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Appendix 1(V7)

Appendix 1(V7)

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Published by Bill Lord
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Published by: Bill Lord on Nov 17, 2011
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Appendix 1OBJECTIONS BY THE GONERBY HILL FOOT RESIDENTS’ GROUPREGARDING SITE REFERENCE GRAH3 FOR DEVELOPMENT.(1) Why we consider greenfield land (Site ref GRAH3) north of Peachwood Close to be unsuitable for the development of 400 houses.
 The key area of concern to residents of Gonerby Hill Foot and surrounding areas isthe increased traffic that will result from this development and the impact of thison an area of the town that is already frequently gridlocked.
(1.1) Highways
The addition of multiple cars from 400 homes will place intolerable strain onStephenson Avenue, Cliffe Road and Hazelwood Drive.
The projected entrance and exit routes to the estate – Beaumont Drive, ApplewoodDrive and Hazelwood Drive – would result in a change in use of side or access roads intomain roads. These roads are not suitable to cope with a large increase in traffic.
On many occasions Cliffe Road is blocked with traffic and buses are unable to pass.
It is projected that the new development would dramatically increase the flow rate of traffic, impacting on safety and increasing the necessity for regular and improved roadmaintenance.
Beaumont Drive is on a steep incline and is dangerous in freezing weather.
Applewood Drive, Beaumont Drive and the north end of Hazelwood Drive are all cul-de-sac developments and not set up to be through roads.
Hazelwood Drive is not wide at the point where it will go onto the new estate and socould not safely provide access to it.
We have been informed that Arnold Avenue may be used as through run for entry tothe estate from Lynden Avenue and Vernon Avenue. This would inevitably bring significantadditional traffic onto a very steep hill and an estate that is inhabited by a large number of families with children. There are also concerns about the ability of emergency services toaccess the area.
The roads and pavements become seriously dangerous in cold weather with sheet icethat takes a long time to go away. This is particularly bad on Orangewood Close, where thereis only single vehicle access, and also on Cherrywood and Hazelwood Roads. No councilclearing takes place on these roads and there is no salt/grit bin.
Parking on both sides of the road in Hazelwood at the point where it narrows prior toCherrywood Road at present hinders access by ambulance or fire engine, and on occasions isonly just passable by car.
Visibility on the corner of Cherrywood Road into Hazelwood Road is currently asafety issue due to the angle of the road, bushes and parked cars.
The additional traffic from 400 new houses in this area will make Gonerby Road evenmore of a pinchpoint for traffic entering Grantham. At present whenever there is an accidentor roadworks on the A1 the traffic is diverted to Gonerby Road, making the town completelygridlocked. These traffic problems already significantly impact on local businesses as peopledecide to shop elsewhere and visit more accessible out of town restaurants and pubs. It is not
clear from the GAAP whether a relief road bypass will be in place prior to the building of anew estate.
(1.1.13) Planning policy guidance 13 – point 5.3
states that “
local authorities should accommodate housing principally within existing urban areas, planning for increased intensity of development for both housing and other uses at locations which are highlyaccessible by public transport, walking and cycling.”
In addition, point 6.6 states that:
 Local authorities should ensure that strategies in the development and local transport plancomplement each other and that consideration of development plan allocations and local transport investment and priorities are closely linked.”
In the Gonerby Hill Foot area allpublic transport ends at 5.30pm and is not available on Sundays.
(1.1.14) Planning policy guidance 13 – point 5.10
states that: “
 Local authorities should  protect sites and routes which could be critical in developing infrastructure to widen choices for both passenger and freight movements.”
Clearly the impact of traffic from 400 newhouses would not protect the main route into and out of the town via Gonerby Road.
(1.1.15) Planning policy guidance 13
– “Linking Planning and Transport” point 20.4 statesthat local authorities should: “
 Locate day to day facilities which need to be near their clientsin local and rural service centres, and adopt measures to ensure safe and easy access, particularly by walking and cycling.”
Clearly the loss of informal open space and theburden of additional traffic from 400 new houses would not fall within this guidance.There is no planning for improving infrastructure and access to the site throughhighway development. The only plan is to build a cycle path, although it is unclear wherethis could be legally and physically sited.(2) Use of Greenfield Site
 Greenfield sitesshould not be used for building when Grantham and other towns in theEast Midlands have numerous  brownfield sitesthat are available for development.
In the GAAP document Figure 10 denotes that the land designated for planning isinformal open space. Later in the same document Point states that: “
 All existing open space including, parks, equipped play space, sport pitches and informal natural open space,route ways and corridors will be protected.”
The document says that development proposals on existing open spaces will only be permittedwhere it is demonstrated that:
 (i) The proposal will provide increased or improved open space and /or recreational  facilities, or (ii) The site is not required to meet the local standard set out in Policy OSS1 or,(iii) Equivalent (or better) replacement provision is to be made within the same catchment area.
We do not believe that there are any plans in place to rectify this and therefore the lossof this land would deprive Grantham of an informal open space and go against theGAAP itself.(3) Use of Brownfield sites
Vacu-Lug Traction Tyres, Gonerby Hill Foot, which was originally identified withinGAAP as a preferred housing allocation site, is a brownfield site that we believe represents aninfinitely more sensible option for redevelopment. It would also greatly improve the air quality in an area that is in extremely close proximity to two primary schools and thousands of domestic residences. Although funding was given as an issue for not relocating Vacu-Lug, itis not one that we accept.
It would appear that the new location to the north of Peachwood Close has been selectedfor its proximity to Vacu-Lug Traction Tyres rather than being the best available site.
(4) Schools
According to our research the two primary schools in the area (Gonerby Hill Foot School
& St. Sebastian’s) are already at capacity, particularly for Key Stage 1.
Children being forced to travel further afield to schools would lead to additional trafficon the roads at peak times. These roads are already struggling to cope with the current levelsof traffic.
A new Academy is to be developed on the Central Technology College site, and it isexpected that the number of pupils on this site will double, resulting in double the schooltraffic and more burden on roads that are unable to cope.
(5) Infrastructure
The current version of the Grantham Growth Strategy selected other areas of the town in preference to Grantham North because of the difficulty of providing improved infrastructureto the north of the town. There is currently no traffic relief proposed for this area at all.
During winter the estate already experiences significant problems with road safety.Beaumont Drive and Arnold Avenue are barely passable at times of snow and severe frost.
At times of heavy rain the drainage system on the estate is unable to cope, meaning thatsome of the roads are flooded and some houses are threatened by water damage includinghouses on Stephenson Avenue which have had garages flooded by rainwater.
When the estate was built residents were informed that the sewerage system put in placedid not have capacity for any further development. There are no plans in place to developsewerage other than a development of the Marston works, which will not impact on the potential problems on this new development
Points 5.3 and 5.4 above are reinforced in the GAAP Document where, in the ‘Summary of Assessment’ it states that Anglian Water have given the overall rating of the site as being‘amber’, where infrastructure and treatment upgrades may be required.
The fields for proposed development are heavily clay based, with many natural springsand are not suitable, in our opinion, for house building. Nearby houses have requiredunderpinning due to subsidence.
Belton Lane (Gonerby) is a fairly narrow road, which currently has no housing near to itexcept within the village of Great Gonerby. There are no footpaths for most of its length. The bridge across the railway is barely wide enough for two cars and includes a high-speedchicane. There are considerable safety issues for pedestrians crossing the bridge. The presenceof housing near this road is likely to promote an increase in both vehicular and pedestriantraffic, giving rise to a significant increase in the risk of serious accidents.
(6) Loss of agricultural land
The two fields are Grade 3 agricultural quality land of good to moderate quality,currently used for production of wheat, and we are concerned that GAAP, unchallenged,would have a massive impact on the amount of agricultural land being used around Grantham.It appears wrong that, at a time of rising food prices and widescale predictions of global foodshortages, the District Council is planning to reduce the amount of agricultural land availablein the area instead of using the brownfield sites that are currently available in the vicinity.
Westbury Homes is already registered as having an agreement with the landowners andthere are concerns as to why they sought to landbank fields before planning has been passed.
(7) Landscape Sensitivity
(7.1) The Final Report of South Kesteven’s ‘Landscape Sensitivity and CapacityStudy’was completed by David Tyldesley and Associates in January 2011. Section 6 of that

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