Members considered the East Chatteris Broad Concept Plan (BCP). Members were advised of the rationale behind BCPs, introduced through Policy LP7 of the Fenland Local Plan 2014, to ensure that the large urban extensions are planned and implemented in a co-ordinated way. The BCP's sets out proposals for residential development on 26 hectares of land providing up to 350 dwellings on the site, together with associated infrastructure, open space and drainage. For the last two years a team of representatives including local authority officers and developers/landowners and their agents have been meeting to develop a BCP for East Chatteris.
Members were informed that the process has involved engagement with relevant stakeholders and a public consultation has been carried out with the residents of Chatteris. Background studies have been carried out and funded mainly by the developer to ensure the BCP is deliverable and thus ensure planning applications can be submitted confidently on the back of the BCP. Issues relating to landscaping, public open space, archaeology, heritage, drainage, ecology and highways have all been consulted on with the relevant stakeholders and in principal agreement has been reached.
Members noted that there has been one objection received from Cambridgeshire County Council Transport Assessment Team, who are raising a holding objection due to insufficient information concerning the litigation measures for the traffic impact, however the agents transport highways engineer has confirmed that these matters will be fully considered at the planning application stage and the Transport Assessment Team will be fully consulted.
Members were advised that the Public Consultation had taken place last year and has not been subject to consultation at the present time, however in the last couple of days communication has been received from one resident objecting to the proposal advising that they are looking into ways of protecting the land from development. The resident will be acknowledged and responded to in writing.
Members made comments, asked questions and received responses as follows:
- Councillor Sutton stated he is very pleased to see the BCP and is sure during the next phase, any issues can be overcome and addressed. He passed his thanks to all those concerned for their work and commitment to date.
- The Chairman concurred with Councillor Sutton and agreed that we are only in the infancy of the plan and it is up to the partners to bring forward the various stages of construction.
- Councillor Mrs Hay stated that she had attended the public consultation and didn't hear one adverse comment on the indicative plans that they were shown and she believes that the majority of Chatteris residents will be supportive of the proposal.
- The Chairman commended the comprehensive document that had been presented today for approval.
- Councillor Mrs Newell asked for assurances concerning the archaeology aspect. Officers' confirmed that a significant agreed protection area has been identified and steps will be taken to ensure protection of this important area.
Proposed by Councillor Mrs Hay and seconded by Councillor Sutton and decided that the Broad Concept Plan for East Chatteris be approved.
(Councillors Mrs Hay, Murphy and Mrs Newell registered in accordance with Paragraph 14 of the Code of Conduct on Planning Matters, that they were present at Chatteris Town Council at which this item had been discussed but had taken no part).