Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Sidford business park >>> Town Council planning committee unanimously rejects Fords planning application >>> 16/0669/MOUT >>> yet more reports

The Town Council made its views very clear last week about plans for warehousing on the outskirts of Sidford:
Futures Forum: Sidford business park >>> Town Council planning committee unanimously rejects Fords planning application >>> 16/0669/MOUT >>> more reports

This report from today's View from Sidmouth gives a very handy summary:

Sidmouth Town Council say ‘no’ to business park

An artists impression of what the new business park could look like
SIDMOUTH Town Council have announced they are unable to support plans for the Sidmouth Business Park plans, as the proposed development could adversely affect the economic viability of the town centre.
At a planning meeting last week, Sidmouth Town Council’s planning committee recommended a rejection from East Devon District Council for the planning proposals put forward by Ford’s of Sidmouth for a business park in Sidford.
The council were unable to support it on six grounds. 

‘Firstly, The proposed development did not comply with Strategy 26 of the Local Plan because the applicant was proposing two highway access points. Were the application to be granted, members were of the view that only one access point at the southern part of the site should be allowed.’
‘Secondly, the proposed development would exacerbate flooding in an already regularly flooded area. 

'Thirdly, the proposed development would be detrimental to the amenity of residents with an increase in traffic in the vicinity of the site and through the villages of Sidford and Sidbury resulting in additional air pollution, congestion and adversely impacting the residents of surrounding properties.
‘Fourthly, the proposed development would create a significant and detrimental visual impact in the countryside and within an important Are of Outstanding Natural Beauty with an associated detrimental impact on the vital local tourism industry. 

'Fifthly, the proposed development could adversely affect the economic viability of Sidmouth’s Town Centre. 

'And finally, the need for the development had not been proven with the existing employment site at Alexandria Road still having capacity.”
The town council received 11 letter of objection and as of Wednesday, June 15th, EDDC had received 134 letters regarding the site – 133 objectors and one in support.
East Devon District Councillor Marianne Rixson, who spoke at the meeting in her role as a district councillor said the two biggest issues on the site were access and flooding.
Cllr Rixson said: Climate change is already happening – the Environment Agency revised their figures for flooding in April this year. Previously throughout the country the accepted figure was 20% increase in river flow and surface water following heavy rainfall. The new figures are regional – in the south west the increase is enormous – four times the volume for river flow and double the amount for surface water.
“To put flooding in perspective, in December 2014, Devon County Council produced a surface water management document. This estimated the damage from surface water in Sidmouth at £900,000 in the town centre and £3million in the wider Sidmouth-Sidford area. I asked them what the figures were going to be with four times the amount of flow in the river and double the amount of surface water – they couldn’t tell me.
“Where are the new maps from the Environment Agency showing the extent of flooding based on their new climate change predictions? How can any decision be taken without seeing these new maps and without the revised surface water damage figures to Sidmouth-Sidford?
“Then we come to access to this site. We all know there are pinch points in Sidbury. School Street in Sidford is so narrow that lorries regularly drive on the pavement (which is illegal) to pass oncoming cars.
“This site is in the AONB. What will a huge blot on the landscape, including Fords’ storage containers, do to our tourism industry and the vitality of our shops? Funny that their report excluded the view from Trow Hill – this was of course an oversight? Then there is the additional noise and light pollution in a quiet residential area.
“This site will increase the flood risk, has poor access, is in the wrong place and is unnecessary because we have such low levels of unemployment. EDDC’s ambition is to reduce the need for commuting. This will do precisely the opposite as it will make in-commuting essential, thereby worsening congestion, which is already approaching gridlock particularly in high season. A worse place for this development is hard to imagine.”
Sidmouth Town Council say 'no' to business park

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