3/19/1024/FUL – Recommended for Approval
The Head of Planning and Building Control recommended that in respect of application 3/19/1024/FUL, planning permission be granted subject to a legal agreement and subject to the conditions detailed in the report now submitted.
The Principal Planning Officer, on behalf of the Head of Planning and Building Control, said that the recommendation had been amended to give delegated authority to Officers in respect of the Section 106 legal agreement and conditions. She said that there had been alterations to the technical drawings and two neighbour representations were summarised in the late representations summary.
The Principal Planning Officer detailed the location of this District Plan allocated site, known as Hert3 and located on 9.3 hectares of land to the south of Welwyn Road. She summarised the application for 181 houses and 73 flats on what used to be arable land and said that the principle of development had been established as part of the master planning framework.
The Principal Planning Officer detailed the style of houses and said that a fabric first approach was being proposed. She said that the areas of open space would act as a buffer to woodland. There would be visitor parking and all of the proposed dwellings would have an electric vehicle charging point.
The Principal Planning Officer said that there would be off-site improvements and the application complied with national and local policies and had been recommended for approval. Mr Brown addressed the Committee in support of the application.
Councillor Redfern praised the good design of the proposed development and expressed concerns regarding the lack of Section 106 monies towards health infrastructure. She referred in particular to Wallace House surgery on the Sele Farm Estate and questioned how cyclists and pedestrians could negotiate Welwyn Hill. She asked about the planned cycle route to Hertford North train station and queried whether there would be provision for youth
Councillor Redfern said that the 20 percent tenure of the affordable housing (71 units) was a good improvement. Councillor R Buckmaster referred to the sustainable design toolkit and said that it was not clear how many houses would have solar panels. She asked how many of the proposed dwellings would have electric car charging points and what type of charging points were proposed.
Councillor Beckett praised the fabric first approach and said that he was pleased regarding the inclusion of the photovoltaic cells. He believed that the water usage target should be 90 litres per person per day rather than the proposed 110 litres per person per day.
Councillor Ruffles referred to an acceptance that this land would be developed. He said that more detail was needed in respect of bus service provision and the location of shared cycle and footways and in particular the location of pedestrian access to this site. Councillor Page expressed concerns over the lack of incentive for residents to use buses and the mixed messages this sent in respect of modal shift.
The Service Manager (Development Management) said that Officers approached the local Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) on every major application to see if there were any projects that Section 106 monies could be legitimately allocated to. He confirmed that the sustainable fabric first approach meant that houses had a high degree of insulation as well as some houses having photovoltaic cells. The 40% provision of affordable housing was compliant with policy and this development could not be expected to address the shortfalls in delivery on other sites.
Mr Armstrong from Hertfordshire Highways addressed the Committee in respect of the integration of cycle routes to Hertford North Station and Welwyn Road and how these routes would integrate together. He referred to an integrated transport programme that would continue to Hertford North and Bramfield Road.
Mr Armstrong said that informal crossing points and raised tables at junctions would make for a safer and more pleasant environment. Members were advised that as regards parking, a balance had to be struck between too little parking causing overspill parking and too much parking sending the wrong message and undermining sustainable design principles. He referred to the severe test of traffic impact as detailed in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).
The Principal Planning Officer said that a contribution was proposed towards youth services but this had not been directed towards an existing scheme as no specific projects had been identified at the Sele Community Centre. She said that all of the houses would have an electric car charging point and all of the units would have a garage or car port. She did not believe that the electric car charging points would be of the fast charging type.
The Service Manager (Development Management) said that the proposed car parking complied with current adopted parking policy. The Head of Planning and Building Control said that these standards did need to be reviewed as part of policy LTP4.
Councillor Huggins proposed and Councillor R Buckmaster seconded, a motion that in respect of application 3/19/1024/FUL, the Committee support the recommendation for approval, subject to a legal agreement and subject to the conditions detailed in the report now submitted with delegated authority being given to Officers in respect of the Section 106 legal agreement and conditions.
After being put to the meeting and a vote taken, this motion was declared CARRIED. The Committee supported the recommendation of the Head of Planning and Building Control as now submitted.
RESOLVED – that in respect of application 3/19/1024/FUL, the Committee support the recommendation for approval, subject to a legal agreement and subject to the conditions detailed in the report now submitted, with delegated authority being given to Officers in respect of the Section 106 legal agreement and conditions.
At this point (9:35 pm), it was proposed by Councillor B Deering and seconded by Councillor T Beckett that the Committee pass a resolution that the meeting should continue until 10:30 pm. This was supported.