ATC’s Response to CBC Local Plan Consultation

ATC recently contracted a planning consultant to assist in the drafting of representations in response to CBC’s Pre-Submission Local Plan consultation, which closes at 5pm on Thursday 22nd February 2018.

The Town Council’s representations fundamentally OBJECT to:

and require the mitigation of High Street access issues prior to the delivery of:

The full text of ATC’s representations can be viewed here  (submitted responses here) however the summary below has been prepared to assist residents when considering their own representations.

The consultation period closes at 5pm on Thursday 22nd February 2018.

The representations raise issues principally with regard to the following four areas:

  • The soundness of the spatial strategy;
  • Whether the level of further growth directed to Arlesey is compatible with its designation as a Minor Service Centre?
  • Whether the A507 has adequate capacity to serve the proposed growth at Arlesey and adjoining settlements?
  • Whether the proposed allocation site is sound having due regard to the spatial objectives of t he emerging Local Plan?

While the full text of the representations supports all of ATC’s individual comments, the following is a summary of ATC’s views on specific areas of the plan.

Section 5.4 – Spatial Strategy Approach

The Spatial Strategy approach does not address the differences between the various growth areas identified.  The Sustainability Appraisals for many of the allocations identify key issues and potential negative effects which are not mitigated at all in the Spatial Strategy.  The East of Arlesey allocation is included in every alternative scenario which suggests that no alternatives have been considered, despite a number of options having been discarded.  Furthermore, without a clear commitment to essential infrastructure improvements, the strategy is undeliverable within the plan period and, therefore, contrary to national policy.

Proposed changes: Amend the strategy to provide an appropriate balance between growth areas and include clear commitments to essential infrastructure improvements

Policy SA3: East of Arlesey

This allocation fails to meet a number of the aims of the plan including coalescence and sustainability.

Reducing the gap between Arlesey and Fairfield would lead to visual coalescence between the settlements, if not physical coalescence.

The proposed development is described as being “not in close proximity to public transport” in the Growth Options Study (N29) with neither extremity of the allocation being closer than 1.5km from a railway station, and the location of the site means that the A507 will bear the brunt of the increased traffic and there are no planned enhancements to improve the capacity of the A507, a road that is already under strain.

Having regard to all this technical evidence and background studies, Arlesey Town Council has concluded that:

  • There is no evidence that the proposed growth will deliver greater sustainability through improved services, facilities and employment opportunities, leading to reduced travelling and outflows.
  • There is no evidence of adequate existing or committed strategic infrastructure to provide more sustainable development.
  • In view of the content of LP Appendix 4 and the significant discrepancies between the current planning application and the policy MA8 proposals, Arlesey Town Council see little evidence that the policy SA3 proposals will deliver a mixed development with reduced travel requirements.

Rather, the Town Council submit that Allocation Site SA3: East of Arlesey will result in unsustainable growth, leading to visual coalescence with Fairfield Park together with increased traffic congestion and an unacceptable impact on the quality of life for current and future residents of Arlesey and adjoining settlements.  Furthermore, on the Council’s own evidence deliverability of the allocation is low and accessibility is medium at best.  For all these reasons the proposed allocation is considered to be unsound.

Proposed changes: Delete the SA3 allocation and also amend policy SP1 accordingly.

Policy HA1:  Small and Medium Allocations

This representation relates to sites HAS01 and HAS02.  ATC accepts the principle of development of these two sites which will adjoin the MA8 allocation (Arlesey Cross). As such they will represent a logical extension to Arlesey without resulting in unacceptable impacts on the character of the area subject to detailed design, including access and provision of the Eastern Relief Road, which should be completed prior to any development of these sites. Acknowledged capacity constraints in High Street indicate that the principal access should be to the Eastern Relief Road.

Proposed changes:  Sites HAS01 and HAS02 require Additional Policy Requirements: Detail design including access will be required to complement the MA8 Arlesey Cross proposals. Development will not be permitted prior to implementation of approved Eastern Relief Road, with direct access to the Eastern Relief Road or the Arlesey Cross development. Access via High Street will not be permitted.

12.  Employment and Economy

The statement at paragraph 12.1.6 is inconsistent with paragraph 6.5.3 and is not supported by evidence in the CBC Local Area Transport Plan and Transport Modelling, both of which highlight the limited network capacity, particularly on the A507.

Proposed changes: Amend paragraph 12.1.6 to accord with paragraph 6.5.3 and the evidence base, to acknowledge the limited network capacity, particularly on the A507 and acknowledge the additional investment required to secure highway improvements.

14.1  Overview of Transport Network

The statement at paragraph 14.1.1 is inconsistent with paragraph 6.5.3 and is not supported by evidence in the CBC Local Area Transport Plan and Transport Modelling, both of which highlight the limited network capacity, particularly on the A507.

Proposed changes: Amend paragraph 14.1.1 to accord with paragraph 6.5.3 and the evidence base, to acknowledge the limited network capacity, particularly on the A507 and acknowledge the additional investment required to secure highway improvements.

Ends.

Please direct any queries regarding this or any other Town Council matter to our Town Clerk, Susan Foulkes, either by email:  townclerk@arleseytc.co.uk  by telephone 01462 733722 or in writing to the Town Council Office, Arlesey Community Centre, High Street, Arlesey SG15 6SN

 

This entry was posted by Town Clerk on Wednesday, February 21st, 2018 at 2:55 pm and is filed under General. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.