Agenda and minutes

Development Management Committee
Thursday 17th June 2021 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Council Offices, The Campus, Welwyn Garden City, Herts, AL8 6AE

Contact: Gurdip Paddan 

Note: Due to ongoing covid restrictions and current public health guidance, space for public attendance at this meeting is extremely limited. If you wish to attend this meeting please email democracy@welhat.gov.uk for advice or assistance. Please be assured that the meeting will be webcast to enable the public to follow proceedings safely from home. 

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

APPOINTMENT OF CHAIRMAN AND VICE CHAIRMAN

To note that the Council at their Annual Meeting on 24 May 2021 had appointed a Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Committee for 2021/22.

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Minutes:

It was noted that Councillors J.Boulton and B.Fitzsimon were appointed Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the committee for the 2021/22 Municipal Year at the Annual Council meeting on 24 May 2021.

2.

SUBSTITUTION

To note any substitution of Committee Members made in accordance with Council Procedure Rules.

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Minutes:

The following substitution of a Committee Member had been made in accordance with Council Procedure Rules:

 

Councillor S.Kasumu for Councillor C.Juggins.

3.

APOLOGY

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Minutes:

An apology for absence was received from Councillor C.Juggins.

4.

MINUTES

To confirm as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting held on 11 March 2021 (previously circulated).

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Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting held on 11 March 2021 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

5.

73 BRIDGE ROAD EAST WELWYN GARDEN CITY AL7 1UT - 6/2020/2268/MAJ - ERECTION OF TWO NEW BUILDINGS COMPRISING 111 RESIDENTIAL APARTMENTS, ACCESS, CAR AND CYCLE PARKING, LANDSCAPING AND ANCILLARY DEVELOPMENT INVOLVING DEMOLITION OF EXISTING BUILDING pdf icon PDF 754 KB

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance).

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Minutes:

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) on the erection of two new buildings comprising 111 residential apartments, access, car and cycle parking, landscaping and ancillary development involving demolition of existing building.

 

The site is located within a designated employment area. The application site is located on the corner of Bridge Road East and Swallowfields and it comprises of a vacant, Sui Generis, Land Rover car dealership. The application site currently benefits from a car park to the front and side of the building with limited landscaping along the boundaries.

 

Two apartment buildings are proposed. The proposed northern building would contain two separate stair cores and a single lift core. It would accommodate 34 apartments (21 x 1-bedroom and 13 x 2- bedroom) and would rise from 4 to 5 storeys in height. The southern building would contain three separate stair cores and two lift cores. It would accommodate 77 apartments (21 x 1-bedroom and 56 x 2-bedroom and would rise from 4 to 7 storeys in height.

 

The application was presented to the Development Management Committee because it was called in at the request of former Councillor Malcolm Cowan.

 

Mr T.Waller, Agent, spoke for the application saying that the application would make efficient use of the previously developed land in the urban area and is walking distance of the Town Centre and Railway Station. The proposed apartments have been designed with great care and ensures that they will be of high quality. It will also be surrounded by landscape and the property will be provided with roof gardens and the intension is for them to meet the standards required in the garden city. The application will use high quality materials and the appearances have been refined in pre-application discussions with Officers. The site has been marketed for over three years and complies with the emerging local plan requirements. There had been no serious interest in the site and has been vacant for over two years. There is also residential development throughout the area including to the North and South of the site. The agent believed that this would be an attractive development and would be suitable within the area. 

 

Mr G.Beard, Neighbour, spoke as an objector, saying that he lives close to the proposed development. Mr Beard stated that all of the flats on the elevation of the proposed building will look into his kitchen, living room, garden and bedroom. Seven storeys of flats will look into the property and each of his neighbour’s properties. The local school will be adversely impacted with the rise in the volume of children coming to the school with the proposed development. Mr Beard stated that currently he has great difficulty driving out of his property and into his property with the amount of traffic on the road, it effectively renders the road; a one way road. There is also a fire station 3 metres down the road and it can cause issues if a vehicle needs to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

61 NEW ROAD, DIGSWELL, WELWYN AL6 0AL - 6/2020/2818/FULL - DEMOLITION OF EXISTING DWELLING AND ERECTION OF A DETACHED TWO STOREY BUILDING WITH ACCOMMODATION IN ROOFSPACE COMPRISING 9 APARTMENTS pdf icon PDF 704 KB

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) on the demolition of existing dwelling and erection of a detached two storey building with accommodation in roofspace comprising of 9 apartments.

 

During the meeting a point on Badgers was made.  In the Officers report under paragraph 10.47 it stated ‘10.47  Policy R16 refers to Protection of Species and outlines that planning permission will not be granted for any development or use of land which would have an adverse impact on badgers or species protected by schedules 1, 5 or 8 of the 1981 Wildlife and Countryside Act, as amended.’   Members felt strongly that if there were Badgers involved then approval should not be granted and suggested deferring the application.

 

Councillor R.Trigg stated that neighbours had seen Badgers running across paths and into the garden of 61 New Road to enter woods behind the property.

 

The Planning Officer confirmed that the relevant wildlife associations had been consulted (Herts Ecology and Hertfordshire Wildlife Trust) on the application.  In terms of Bats, the building incorporates elements such as Bat boxes to help address issues on their habitats. No other species had been highlighted by the Wildlife Trust. An Ecological Impact Assessment had been provided as part of the assessment which covered all protected species and no other objections had been raised.

 

The Legal advisor stated that she had not seen the Ecology Assessment but it is a significant matter and would be concerned if we had not assessed it appropriately. If there were Badgers there, then it was a significant matter that should be looked at and considered before moving forward.

 

Following discussion, it was proposed and seconded by Councillors N.Pace and J.Weston and

 

RESOLVED:

(unanimous)

 

Due to concerns raised about the potential of badgers on the site the Committee voted to defer the application to allow for further ecological assessments to take place.

7.

APPEAL DECISIONS pdf icon PDF 286 KB

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance).

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Minutes:

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) detailing recent appeal decisions for the period 23 February to 18 May 2021.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That appeal decisions during the period 23 February to 18 May 2021 be noted.

8.

PLANNING UPDATE - FUTURE PLANNING APPLICATIONS pdf icon PDF 283 KB

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance).

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Minutes:

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) providing the Committee with a summary of planning applications that might be presented over the next one or two months.  Members noted that if the call-in or application was withdrawn, the item would not be presented to the Committee.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That future planning applications which might be considered by the Committee be noted.

9.

DEVELOPMENT MANAGEMENT PERFORMANCE REPORT JANUARY- MARCH 2021 pdf icon PDF 377 KB

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance).

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Minutes:

Report of the Corporate Director (Public Protection, Planning and Governance) relating to the performance of the Development Management Service over the three month period January to March 2021.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the Development Management Performance Report, January to March 2021, be noted.