Agenda item

Application no 163264 - Montague Park Phase 6, William Heelas Way

Recommendation:  Approval


Proposal:  Reserved matters pursuant to outline planning permission O/2010/1712 as varied by VAR/2015/0342 and161963 for a development of up to 650 dwellings and associated infrastructure.  The reserve matters comprise details of the neighbourhood centre incorporating retail and community use on ground floor, public parking, a public square, neighbourhood equipped area for play (NEAP) and 115 dwellings with associated internal access roads and footways, parking and landscaping.   Details of appearance, landscaping, layout and scale to be determined.


Applicant:  David Wilson Homes


TheCommittee receivedand revieweda reportabout thisapplication, setout inAgenda pages 11to 56. 


TheCommittee wasadvised thatthe Members'Update included:


·         Proposed change to Condition 2 listing revised plans;

·         Clarifications to Conditions 4 and 5 regarding design for access and to mitigate congestion;

·         Proposed additional Condition pertaining to the submission of details of roof design prior to construction, and

·         Proposed additional informatives relating to landscaping details and larger vehicles.


Andrew Walters, Wokingham Town Council, spoke in objection to the application, stated that fundamental requirements of design had not been met. He stated that he also spoke on behalf of Julian McGhee-Sumner, Ward Member for Wescott.  He suggested that the development would be of high density and low quality, especially Block C.  Phase 6 would consist of 91% of the 1 and 2 bed flats.  He went on to suggest that the design was out of keeping with the rest of the development and were of an inappropriate scale.  He indicated that the increase of traffic on London Road would be an issue; the Southern Distributor Road was not complete, and cited CP4, which stated that suitable arrangements for the provision of infrastructure should be in place prior to granting of permission.


Ann Gillings, Agent, spoke on behalf of the applicant, David Wilson Homes, explaining how the application before the Committee fitted into the wider Strategic Development Location (SDL) and that the developer and planning officers at Wokingham Borough Council had worked to achieve a high quality design.  She stated that the area of the application was designed to be the hub of the whole Montague Park development and therefore was of a different character to other areas within the development.  She went on to state that the housing density across the site as a whole was 34 dph and the ratio of houses to flats was 60:40.  She suggested that buildings on the edge of the central hub had been designed to merge with surrounding areas by the use of different styles and sizes of build.


In response, the Case Officer explained that the proposals were in line with the outline application, which had preceded the application in front of the Committee and had been designed to have a range of areas with distinct character.  She stated that there had only been an indicative mix of dwelling types and sizes in the original outline and reiterated the reference made by Ann Gillings to the gradation of property styles around the hub.  She also suggested that the inclusion of flats over garages offered a wider range of options to future homeowners.


The Service Manager, Highways Development Management, stated that the traffic assessment that had taken place as part of the outline application had allowed for 650 habitations and that this last phase Reserved Matters application resulted in an overall site total of  636 habitations.  The junction at London Road, which formed the connection with the development spine road (Southern Distributor Road) had been delivered taking into account the cumulative effect of the whole of the South Wokingham SDL.  This was to prevent multiple road works taking place as this junction as the SDL was progressed both north and south of the railway.


The Head of SDL Delivery spoke to the design overall and the intention in masterplanning and the outline planning permission was that it should include different character areas and densities as part of placemaking.  He explained that large developments of a single nature often failed and that placemaking would aid in increasing footfall and vitality of neighbourhood centre and thereby the whole.


In response to Member questions regarding parking, the Service Manager, Highways Development Management, stated that the parking allocated to be shared between the neighbourhood centre and Floreat Primary School exceeds the Council’s parking guidance.  Some of the properties would have tandem parking but this would all be allocated and is acceptable.  He went on to state that parking would be managed.


In response to Member questions regarding access, the Service Manager, Highways Development Management, stated that the Phase 6 development included a 15m loading bay for deliveries plus a turning head.  The design had been tracked for refuse and delivery vehicles and had 6m access roads, and as it was a cul-de-sac there would be no problems with through traffic.  The size of vehicles that could access the development was governed by a condition requiring a servicing strategy to be submitted for approval by the Council.  The Coppid Beech roundabout and the London Road junction had been upgraded and signalised and the eventual completion of the SDR and NDR form part of the wider transport interventions as identified within the Core Strategy .


RESOLVED:  That Application no 163264 be approved subject to the conditions set out in Agenda pages 11 to 56, the amendment to condition 2, the clarifications and additional condition as laid out in the Members’ Update.

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