The report was presented by the Major Applications Manager.
The Chair commented on the podium parking, suggesting that the lower car would go down underground. Officers explained the photo within the presentation was an example of how the podium parking could look. The Chair continued by enquiring as to who was managed parking on the site the Major Applications Manager explain the on-site manager from the management company would be responsible for parking on the site and further explained it would be for residents to use the podium parking with additional visitors parking being provided.
The Chair further enquired as to the football pitches, although they were not part of the application if Members were minded to approve the application whether they include a condition that the field be used for football. The Major Applications Manager explained to Members this had been raised with the applicant, who had explained that the football pitches had last been used 4/5 years ago and at present there was not an interest in using the pitches. He continued to advise that the applicant was happy to work with the Council in the future and if the sports pitches were to be re-used again.
Councillor Byrne commented when the application was last presented to the committee he felt he would support it, now he was not sure. He continued by commenting the application was close to town centre impacting on parking in the area, although he could see the merit of the podium parking. He further enquired if there was any future prospect for development of the football pitches.. The Major Applications Manager advised that it was just the application before Members which they were to make a decision on, however at present there were no plans or live planning applications to redevelop the football team pitches which were protected by the planning policy.
Councillor Fletcher commented on the list of conditions on the recommendation for approval. He further stated the construction of the podium parking was a good idea however he was concerned it may be difficult to fix should something go wrong such as a power cut, and sought as to whether there was somewhere else within the country this car parking system has been used and was working efficiently. The Major Applications Manager referred the Committee to condition 18 within the report which related to the podium parking and confirmed there were other applications for other sites around the country which has used the podium parking system.
The Chair of the Committee stated this was the first time podium parking was to be used within the borough and mentioned it would be interesting to see it up and running in a few months’ time.
During debate the Chair stated he felt it was the right action for the Committee to have deferred this application and he would be interested to visit the site in a few months’ time to see how the development was getting on. Councillor Byrne commented that the application stated sports provision was included however he did not feel that a bowls club represented sports facilities.
The Chair proposed recommendation A of the officer’s recommendation and was seconded by the Vice-Chair.
FOR: (6) Councillor Tom Kelly (Chair), Steve Liddiard (Vice-Chair), Terry Piccolo, Georgette Polley, Mike Fletcher and Lee Watson
AGAINST: (1) Councillor Gary Byrne
The Chair proposed recommendation B of the officer’s recommendation and was seconded by the Vice-Chair. Councillor Watson asked that this also be in consultation with the Chair of the Planning Committee.
FOR: (7) Councillor Tom Kelly (Chair), Steve Liddiard (Vice-Chair), Gary Byrne, Terry Piccolo, Georgette Polley, Mike Fletcher and Lee Watson
The Committee also agreed the following informatives as suggested by the Chair:
1. For the applicant to work with the Council’s leisure and sports officers to encourage use of the sports pitches to the rear of the site to help meet local needs for sports pitches in the Borough with a particular emphasis on the need for football pitches for existing football clubs.
2. For the applicant to provide the Council with the opportunity to revisit the site in 18 months or when occupied to see the development as built out and to see how the podium car parking spaces operate.
(Councillors Halden and Little did not participate in this application due to not present at the June meeting when this application was first presented)