Planning Application: 16/05898/FUL
Please find our following comments on the above application.
To ascertain local views on the proposals we undertook an extensive survey and the results of that are attached in a separate document. We would wish these comments and views of the community to be considered in detail in relation to the assessment of this application.
As can be seen the exercise enjoyed a good level of response with over 269 individual submissions. The overall results indicate around 55% objecting to the proposals, 30% supporting, with 15% neutral. As a Community Council we feel it more appropriate to comment on the application rather take a position ourselves, but feel the result reflects broad support for housing development in principal, offset by a number of concerns about relevant planning matters raised in the application, including the detailed design of the proposals.
Many people were supportive of developing housing on brownfield land, welcoming it as a good use for the site in an area that would benefit from more housing and affordable housing in particular. However numerous concerns were also raised most notably regarding: traffic impacts and parking; the impact on local services and infrastructure; the density of the development.
As part of the survey we invited comments and received many varied suggestions for possible improvements to the proposals, the most common relating to: reducing the density; reducing the heights of the flats; more and better greenspace provision; better traffic management; the choice of materials and matters related to cycling and walking.
All comments and suggestions for improvements are in the attached summary of the consultation and we hope they will all be given due consideration. If concerns raised could be addressed through modifications or the suggested improvements, it may go some way to allay fears about the possible impacts of the development. Portobello Community Council would welcome consultation on any relevant further information that may be submitted or modifications to the proposal.
On a final note we’d like to thank the developers who kindly agreed to help with the costs incurred by our survey, and who also attended a drop-in event at Portobello Library during the consultation period. This proved a useful exercise, especially for local residents who were not so easily able to access material online, and may be worth encouraging in other instances. Whilst such events are standard in Pre-application Consultations, they seem less common during planning applications, where they nevertheless could be productive.
Sean Watters, Secretary, Portobello Community Council
CC: Cllr Ian Perry, Cllr Michael Bridgman, Cllr Maureen Child, Cllr David Walker