Development Land North East of Stone Drive, Shifnal, Shropshire (14/00062/OUT)
Outline application with vehicular access (from Stone Drive and Lloyd Grove) to be determined for mixed residential development, public open space, earthworks, balancing ponds, landscaping, car parking and all ancillary and enabling works; demolition of one dwelling (18 Silvermere Park).
The Principal Planner introduced the application and confirmed that Members had undertaken a site visit the previous day to view the site and assess the impact of the proposal on the surrounding area. He drew Members’ attention to the Schedule of Additional Letters circulated prior to the meeting which detailed comments and a suggested additional condition from Shropshire Council’s Archaeology Officers and two further neighbour objections. He verbally reported that following the circulation of the Schedule of Additional Letters further comments and concerns relating to drainage had been received which had raised similar concerns to those already received and addressed in the report. In addition, he reported and appraised Members on the further comments relating to drainage received from Shifnal Flood Group. He explained that the Section 106 Agreement would include a contribution towards drainage and it was considered that a betterment over the existing drainage arrangements would be achieved. Shifnal Town Council had raised no objections to the proposal.
With reference to the drawings displayed, the Principal Planner explained that the land had been allocated as a housing site in the revised preferred options stage of the Site Allocations and Management of Development Plan (SAMDev) process. He drew Members’ attention to the location, indicative site layout and proposed access and explained that 18 Silvermere Park would be demolished to provide a pedestrian/cycle link.
By virtue of the amendment made to Shropshire Council’s Constitution, as agreed at the meeting of Full Council held on 27 February 2014, Councillor S West, as the local Ward Councillor, made a statement and then left the room, took no part in the debate and did not vote on this item. He had no concerns with regard to the site and acknowledged that it had been included in the revised preferred options stage of SAMDev but expressed serious concerns with regard to the drainage, potential flooding and the inability of the existing drainage to cope with any further development. He further expressed concerns with regard to traffic and considered that a further 250 dwellings would put further pressure on the road network and solutions should be found before any development work commenced.
Mr G Phillips, a local resident, spoke against the proposal in accordance with the Council’s Scheme for Public Speaking at Planning Committees, during which the following points were raised:
· He objected and expressed concerns with regard to the drainage and its ability to cope with further development;
· The problem of stagnant water would be exacerbated by further development and could not be controlled or improved by conditions;
· Problems upstream would be alleviated by the proper repair of the culvert;
· A proper and full investigation of the blockage should be undertaken; and
· The culvert had been blocked since the mid 90s and none of the houses that bordered the mere were responsible for the blockage. The culvert should be repaired rather than installing a new overflow.
Ms K Ventham, the agent, spoke for the proposal in accordance with the Council’s Scheme for Public Speaking at Planning Committees, during which the following points were raised:
· This site had been included throughout the SAMDev process and remained a preferred site;
· They had worked with Planning Officers and undertaken consultation prior to submitting this proposal;
· Amendments had been made to the proposal following consultation;
· They had attended meetings of the Shifnal Flood Group and agreed to make a contribution to alleviate concerns;
· Following discussions with Highways a contribution towards a wider package of improvement works had been agreed; and
· The proposal would meet housing targets.
In response to questions and concerns, the Floods and Water Manager provided clarification on the drainage and disposal of water in the area. He explained that the site currently drained as a Greenfield site and the introduction of attenuation ponds would ensure that less water would flow into Silvermere and a betterment would be achieved as a consequence of the new development. Building over a watercourse would not be permitted.
In response to questions, the Highways Development Control Manager (South) provided clarification on highway issues. She explained that discussions had taken place between the applicant and Shropshire Council prior to the development of a Travel and Movement Strategy for Shifnal, and a petition requesting that adequate Transport Solutions for projected traffic volumes expected in and around Shifnal be developed will be presented to a meeting of Council on the 8 May 2014.
In the ensuing debate Members noted the comments of all speakers and continued to express their concerns relating to the drainage arrangements. Accordingly, it was
That this application be deferred in order that a schematic plan and details can be provided detailing how the drainage and disposal of both surface water and foul water drainage will work and be managed to a satisfactory standard.