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Reasons to reject 2,000-home Sandleford development highlighted

West Berkshire Council officers list eight reasons to refuse planning permission

Chris Ord

Reporter:

Chris Ord

Contact:

01635 886639

Sandleford

WEST Berkshire Council’s highways department has laid out eight reasons why plans to build 2,000 homes at Sandleford should be rejected.

Highways officers state that the development would have a “severe impact” on the district’s roads and junctions, which the proposals fail to mitigate against.

The updated reasons to reject the application have grown from the six originally listed in December, when the council revealed the plans had been recommended for refusal.

The news came as discussions between the local authority and developer Bloor Homes seemingly reached an impasse, with the two parties unable to come to an agreement on a number of key issues.

In the new document, highways development control leader Paul Goddard says the application fails to provide an appropriate access strategy for additional pedestrian and cycle links in order to reduce the traffic impact on locations such as the A343 Andover Road, Monks Lane, Essex Street and A339.

Mr Goddard also states the application fails to provide off-site mitigation measures to accommodate the impact of the development on a number of major junctions, including the Kings Road/Bear Lane roundabout, the Burger King roundabout and the Pinchington Lane/Monks Lane roundabout.

Both issues, Mr Goddard says, would have a severe impact on the road network.

Further reasons include insufficient information to reduce the impact on the A34/A343 junctions and a failure to provide appropriate mitigation measures to accommodate pedestrians, cyclists and public transport in West Berkshire.

The document also contains grounds for refusal from Hampshire County Council, which states the development would create “significant” vehicle movements which “could not be accommodated adequately on the existing transport network in Hampshire”.

The updated grounds for refusal have been added to Mr Goddard’s comments in December, when he wrote: “The proposed mitigation continues to be insufficient in a number of ways, as it does not reduce traffic queues at some key junctions.

“In fact, in some cases it makes them longer, consistently narrow traffic lanes, detriment to pedestrians and cyclists and, in some instances, what is being proposed is undeliverable and is contrary to plans being pursued by the highway authority.”

Mr Goddard concludes: “We are therefore quite ready to refuse the planning application.”

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