We’ve taken an overview up in The Chronic observatory; the stars of Britain’s Oldest Recorded are next expected to collide again sometime in the New Year – which is also when the esteemed members of the CBC Planning Committee might actually complete this agenda.
It’s gonna be a long ‘un, Comrades.
Best keep the blog post short then.
Let’s start with Tesco sniffing around Butt Road. It is usual at these Planning Committee meetings for the cream to rise to the top. The BIG HITTER [singular] on the agenda draws out the crowds to either cheer or hiss. Best the main business done and dusted first, etc.
But for the evening of 13th December, it looks like they could be drawing lots to see who gets to make the early exit.
For the record, Tesco is proposing:
“A local centre comprising a supermarket, six retail units, affordable housing and car parking.”
The original application was deferred back in June. Transport woes were given as the reason as why the Tesco-isation of Sunny Colch couldn’t continue. They should build a satellite of roundabouts, just like down at the Hythe.
Oh, hang on…
Anyway – a transport audit has been carried out leading to the conclusion that if Butt Road / Goojerat Road is modeled correctly, the transport woes will be disappear.
Time to put the theory to the test, time for the esteemed members of the CBC Planning Committee to [probably] pass the app, but with some rather heavy Section 106 wonga ties for Tesco to observe.
And so with your 4×4 laden down with Tesco’s finest loo roll from Butt Road [nice], time to take a drive down Lexden Road and back to base at Stanway.
Which brings us to number two [Oooh] of the BIG HITTERS [steady]:
“Stanway Railway Depot, Halstead Road.
Construction of 123 residential properties with associated access roads, footpaths, garages, car parking, cycle parking, infrastructure works, landscaping, fencing, walling, public open space/ equipped play space and public highway works.”
These include the rather strong wording put forward by Stanway Parish Council:
“The traffic surveys are not adequate, nor is access to Halstead Road from either the A12, or the Lexden / London Roads. The wildlife surveys are not detailed enough. The general infrastructure issues i.e. doctors, public transport, school placements have not been looked into enough.”
The apolitical CBC planners however take a different approach.
The report recognises:
“Whilst the proposal would alter the character of this part of Stanway, it is an allocated site in the Local Plan, therefore the principle of the development is not opposed.”
And wahddya know:
“Conditional Approval subject to signing of a Section 106 Agreement.”
This covers £366,728 for “Primary School education,” although it isn’t clear if this is part of a proposal for a new school.
Do the math.
And finally, the completing the trilogy of the BIG THREE at CBC Planning next Thursday is:
“Enlarged and refurbished Williams and Griffin store including part demolition and rebuild, remodeling of external elevations and internal alterations.”
Balancing the hyperlocal economy and the heritage of Sunny Colch.
The retention or redevelopment of the two facades at 147 and 149 High Street appears to be the main debate within the hefty apolitical report. The solution suggested is something of a bungle:
“A 3-dimensional public art sculpture on the Foundry Lane wall referencing the historical use of this space.”
Virtual reality comes to W & G.
CBC received a single letter in support of this application. It is likely to hold little sway for the esteemed members of the CBC Planning Committee. At stake here is the sensitive issue of commerce over hyperlocal character.
The report states:
“The proposal brings a significant investment into Colchester’s town centre with a number of benefits to the local economy and for local residents of Colchester and beyond. This includes a significant increase in floor space and additional employment.
Whilst the loss of the 1920 facades that are locally listed is regrettable, the harm of this need to be taken in context.”
And like all half decent hat tricks, the end result is back to where we started:
“Conditional approval subject to signing of Section 106 Agreement.”
Odds of 1-3 AGAINST for any of the BIG THREE applications NOT being passed sometime before Christmas.