Princes Park Ward
Demolition of existing dwelling, double garage and outbuildings and erection of 20 dwellings with associated infrastructure, access, car parking, play area provision and landscaping.
The Planning Manager outlined the application in detail for the demolition of the existing dwelling, double garage and outbuildings and erection of 20 dwellings with associated infrastructure, access, car parking, play area provision and landscaping.
The Planning Manager confirmed that the initial application, MC/21/0922, was for 39 units which had been negotiated down to 24 units and the current application was for 20 units. The application had integrated parking, the housing standards were met and the proposed scheme would not dominate neighbouring properties which allowed for a better relationship with neighbours.
Condition 14 stated a Landscape Management Plan would be submitted and the site would then be managed by a Management Company who would maintain the trees. Balancing the loss of the biodiversity and the 5-year land supply issue, Officers had taken this all into account and had recommended approval subject to the Section 106 contributions as set out in the report.
The Committee considered the application and the Planning Manager confirmed that bricks being used for the development would be in keeping with the local area.
A Member was concerned with the Section 106 contributions and asked if more contributions could be given to the local area rather than going to the Great Lines Heritage Park. Princes Park required more funding for extra bins and trees, could that money be better spent in this specific area. More emphasis could be given to Kingfisher Playground and the Kingfisher Underpass as these areas were situated very near to the site and could be more beneficial to the local neighbourhood.
The Head of Planning explained he had discussed this with the Planning Manager and Green Space Officer and under the terms of Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act, the £54,466.166 contribution for open space facilities within the Princes Park Ward and Capstone Country Park could potentially be allocated to those two areas, in consultation with the Ward Councillors. The 5% contribution totalling £2,866.64 towards the Great Lines Heritage Park was a Medway wide benefit and was compliant with the adopted Developer Contributions guide. The £4,900 towards public realm improvements at Chatham Town Centre, was recommended due to Chatham being the main centre serving Medway, but this could be reallocated to public realm improvements in the local area in discussion with the Ward Councillors. Members thought using the public realm money to plant additional trees would be beneficial to the community.
A Member suggested some of the contributions could be allocated to improving the junction of Swift Crescent and Lordswood Lane. The Highways Consultant confirmed they could look at anti-skid provisions as part of the S106 due to the steep slope of the road and junction.
The Planning Manager confirmed, that under condition 18, the Climate Change Statement covered air source heat pumps.
The Head of Planning and Planning Manager confirmed that with additional tree planting, the biodiversity net gain would be greater with the proposed 20 units rather than the 39 and the additional landscaping would be managed by a Management Company and would be reviewed. A Biodiversity Net Gain Officer had recently been employed jointly with Medway and Kent County Council and their role, when the Environment Act was implemented in November 2023, would be to look at sites where 10% biodiversity was not possible and look at providing that requirement elsewhere. The requirement for 10% biodiversity was not yet in place.
Following a Member’s question, the Highways Consultant confirmed that a Transport Statement had been provided by the applicant which included pedestrian and cycling traffic and although there would be increase in vehicle traffic it had no direct impact on the highways network.
The Head of Planning confirmed that as part of the S106 contributions the following could be amended:
a) ix: £4,900 towards the public realm improvements at Chatham
Town Centre, could be re-allocated to public realm improvements in the vicinity of the site and in consultation with the Ward Councillors
x: to include the anti-skid provisions.
Approved subject to:
a) The applicant entering into a legal agreement under the terms of Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to secure the following contributions:
i. £57,332.80 green space contribution. Of which:
£54,466.16 for open space facilities within Princes Park Ward and Capstone Country Park £2,866.64 towards the Great Lines Heritage Park.
ii. £120,723.15 Education contribution. Of which:
£30,985.80 for nursery provision £26,076.34 for primary provision within 2 miles of development site or SEND education within Medway. £60, 261.80 for secondary provision £3,399.21 for sixth form provision within Medway.
iii. £14,209.20 health contribution towards contribution towards extension/refurbishment or upgrading of existing proactive premises within the vicinity or contribution to a new facility.
iv. £3,888.40 towards waste provision, improvements and promotion.
v. £1,759.80 towards Youth Provision for you people between 8-10 and up to 25 with disabilities within the Chatham area.
vi. £4,117.40 towards community facilities within the vicinity of the site.
vii. £3,711 towards equipment and facilities at Libraries in the vicinity.
viii. £5,471 towards improvements to Sports Provision at Medway Park.
ix. £4,900 towards public realm improvements in the vicinity of the site and in consultation with the Ward Councillors.
x. £10,000 highway contribution to improve aid pedestrian movements within the vicinity including anti-skid provisions on the junction between Swift Crescent and Lordswood Lane.
xi. £5,241.72 towards strategic measures in respect of the coastal North Kent Special Protection Area.
xii. Meeting the Council’s costs.
b) Conditions 1 to 26 as set out in the report for the reasons stated in the report.