Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Lunacy


I've just read the agenda and accompanying reports for the meeting of the Suffolk Council North Area sub committee scheduled for 16th February. You can download and read it yourself by clicking this link. 

Included on the agenda are plans for two new developments in Framlingham. The first, South Of Mount Pleasant Farm proposes approximately 100 new homes and the second in Fairfield Road a further 163 dwellings. Each application is accompanied by a comprehensive report from the planning officials involved in the case and each concludes with a RECOMMENDATION.

Within each case officer's report there is the following table:-

As at 31st March 2014, the position for Framlingham was as follows: 
Completions                                                                                                                                              99
Outstanding planning permissions (not started or under construction)                                                   160

Resolution to grant awaiting legal agreement                                                                                           10                                                      
Suggested residual requirement (allocation) 2014 2027                                                                     75-150

This means that, by the council's own reckoning, Fram needs 75-150 new homes in the next twelve years. So, by these measures, either of the proposed plans would be sufficient to fill the town's anticipated new housing needs until 2027.

Even if we take the worst case scenario (from the planners' point of view) and reduce the outstanding figure due to a possible reduction in one already approved development and take the high end of their required target as follows

As at 31st March 2014, the position for Framlingham was as follows: 
Completions                                                                                                                                              99
Outstanding planning permissions (not started or under construction)                                                   100

Resolution to grant awaiting legal agreement                                                                                           10     
Sub Total                                                                                                                                                  209
                                                 
Suggested residual requirement (allocation) 2014 – 2027                                                                       241    

Total for plan period 2010 2027 (figures rounded)                                                                                450

You will see that the (worst case) new housing forecast to be needed in 12 years is 241 and yet the planners are recommending 263 to commence in the immediate future. Two hundred and forty one homes in twelve years would be twenty per year - a sensible and sustainable number. As each twenty was built the town would adapt to integrate the growth but to put three major building projects (these two plus one already approved) on three of the five roads into the town is a recipe for total chaos, inevitable noise pollution and traffic congestion. 

Framlingham is heavily dependent upon tourism and visitors' experiences of a visit would become memorable for all the wrong reasons.

Approval of both plans would increase the town's population by 30%. Imagine increasing any town or village by such an unmanageable amount (that would be the equivalent of  40,000 new homes in a town the size of Ipswich)  - total lunacy.

I've no problems with the development at a sustainable and sensible level but increase any community at this rate and it will be destroyed.

We've got an appointment that we can't cancel on Monday 16th but anybody who agrees with the above and has the time should show support for FRAm (our residents' association) and attend the planning meeting. It starts at 9 a.m.