A RESIDENTS' protest group has been set up to oppose building almost 80 homes on the last remaining field on the east of Birmingham Road, in Stratford-upon-Avon.
Leading the protest group, resident Matt Hunt said the planning application submitted by applicant William Davis Ltd, should be refused as the Birmingham Road due to traffic congestion, and the proposed houses would be built on a field subject to severe flooding.
The proposal was for 78 houses to be built between 256 and 346 Birmingham Road, just beyond Oakleigh Road. Part of the proposal includes the St Peter’s Way traffic lights being adapted, to allow an entry to the new estate—therefore, Mr Hunt said, creating even more traffic on the already congested road.
Mr Hunt explained that the field, which lies next to Racecourse Brook, was only flooded again on Christmas Eve, but it was at its worst during the floods in July 2007. He said: “The local areas flooded in 2007. A lot of work has been done by the Environment Agency so there has been no repeat since but I believe they [the developers] have underestimated how much water the field copes with.”
Mr Hunt continued: “Why build on a flood plain? Also, they have gone for the cheapest option on the balancing pond. There are better schemes which if put in would totally eradicate the flood risk in this area once and for all. There won't be a better time to do it. The developers should fund this if it does go ahead in my opinion.”
He also said that all planning applications should be put on hold until Stratford District Council completes its local development plan.
County Cllr Peter Balaam (Lib Dem, Stratford Avenue and New Town) added: “It would be foolish in the extreme to allow yet another piecemeal development on this dreadfully congested road. It would be doubly foolish to allow housing to be built where there is a high risk of flooding.”
A 90-page flood risk assessment and drainage strategy report by BSP Consulting stated that the brook was the primary source of flood risk to the site.
The development proposals are for the construction of residential dwellings, attenuation ponds, adoptable roads and sewers, hard standings and soft landscaping.
In accordance with National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), the proposed residential use falls under the more vulnerable category in terms of flood risk.
The executive summary reported: “The investigations carried out as part of this flood risk assessment and flood risk management measures proposed have demonstrated that the development will be safe, without increasing flood risk elsewhere.”
The consultation deadline for residents to lodge their opinions to Stratford District Council is on Monday 7th January. Stratford Town Council will decide its response the application at a meeting the following day.
To join the protest group on-line, visit Facebook and search Birmingham Road Traffic Congestion or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
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