Ely college redevelopment appears to be flying under radar, but will have significant impact on city

THERE has been much discussion about the impact on Ely of proposed developments at Croylands and the Cambridge University boat house.

But the proposed major development at Ely College, which will be much more prominent and therefore have a much greater impact on the city, appears to be flying under the radar.

The very essence of Ely is its traditional and rural nature. Yes - we want it big enough to thrive and be vibrant, and this requires appropriate development. This is not the place for large faceless blocks and monolithic buildings in prominent locations.

An application has been submitted for a new block facing Downham Road which is three times as long and nearly twice as high as the Bedford Block, dominated by a huge roof of industrial appearance.

At a late stage in the application process the school has revealed further plans for complete re-development along the Downham Road frontage. The current application will therefore set a precedent for what will follow.

Whilst I’m sure we all welcome improved facilities to support the college’s improving Ofsted ratings, this needs to be done in a style in keeping with Ely’s character.

To place large buildings of this sort adjacent to the main access to Ely will destroy the environment the council has worked hard to achieve.

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