Plan ‘intu’ decision time

Intu camera protest
Intu camera protest

The controversial intu shopping centre extension has been recommended for planning approval this week.

Development Control committee councillors are due to take a vote tonight on the multi million pound proposal.

The 10,000 sq ft extension would include a two level dining quarter and a five screen ‘boutique’ cinema.

Despite bringing jobs and prosperity to the city, it has sparked objection from some people because part of the development will be on public open space.

On Tuesday 75 people gathered outside intu to stage a protest.

The demonstration was prompted after a city history expert was confronted by centre security guards for taking a picture of the outside of the building.

Henk van Aswegen, director of the City Discovery Centre at Bradwell Abbey, wanted the photo for an exhibition about MK.

Members of campaign group Xplain were so annoyed at the ban that they organised the protest.

Xplain chairman Linda Inoki said many people were already upset after reading the recent Citizen story about intu bosses giving their online support for the planning application as members of the public.

Mr van Aswegen told the protestors: “This is what happens when public space falls into private hands with no consideration for the local community and their democratic wishes.”

Former MK town planner David Lock said: “It’s only 10 weeks since MK Council adopted the Neighbourhood Plan which sets out which areas are for building on and which are not.

“Council officers are already confusing the market and jeopardising public trust by recommending that intu’s aggressive proposals are approved.”

A spokesman for intu said the centre was happy for visitors to take personal photos of family and friends. But for security reasons, other photographers should seek permission from management.