Published: 15:01, 31 January 2019
| Updated: 15:03, 31 January 2019
A sports park in Folkestone has submitted a bid for a new facilities, to rival those in other Kent towns.
A new running track, changing rooms and spectator seating are among the plans for the Three Hills Sports Park in Folkestone.
The Cheriton Road site is home to various different town sports clubs, and is considered a centre of excellence for cricket and hockey.
The proposals look to develop the area at the rear of the park, currently a grassed field used for dog walking, consisting of two football pitches.
It seeks permissions to create a new eight lane running track as well as facilities for field events. There would also be new pavilion with changing rooms, toilets and a café.
Spectator seating for 156 people would be build into the existing bank, while parking would be to the east of the track with 43 spaces and 123 overspill spaces on the grass for summer events.
In the application's design and access statement, produced by agent Guy Hollaway Architects, it says the proposed facilities will become home to the applicant Folkestone Running Club, who currently share changing provisions at the site: "The limited facilities in Folkestone result in many local athletes travelling to Ashford, Canterbury, Dartford and Bromley to use purpose built athletics track for track times.
"The proposed facilities would house the Folkestone Running Club on a day to day basis and would also be available to other running clubs in the district, the local community and schools."
Designs have been made in consultation with the club and sports park, with guidance from International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and UK Athletics. The literature adds that it is the ambition of the club to eventually hold county and regional competitions.
Guy Hollaway was consulted previously in 2008 to develop the old Cheriton Road Sports Ground, and the clubhouse and sports ground were completed in 2013.
The pavilion changing rooms would be split into separate male and female areas, while seating in the café may also be used for teaching. It adds: "Large sliding glass screens provide views across the track."
The dog walking would be moved to the east of the site, with a low fence to separate it. The track, finished with red rubber, will have two 100m straights. The centre will be grass for field activities, which includes pole vaults, javelin, a water jump, shot put, high jumps, a disc and hammer throw and a double-ended triple and long jump to the south of the track.
The planning document states: "The proposed area for the athletics track is 20690sqm, this will include areas of leveled ground required in order to provide a level track.
"The pavilion is comprised of two converted 40ft shipping containers. The proposed dog walking facility is 6400sqm - a like for like area of the existing walking area."
There will also be a storage unit for athletic apparatus.
A public consultation evening was held last month and garnered mostly positive feedback, but some residents raised concerns about the impact of floodlighting on their homes.
The agents anticipate floodlighting will not be used beyond the park's close at 10pm. Additionally, training for the running club is held bi-weekly and summer events may reduce use of floodlighting. An integral louvre will also be fitted to them.
The floodlighting proposal, prepared by Phillips Lighting, notes that integral louvres fitted to the floodlights to achieve compliance with an E2 zone, for village or suburban areas.
Following consultation, there has been no opposition from both the Highways Agency and Environment Agency.