Ipswich’s Mint Quarter is no longer flavour of the decade(s) February 2016

The Cloisters, the Mint Quarter, call it what you will.
Plans for a massive redevelopment of the area of Ipswich bounded by Upper Brook Street, Carr Street and Tacket Street are now dead as the dodo.
It must be 20 years ago that retail property all around was bought up by NCP for regeneration of the eastern end of the town centre. But the huge national car park company is now setting about selling off some of its assets.
The future of the site is now uncertain but, bearing in mind NCP’s core business, more car parking of the high rise variety, is surely a possibility! Since the demolition of Crown Street’s multi-storey it’s been in shorter supply (and the possible closure of the town’s remaining Park & Ride services isn’t going to help on that front!)
But while the Mint Quarter is no more, happily, there is good news on the development front elsewhere in the town.
The Ipswich Vision, published last year, seems to have inspired developers, builders and businesses in general that Ipswich is on the up.
The Civic Quarter, Westgate Quarter, Education Quarter, Waterfront and more are all an integral part of the town’s regeneration plan. Work is progressing, albeit slowly, to turn the town around after a decade of steady decline.
The planned movement of Archant from its site in Lower Brook Street to newer and more appropriately sized premises on the junction of Princes Street and Portman Road will create new opportunities on the vacant site.
A mixed use development here will link town centre with waterfront, a necessity if the town is to capitalise on the success that can be seen in places alongside the river.
The much criticised retail offering in Ipswich can hopefully be turned around, and we’d encourage developers to look at providing the decent sized units that the big chains actually require.
So while we can wave farewell to the dream that was the Mint Quarter, we can also look forward to the future of Ipswich with some confidence as work on so many other areas begins.
We’ve a lot to be optimistic about!

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Vanessa Penn

About Vanessa Penn

Vanessa Penn was formerly Director of Commercial Agency for Countrywide Commercial, Bradford & Bingley and Douglas Duff part of Erinaceous Plc. Vanessa now runs her own agency Penn Commercial located in Ipswich, Suffolk www.penncommercial.co.uk. Penn Commercial boasts a number of local, regional and national clients and has formed an excellent and loyal client base.
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