The report was presented by Nadia Houghton.
The Committee agreed to suspend standing orders at 8.22pm to allow the agenda to be completed.
Councillor Polley sought clarification on the difference between the current and previous application. Nadia Houghton answered that the current application now had an s106 attached and there was now no justifiable reason to refuse planning permission. She explained that there was no RAMs payment and the Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) offered as part of an s106 on the previous application and the Planning Inspectorate had dismissed the appeal because of this reason. The Planning Inspectorate had not agreed with officers’ assessment of the proposed development to be a case of overdevelopment and had said that it was not harmful to character. However the s106 was needed to make the development acceptable.
Speaker statements were heard from:
Councillor Little asked whether the contributions on the s106 could be increased. She felt that the amount contributed was minimal and that the community would not be able to benefit from this. She also said that the development would result in parking issues. Nadia Houghton explained that the s106 contributions were not for the developers and that these were for the RAMs implications that related to ecological mitigations from the impact of the development. The other contribution was the TRO to facilitate funding for parking restrictions along the access road and the immediate stretch of Third Avenue near the cul-de-sac. The development’s proposed parking spaces were compliant with the Council’s parking standards so the service would not ask for more than the 16 parking spaces proposed in the application.
The Chair felt that there was not enough parking spaces and that the roads were narrow. He questioned what the process was in regards to the Council’s draft parking standards and where this resulted in potential parking issues around the site’s area. Nadia Houghton answered that each site was considered on its own merits and that the current application had been considered before but had been refused on other reasons that did not include parking spaces. On appeal of the previous application, the Planning Inspectorate had agreed with the Highways Team that a TRO was needed but did not agree that there would be parking issues. She said that the site was 800 metres away from the nearest shops and that the station was 2km away. The parking standards had been met by the Applicant and the service could not reasonably see what else could be done with the parking spaces proposed. Julian Howes added that the draft parking standards may not change in the future as national government was encouraging people to use other modes of transport.
Councillor Watson commented that the proposed plans looked nice and questioned whether there was a demand for 4 bedroom properties. Councillor Polley noted that the oak trees on the site had Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) and questioned whether the construction works would impact on those trees. She asked what plans were in place if the trees were damaged. She also asked who was responsible for the unadopted road. Nadia Houghton answered that the Council’s landscape advisor had confirmed that the proposal would not impact upon the oak trees. She pointed out that condition 7 detailed how the trees and its root systems would be protected. Condition 4 also gave a detailed construction management plan that would protect the trees. Julian Howes said that the Council would not adopt the unadopted road.
Councillor Little questioned whether the proposed properties would have the option to install an electric powerpoint for electric cars. Julian Howes said that developments now had the facility to install an electric power point as the service now requested that a number of parking spaces were made available for electric vehicles.
Councillor Piccolo raised concerns over the unadopted road as it would create issues for people in the future. He felt that the proposal looked cramped and there were many similar properties and sites in the area that was demolishing houses and rebuilding with more homes. He felt that this would change the character of the area. Councillor Polley said that back land development needed to be carefully considered and that the proposal was an overdevelopment on the site. She was concerned on the type of houses proposed on the site and the increased amount of traffic from that site once the development was built.
The Chair proposed the officer’s recommendation to grant planning permission and was seconded by the Vice-Chair.
(Councillor Byrne did not participate in this application due to his declaration of interest.)
FOR: (5) Councillors Tom Kelly (Chair), Steve Liddiard (Vice-Chair), Lee Watson, Abbie Akinbohun and Susan Little.
AGAINST: (2) Councillors Terry Piccolo and Georgette Polley.