This brownfield site’s use as a gasworks dates back to 1818 and the days when coal was unloaded from colliers on the beach and hauled up through a tunnel cut in the chalk, parts of which are said to still exist. After gas production on site ceased in 1860 the site was used for gas storage and distribution. For much of this span of time activities on the site went unrecorded leading, as far as redevelopment is concerned, to significant uncertainty and risk of unknown underground obstructions and contamination.The site forms part of the council's strategic site for redevelopment DA2 which includes the Marina.
Now prospective developers St William have launched a public consultation on their landscape-led proposals for the site. St William is a joint venture between National Grid and the Berkeley Group to regenerate redundant gasworks sites across the South of England to deliver new homes and jobs.
EPR Architects are project leaders and landscaping is by Brighton-based Andy Sturgeon Design.
A key feature of the site has been identified as it ability to open up a new green link between the South Downs National Park, the city and the sea.
The site is identified specifically to deliver new homes and employment floorspace, with the potential for ancillary retail.