THE first piece of the Long Marston housing jigsaw has attracted significant opposition from local residents.
Last year CALA Homes submitted a reserved matters application for the first 400 homes at the site, plans which included football pitches, ponds, play areas, allotments and a community retail business hub.
The deadline for public comments has now passed with many voicing their disapproval of the plan.
Eventually CALA want to build up to 3,500 homes on the former airfield, with an application for the remaining 3,100 homes expected in the coming weeks.
The developer is expected to contribute more than £100million to fund infrastructure projects across the Stratford area, if the overall 3,500-home plan goes ahead.
Many of those objecting to the 400-home application criticise the transport links to the new development, the potential for increased traffic and the lack of affordable housing.
Within the application CALA Homes say the cost of works to remove contaminants from the site will result in increased infrastructure costs, making it unviable to deliver affordable housing.
A statement from the Stratford Residents’ Action Group, objecting to the proposal, says: “We object to this application as there is no provision for affordable housing which contradicts the Core Strategy. The wider infrastructure plans for this entire development are not only unsustainable, but not strategically researched providing true options and the proposed solutions are misleading to the town and its residents.
“To provide zero affordable housing is simply not acceptable and is contrary to both CS18 and CS19 policies within the Core Strategy. If CALA’s reasons for not providing affordable housing are accepted, this is appalling.”
It adds: “SDC are yet to convincingly demonstrate to the town the viability of the proposed road infrastructure and whether it is fit for purpose.”
Another comment says: “Another 400 homes on an already creaking transport infrastructure is simply overkill. Merely referencing the SWRR as a solution is missing the point that people want to shop and visit the town etc.”
A CALA spokesperson said: “We feel we have submitted a proposal for the first 400 homes at Long Marston Airfield that will help to deliver the new, vibrant and sustainable community that was envisioned in the outline planning permission.
“As part of our reserved matters application, we have submitted a number of detailed reports to substantiate our proposals. We are sure these reports, as well as the consultation feedback from the public, will all be carefully considered by the planning authority when reaching a decision.”