At the meeting on 1st March, it was noted by an observer that the Chairman reminded everyone a total of 37 times, that it was simply” an Outline Planning Application” that the committee were considering. It was not, he said, about relocation of the Council offices.
For your information, some of the speeches from the floor have been posted on this website in the past week. Here is another, from Keith Northover of the Knowle Residents’ Association:
My Association includes a number of very concerned local residents. They are
worried about a number of different aspects of this Planning Application:
- Loss of privacy, for example bungalows overlooked by three storey dwellings.
- Additional traffic on to Knowle Drive which is extremely narrow and is already a danger to pedestrians.
- The loss of the park and much of the gardens which are enjoyed not only by local residents but by visitors and residents from other parts of the town. The evidence forms which were submitted with our application to register the park and gardens as a Town Green prove how popular these areas are.
There are a number of misconceptions which are going about.
- First that the site is a brownfield site. lt isn’t, both the Park and the Streetscene Depot, which is shown in the plans as Zone D and which is used for horticultural purposes, are all greenfield sites within the definition of the NPPF. lf this Depot is no longer to be available to the Gardening Staff are they expected to travel each day from a new depot in, say Honiton, to the EDDC public gardens which are mostly along the coastal strip? This will increase the costs of maintaining these public gardens and will obviously increase EDDC‘s carbon footprint.
- Secondly, I would bring to your attention Planning Application 08/0850 /FUL which involved the positioning of a Portacabin in the Depot for temporary use by Streetscene. Approval was given subject to a time limit of five years, this to end on 6th May 2Ot3 and the area to be restored to its former condition. The reason given for this restriction was (and I quote the Council’s own words) “in the interest of safeguarding the amenities of neighbouring residents”. This was obviously and quite rightly the Council’s own policy. ln view of this policy how can building permanent structures on this site be justified?
- When the neighbouring private properties were built there was a height restriction placed on them, such that only bungalows or chalet bungalows could be constructed. However, the present proposal calls for multi-storey town houses to be placed here. This would be incompatible with the height restriction, and a blight on the current neighbouring properties.
Would you pass this application if it were from a private developer?