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Agenda item

20/01119/FUL - Garage Site 4, Bishops Drive, Bishops Cleeve

PROPOSAL: Demolition of existing garages and erection of 11 dwellings, car parking, access road and landscaping.

 

OFFICER RECOMMENDATION: Delegated Permit.

Minutes:

72.14        This was an application for the demolition of existing garages and erection of 11 dwellings, car parking, access road and landscaping. 

72.15        The Planning Officer advised that the proposal was for 11 dwellings comprised of seven houses and a block of four apartments. The houses, comprised of three pairs of semi-detached units and a single detached unit, would be located to the western part of the site, and would face out towards the school playing field with parking opposite. The block of four apartments would be located to the eastern part of the site close to the site access with parking to the front and individual private gardens to the rear. All of the properties would be served off a single access road and the development would incorporate 20 unallocated parking spaces and two motorbike spaces. Policy SD10 of the JCS supported housing development on previously developed land in the existing built-up areas of Tewkesbury’s rural service centres and therefore the principle of the development was acceptable. The proposal adopted a contemporary architectural approach, which was utilised throughout the scheme. This would provide for a cohesive development. The units would be faced in either red or grey brick to provide a degree of variation. The roof would be finished with a zinc standing seam metal roof, which would be complimented by grey windows, doors, and guttering. It was considered that the proposal was of an acceptable size, scale and design and would have a satisfactory impact on the character and appearance of the surrounding area. The proposal would also have an acceptable impact on existing properties in terms of light, outlook, and privacy. All of the dwellings would be affordable, which would be secured through a S106 agreement. This represented a considerable benefit of the scheme. In terms of the access, the highways authority confirm that there would not be an unacceptable impact on highway safety or a severe impact on congestion. Given that the remaining occupied garages were used for storage purposes only, their removal would not displace parking onto the surrounding highway network. With regard to drainage, the applicant proposed to discharge surface water into a surface water sewer located in Bishops Drive. However, the Lead Local Flood Authority (LLFA) advised that this was a private sewer and therefore the applicant would require approval from the owner to carry out any work on it. The LLFA advised that this must be provided to demonstrate it was a suitable strategy. At this stage, the applicant had not fully established the ownership of the private sewer or whether approval would be granted for connection. Given the uncertainty as to whether an appropriate drainage strategy could be achieved, it was considered that it would not be appropriate to condition drainage details in this instance. In light of this, it was recommended that permission be delegated to Officers in order to secure suitable drainage details, the amendment of planning conditions as appropriate and to allow for the completion of a Section 106 to secure the affordable housing.

72.16        The Chair invited the applicant’s representative to speak in support of the application. He stated that this scheme had been in the making for some time now and was part of a programme of works.  He advised that it was believed that the planning application represented a scheme that would provide positive benefit to the housing needs of Bishop’s Cleeve by providing 11 one, two and three bedroomed homes for local residents.  Four 1-bedroomed maisonettes were proposed for rent and four 2-bedroom houses and three 3-bedroom houses for shared ownership.The affordable rented 1-bedroom provision would support the demand for smaller accommodation for residents who were unable to find suitable housing for their needs.  The shared ownership provision offered a much needed type of accommodation and tenure for the Borough and together provided local people with high quality affordable homes.The scheme would offer well designed homes which would benefit from high thermal efficiency, would be built to Rooftop’s Living Homes Standard which incorporated where possible solar PV panels and electric charging points.  It was felt that the development would contribute to an improved visual and social aspect to that of garages. The position and orientation of the units prevented overlooking to and from the adjacent properties. The method for creating suitable dwellings for modern living was to make larger than usual living areas and all dwellings created were above the minimum requirement of the nationally described space standards.As would be expected of such a site a significant number of surveys had been carried out to deal with matters of ecology, flooding, drainage, transport and traffic. The proposed development design embraced and met the challenges of those technical constraints. The building design had been shaped through meetings with the local community who felt the designs should have a contemporary feel. The frontages and architectural styling of the proposed buildings had been designed to be consistent and symmetrical where possible to ensure coherence across the development with each façade having similar articulation walls, windows and roof lines with two brick colours and recessed entrance doors.These homes would be built to the same standard that had been seen at other former garage sites in Bishop’s Cleeve.This was a brownfield site which was subject to anti-social behaviour and this scheme would bring positive benefits to the area, building much needed affordable homes for local people, with a modern design at the forefront.

72.17        A local Member for Bishops Cleeve indicated that he had initially had three issues of concern in relation to this development; the amount of on-site parking, the impact on surrounding properties and access from the spur of Bishops Drive which was quite a narrow road. He thanked the Planning Officer for going through the detail of the application and the work he had done on it but wished to clarify both for his, and the benefit of the Committee, the matter of displacement parking as the proposal was based on the demolition of a garage site. He indicated that it was his understanding that of none of the garages currently rented, of which there were 20, were used for cars, they were all used for storage. The Planning Officer confirmed that this was the case and referred to paragraph 1.2 of his report which stated that of those 20 only three were rented to tenants of Rooftop of which only one lived in Bishops Drive, 10 were allocated to residents who lived in the Parish of Bishop’s Cleeve and some were rented to people who lived outside of the Parish which demonstrated that they were not well used. The local Member stated that this confirmed to him that demolishing these garages was not going to lead to displacement issues which had been a concern raised by a local resident. He indicated that, whilst he had initially had concerns at the outset based on all of the information which he had received, those concerns had been addressed and felt that this scheme represented a good proposal on a cramped site that definitely needed to be redeveloped. Based on this, the local Member proposed the amended Officer recommendation of delegated permit subject to suitable drainage details, amendment of planning conditions as appropriate and the completion of a S106 agreement to secure the affordable housing. In seconding the motion the Member stated that it was really uplifting to see such a good design which provided a solution to some very underused, unsightly garages and represented an excellent way forward. Upon being put to the vote, it was

RESOLVED           That the application be DELEGATED to the Development Manager to PERMIT subject to suitable drainage details, amendment of planning conditions as appropriate and the completion of a S106 agreement to secure the affordable housing.

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