Outline planning application with all matters reserved for up to 100 dwellings and associated works and infrastructure.
The Head of Planning outlined the planning application in detail and referred Members to page of the supplementary advice sheet which set out an additional condition. Members were reminded that when applications were received, the department had to calculate housing need as defined by Government set methodology and measure against that in terms of housing delivery. If Medway did not meet its housing targets by 95%, a 20% buffer was added to its housing delivery requirement, if 85% was not met, an action plan had to be produced and if 75% was not met the presumption in favour of sustainable development applied. While delivery was improving, the Council delivery was still below 75%
The Committee was advised that all policies in the Local Plan that restricted housing supply were not relevant to this application. The consideration for this application was based on whether the proposals were sustainable in terms of Econimc, Social and Environmental considerations The Head of Planning talked through these 3 elements and the weight to be applied to the various issues and whether any harm outweighed the need for housing.
Members were advised that in relation to the Parish Council’s comments which alluded to the history of Hoo and paying due regard to the WWII stop line, the application site did not impact on the stop linet which fell outside the application site
Members were also informed that as part of S106, the adopted developers contribution guide would only secure up to, £13000 per dwelling but that following negotiation the applicant had agreed to increase the contribution to £1.8million, which equated to £18000 per dwelling. The CIL tests still had to be met in that the contributions needed to relate to the development and make an unacceptable development acceptable while being reasonable in scale. .
With the agreement of the Committee, Councillor Sands addressed the Committee as Ward Councillor and raised the following concerns:
The Committee discussed the application and some Members raised concerns on impact to the infrastructure, in particular to the highway, transport, schools and social spaces.
The Head of Planning agreed that sensitivity would have to be afforded to residents of the care home home near the proposed site but reminded the Committee that not all care homes were in rural areas and that people needed to adapt to accommodate for changes in demographics. There was a significant need for housing in Hoo Peninsula and the whole of Medway.
The Committee was informed that if they were minded to refuse the application, and the applicant took this to appeal, the chance of the decision being upheld was no more than 5% and the significant additional contribution that would have been received would not be received which would be a loss to the community of Hoo.
Some members of the Committee raised concerns on the wider landscape of the area and felt it would be beneficial to visit the area to get an understanding on what would be affected by housing development in the future. Reassurance was sought on the importance of the Stop line and that it would not be affected by the development
The Head of Planning acknowledged the points made on a later site visit to the wider area of the Peninsula to consider the Local Plan aspirations.
During discussion, it was suggested that this planning application be deferred to enable a site visit to take place and a motion to this effect was put forward.
The suggestion of a deferral was not supported upon being put to the vote
Approved subject to:
a) Section 106 agreement to secure the following
i) Secure a minimum of 25% affordable housing
A financial contribution of £1,809,400.00 in total to be proportionately split into the following:
• £474,423.93 towards Highways Improvements related to the development including improvements to junctions on the Strategic Highway Network
• £54,872 towards Nursery and Primary Education improvements directly related to the development
• £427,732.66 towards Secondary Education directly related to the development
• £223,641.35 towards Health and Social Care including improvements to Walter Brice Centre, new ambulance community response and new healthy living centre on Hoo peninsula. • £282,594.38 towards Community and Cultural Facilities including improvements/replacement sports centre, upgrades to community facilities including Library and Hoo Cultural and Heritage facilities including wayfinding
• £103,320 towards Green and Blue Infrastructure including improvements/provision public open space and facilities, improvements/provision of bridleways/public rights of way • £48,300 towards SAMMS plus
• £194, 516 towards further infrastructure improvements in the area.
b) Conditions 1 – 26 as set out in the report for the reasons stated in the report, and additional condition 27 as follows:
27 Prior to first use of the proposed development details of the following highway works shall be submitted to and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority:
The approved details shall thereafter be implemented in full prior to first occupation of the development.
Reason: to ensure the development preserves conditions of highway safety, pedestrian safety and the free flow of traffic, in accordance with Policies T1, T2 and T3 of the Medway Local Plan 2003.