more appealing place to shop. This regeneration also comes with structural amendments to the existing building (addition of balconies etc), landscaping and a new public square, which will increase the curb appeal and therefore the usage of the area, but for some reason none of this appealed to Labour members.
Furthermore, as part of this project, property development rights were considered. This showed that 14 affordable units needed to be provided as part of this project but we will deliver an amazing 41 units, both onsite and offsite, as we remain committed to delivering 25% affordable housing in each project we develop. We are going above and beyond to deliver this provision and I am astounded that Labour voted against regenerating Chatham town centre. Shamefully Labour also voted against job creation and also voted against affordable homes last night. Both Councillor Tranter and Councillor Buckwell, specifically, delivered fantastic arguments last night in favour of the project and I was pleased to hear such well reasoned statements from Conservative members of the Planning committee!"