Recommendation: Conditional Approval, subject to legal agreements
(Councillor Angus Ross declared a personal interest in Item 37, application 171944 – Parcel Q, Nine Mile Ride, Arborfield, on the grounds that he had taken part in discussions relating to the development of the wider Arborfield Garrison site in his previous role at the Council. He had an open mind with regard to the decision.)
Proposal: Reserved Matters application pursuant to Outline Planning Consent O/2014/2280 for the construction of 114 apartments with communal space, access from the Nine Mile Ride Extension (NMRE), with associated internal access roads, parking, landscaping and open space, footpaths/ cycle ways, Sustainable Urban Drainage (SuDS), and substation (Parcel Q).
Applicant: Crest Nicholson Operations Limited C/O Savills
The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in Agenda pages 11 to 44.
The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included:
· Comments from the Parish Council;
· Proposed amendments to Condition 2 and Condition 9;
· A correction to the amount of the commuted sum for affordable housing;
· A proposed Deed of Variation of Heads of Terms of Reference, and
· Clarification regarding affordable housing.
Members had visited the site in 2015.
Chris Tinker, Executive Director at Crest Nicholson, spoke in favour of the application, outlining the issues around the availability of rental properties for 2-30 year olds both nationally and locally, and the egregious state of much of the private rentals. He described the nature of the proposed development. It was suburban in nature and designed to a high specification that would weather the high turnover of tenants in this transient market, offering short to medium term lets at competitive rates.
In response to Member questions regarding parking, the Service Manager, Highways Development Management, stated that the proposed managed unallocated parking offered greater flexibility to the development, resulting in a more efficient use of the spaces with all spaces being available for all to use rather than spaces being left vacant as it was allocated to someone that may not own a car. There would be an on-site manager, which would aid in managing the parking. The application offered a ratio of 1.3 spaces per dwelling which is higher than set out within the guidance.
In response to Member queries regarding rents and tenure, the Service Manager, SDL Planning Delivery, indicated that the levels of rent would be dictated by the market. The development comprised a range of 1-2 bedroom flats which are likely to be occupied by transient professionals on a 1-3 year tenure.
In response to Member questions regarding access to open space, the Case Officer indicated paths would link the site with the SANGs. He stated that there would be links to bridleways and footpaths throughout Arborfield development. The Service Manager, Highways Development Management, went on to state that the access route to Bohunt School was open to vehicles and also made good provision for both foot and cycle users. The roads on the application before the Committee would not be adopted and as such not governed by Civil Parking Enforcement.
Resolved: That Application no 172005 be approved, subject to the conditions set out in Agenda pages 11 to 44 and the proposed amendments to conditions 2 and 9 and the corrections and clarifications as laid out in the Members’ Update and completion of the legal agreement relating to Deed of Variation to the S106.