A CONTROVERSIAL bid to build a block of flats near Newport’s George Street bridge – previously branded “monstrous” – have been rejected by city councillors for the second time.

Planning committee members voted yesterday against a recommendation to approve the application for 77 flats to be built in a 14-storey building in Coverack Road.

Twenty two letters and emails and a 248-strong petition opposing Messrs Webber & Hill’s proposals were sent to Newport City Council.

Planning permission for the same development was turned down by the authority in 2011 on the grounds that 50 parking spaces was “unacceptable” and that the scale of the building would have an adverse effect on existing residents in nearby streets.

Despite increasing the number of parking spaces to 94, it was still claimed the development would be detrimental.

Victoria ward councillor Majid Rahman told the meeting the plan contravened planning guidance set out in the Newport Unitary Development Plan and the Model Design Guide for Wales.

He added that the flats would be “out of character” with the family homes surrounding it and that it was unsustainable due to the large number of unsold flats already in his ward.

He said: “There’s a potential that Victoria ward will be left with another empty property, but this time of monstrous proportions.”

Councillors were also concerned with the height of the flats, which would have been up to 14 storeys high.