Local News

Highways Obstruct Riverside Homes Plan

Thursday 21 March 2019

The County Highways Authority have recommended refusal of plans for nearly 400 homes on the site of the former gas works next to the River Lee.

Developer St William Homes LLP have submitted a planning application for 383 homes and 1,500 square metres of employment floorspace on the former gas works site east of Marshgate Drive. The plan includes parking for 415 vehicles.

In a letter to planning officers, the County Council Highways Authority wrote "The site and wider highway works proposed do not make sufficient provision for residents and visitors to travel to and from it sustainably and safely". 

The letter continues: "this is a sensitive part of the [road] network, already at full capacity during peak hours, and any proposed development in the vicinity must demonstrate that it provides appropriate mitigation measures arising from its traffic."

The Highway Authority also expressed misgivings about the number of car parking spaces provided with the development.

The council have also received 196 letters of objection from the public. None were received in support.

  A view of the proposed development from the street

The site in earmarked for around 200 homes in the recently adopted District Plan. St.William initially proposed 450 dwellings but reduced this to 383 in their formal planning application.

Hertford Town Council have expressed alarm at the number of homes proposed.  In their own letter of objection to planning officers they said "Road traffic issues are a paramount reason to refuse [planning permission], but the parking provision on site is woefully inadequate and there is an acute offsite parking issue already with the whole area beyond its saturation point."

Individual councillors have also written to object to the plans. Cllr.Jane Sartin wrote "It is disappointing that the developers have chosen to ignore the District Plan in favour of creating a development which would maximise profit at the expense of recognising and protecting the needs and quality of life of the local community. I hope that East Herts Council will stand firmly by the recently agreed District Plan and reject the application".

  CGI showing the view from Hertford Lock

The developers were given a rough ride by the public when they first exhibited their plans in June last year. Overdevelopment, congestion and lack of parking provision were the main concerns expressed by visitors.

No date has yet been set for a decison on the plans. The next meeting of the Development Management Committee is in May.

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