Objection to revived Shrewsbury homes plan over traffic and 'unsustainability'

Residents have objected to revived plans for 150 new homes next to a retail park due to heavy traffic and unsustainable demands on services.

The site lies between Meole Brace Retail Park and the park and ride.
The site lies between Meole Brace Retail Park and the park and ride.

The scheme, for land next to Meole Brace Retail Park in Shrewsbury, was brought back earlier this month having been thrown out by Shropshire Council planners last year on the grounds that the site lies outside the town’s development boundary.

The applicant, Savills Investment Management, says the development will provide much-needed housing and bring economic benefits to the area.

However Bayston Hill Parish Council has opposed the plans. In a statement it said: "The grounds for refusal are of unsustainability and traffic impacts are its main concern with due regard for the archaeological significance of the site to also be properly taken into account.

"It is appreciated that the developers have revised the proposed site access onto Hereford Road by widening the road to allow for keeping the current waiting lane to access Pulley Lane off Hereford Road. Members would suggest a further improvement being the addition of traffic signalling for the Pulley Lane junction which is in synchronisation with Dobbies Island (A5/A49) signalling and their new site junction off Hereford Road.

"The proposals fail to demonstrate improved sustainability and are likely to have a detrimental impact on Bayston Hill. It is appreciated that the development boundary for Shrewsbury Town in the draft Local Plan 2016-2038 is to be amended to incorporate this site but members back the stance taken up until now for the Local Plan to be fully adopted before planning applications are decided upon."

Under the plans, the homes will be built on an piece of land between the retail units and the park and ride site. Vehicles will access the development and park and ride from both the retail park and a new turning off Hereford Road, which the developer says will help ease current congestion problems.

It is proposed to create an area of public open space in the centre of the development around the site of a Neolithic ‘double-ring ditch’ discovered by archaeologists in the 1990s.

A design and access statement by The Harris Partnership, agent to the applicant, says: “The scheme objectives were to deliver a scheme of modern, high quality residential units, including affordable housing units, within a desirable and accessible location.

“The design incorporates a new vehicular connection to the Hereford Road. This would provide a separate access to the park and ride as a priority, which would significantly improve the efficiency of the service.”

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