A road providing access to a site where more than 700 homes are to be built, could begin construction in September.
Mid Devon District Council at its June planning meeting agreed a reserved matters application for a T-junction road off Blundell’s Road to the south alongside Barnesmead.
This application site has previously been the subject of an outline planning application for the construction of a mixed-use development including 700 dwellings, 22,000msq of employment land, a care home, primary school and neighbourhood centre with associated access and egress onto Blundell’s Road. The planning permission granted was a hybrid planning permission. It granted outline planning permission for all aspects of the development save for the access which was granted full detailed planning consent.
To the north of the road, permission was given for the left-in-left-out (LILO) junction on the A361 and ‘linking road’, linking the LILO junction to Blundell’s Road). This planning permission has not been implemented.
The adopted Tiverton Easter Urban Extension sets out the ambition for a roundabout as the means to terminate the linking road north of Blundells Road and the spine road south of Blundells Road which was given approval at June’s meeting.
However it is not until a minimum of 150 dwellings are occupied that a roundabout on to Blundells Road can be required and that no more than 200 dwellings can be occupied until the roundabout has been constructed and made available for public use.
Construction of both of the linking road and spine road will, in the first instance, be constructed with a temporary cross-road junction that has been safety audited.
Speaking on behalf of applicant Redrow Homes, Russell Smith said: “Redrow homes are in a contract with Chestercombe Estate to deliver the key infrastructure required for the initial phases of the outline consent granted in relation to part A of the Eastern Urban Extension.
“That includes the link road from the A361 to Blundell’s Road and the first part of the principal road that will serve the development to the south which is the spine road, and subject of this application.”
Redrow submitted an application for 166 residential dwellings off the spine road in March.
Mr Smith added: “The reserve matter application in front of you today relates that spine road and it’s a critical part of the infrastructure required to unlock the delivery of the Tiverton Eastern Urban Extension which is an important component of the Mid Devon local plan.
“The reserve matters proposals before you today being formulated with the cooperation of your officers in accordance with the site specific policies in the local plan.
“Application made with a view of doing the works in September, and without the application it could delay work until Spring 2021.”
Councillor Les Cruwys (Cranmore, Liberal Democrat) said that he had concerns over the junction.
“The problem with this road as I see it is not the road itself, but is purely the location of the junction on the west,” he said. “It is the junction that will run in behind the existing houses along Blundell’s Road.
“In the masterplan for this site, there was a five metre planted greenbelt along the back of the existing houses.
“It appears now they wish to remove that so that the new houses will be closer to the boundaries of the old ones but to include a metre wide greenbelt which will be included in the gardens of those houses and left to the occupiers of those houses to maintain and look after. You and I and everybody else knows in a few years’ time it will not happen.
“If you approve this road now you are effectively eliminating any chance of that five metre green strip being put in. To my mind that junction needs to be moved five meters down the road so we can include the green strip.
“There are an awful lot of objections in Tiverton to the removal of this green strip.”
Councillor Chris Daw (Cranmore, Conservative) asked how they would avoid the inconvenience to property owners already living on Blundell’s Road.
She said: “How long is it going to be before we put up the trees and do the garden on that site? Is that going to be months or years ahead of time?
“I think one of the areas that that they are really concerned about is the fact that the builders will be coming in, they will be using that road and it will just be a blank space.
“I’ve actually experienced this myself and I would like to see something that we could put in place, at least where the houses are now that there is some kind of screening for them, so they don’t have to keep on looking at building site for years to come.”
She was told that the application requires all the planting, seeding, surfing to be carried out within nine months of the substantial completion of this section of highway as part of the application.
Councillor Barry Warren (Lower Culm, Independent) added: “I have concerns from a road safety point of view, of a T-junction and eventually a crossroads on Blundell Road.
“Is Blundell Road staying at 40mph until then? It would raise my concerns.”