To consider the attached report.
The Assistant Director (Development Management) presented a report with regard to a proposed residential infill comprising twelve residential dwelling houses with associated off-street parking, garden space and external landscaping at The Lodge, Woolston Hall, Chigwell.
Members noted that the application been considered by Area Plans Sub-Committee South at its meeting on 27 June 2018, at which time it had been referred to the District Development Management Committee for consideration with a recommendation that planning permission be refused in accordance with the recommendation of the Assistant Director (Development Management), on the application of the minority reference procedure set out in the Council’s constitution (Rule M2).
The Assistant Director (Development Management) reported that the application site was an open parcel of land to the northwest of The Lodge, with its southwestern boundary being an access road to Woolston Manor. Members were advised that the north-eastern boundary of the site was an avenue leading to a leisure complex and that a building and a former motel accommodating flats was situated to the northwest of the site. The Assistant Director (Development Management) reported that site was off the highway of Abridge Road, between the village of Abridge and Chigwell and was within the Green Belt. Members noted that trees along the avenue to the northeast of the application site were the subject of Tree Preservation Orders and that The Lodge was a locally listed building, with the northernmost boundary of the site being 120m from the Listed Building.
The Assistant Director (Development Management) reported that the proposed dwellings would be laid out in four terraces each of three houses, running north/south, parallel with and facing the vehicular access to Woolston Hall. Members were advised that each terrace would have its own appearance, whilst also providing overall unity of design to all four and that each of the houses would have three storeys, an integral garage and four bedrooms and an area of communal open space at the southernmost end of the site.
The Committee was advised that the main issue with regard to the proposed development was considered to be Green Belt policy. Other considerations included the provision of affordable housing, the implications of the Submission Version of the Epping Forest District Local Plan, the affect of the development on the setting within the landscape, sustainability, the quality of the design in terms of appearance, highway matters, the possible affect on heritage assets, the impact on neighbouring properties and whether the proposal would offer adequate amenity to future occupiers. The Assistant Director (Development Management) reported that a financial contribution for the provision of off-site affordable housing of £1,624,533 had been offered by the applicant, which had been verified by a consultant acting for the Council. Members were advised however, that no legal agreement had been submitted as part of the application and that Policy I1A required that, in appropriate circumstances, a legal agreement be in place prior to the grant of planning permission.
The Assistant Director (Development Management) reported that the proposal was considered to be contrary to Green Belt policy, failed to provide required on-site affordable housing; and did not represent sustainable development. Members were advised that the proposal was contrary to policy set out in both the adopted Local Plan and the Submission Version and would be detrimental to public amenity by virtue of failing to use natural resources prudently and failing to mitigate and adapt to climate change.
The Committee was advised that, as the proposed development would create new residential units within a distance of 6.2km of the Epping Forest Special Area of Conservation, policies DM2(C) and DM22 of the Submission Version of the Epping Forest District Local Plan required that any permission be subject to a financial contribution to towards access management and monitoring of visitors to Epping Forest in order to mitigate against the harmful impacts of development on air quality and biodiversity within the Forest. The Assistant Director (Development Management) advised members that the amount of such contribution had not currently been agreed.
That planning permission for residential infill comprising 12 no. residential dwelling houses with associated off-street parking, garden space and external landscaping at The Lodge, Woolston Hall, Chigwell be granted, subject to the completion of a legal agreement (Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990) by 31 March 2019 that ensures a contribution towards the provision of off-site affordable housing of £1,624,000 and appropriate financial contributions towards: (a) access management and monitoring of visitors to the Epping Forest Special Area of Conservation (SAC); (b) mitigation of air pollution in the vicinity of the Epping Forest SAC; and to the following conditions:
(1) The development hereby permitted must be begun not later than the expiration of three years beginning with the date of this notice;
(2) The development hereby permitted will be completed strictly in accordance with the approved drawings nos:
001.00 Site location plan, received 20/4/18;
DW-2017-371 Topographical survey;
Phase 1 Habitat Survey Report by Ethos Environmental Planning dated April 2017;
Arboricultural Impact Assessment by Waterman Infrastructure & Environment Limited dated September 2017; and
Preliminary Geo-Environmental Risk Assessment by Waterman Infrastructure & Environment Limited dated February 2017
(3) No development shall take place until details of surface water disposal have been submitted to and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority. The development shall be carried out in accordance with the Preliminary Geo-Environmental Risk Assessment by Waterman Infrastructure & Environment Limited dated February 2017 submitted with the application unless otherwise agreed in writing with the Local Planning Authority. The development shall be implemented in accordance with such agreed details;
(4) Access to the flat roof to the dining area as shown on the approved plans shall be for maintenance or emergency purposes only and the flat roof shall not be used as a seating area, roof garden, terrace, patio or similar amenity area;
(5) Notwithstanding the provisions of the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 as amended (or any other Order revoking, further amending or re-enacting that Order) no development generally permitted by virtue of Class A and E of Part 1 of Schedule 2 to the Order shall be undertaken without the prior written permission of the Local Planning Authority;
(6) No development shall commence until a scheme to enhance the nature conservation interest of the site has been submitted to and agreed in writing by the Local Planning Authority. The scheme shall include recommendations made in the Phase 1 Habitat Survey Report submitted April 2017 by Ethos Environmental Planning. The scheme shall include new native planting with new soft landscaping, provision of six bat boxes erected in suitable trees or on new buildings and bat sensitive lighting scheme during and post construction. The scheme shall be implemented in full prior to the occupation of the development hereby approved;
(7) No removal of hedgerows, trees or shrubs shall take place between 1st March and 31st August inclusive, unless a competent ecologist has undertaken a careful, detailed check of vegetation for active birds’ nests immediately before the vegetation is cleared and provided written confirmation that no birds will be harmed and/or that there are appropriate measures in place to protect nesting bird interest on site. Any such written confirmation should be submitted to the local planning authority;
(8) The proposed use of this site has been identified as being particularly vulnerable if land contamination is present, despite no specific former potentially contaminating uses having been identified for this site. Should any discoloured or odorous soils be encountered during development works or should any hazardous materials or significant quantities of non-soil forming materials be found, then all development works should be stopped, the Local Planning Authority contacted and a scheme to investigate the risks and / or the adoption of any required remedial measures be submitted to, agreed and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority prior to the recommencement of development works. Following the completion of development works and prior to the first occupation of the site, sufficient information must be submitted to demonstrate that any required remedial measures were satisfactorily implemented or confirmation provided that no unexpected contamination was encountered;
(9) No development shall take place until the applicant has secured the implementation of a programme of archaeological work in accordance with a written scheme of investigation which has been submitted by the applicant and approved in writing by the Planning Authority;
(10) No development shall take place, including site clearance or other preparatory work, until full details of both hard and soft landscape works (including tree planting) and implementation programme (linked to the development schedule) have been submitted to an approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority. These works shall be carried out as approved. The hard landscaping details shall include, as appropriate, and in addition to details of existing features to be retained: proposed finished levels or contours; means of enclosure; car parking layouts; other minor artefacts and structures, including signs and lighting and functional services above and below ground. The details of soft landscape works shall include plans for planting or establishment by any means and full written specifications and schedules of plants, including species, plant sizes and proposed numbers /densities where appropriate. If within a period of five years from the date of the planting or establishment of any tree, or shrub or plant, that tree, shrub, or plant or any replacement is removed, uprooted or destroyed or dies or becomes seriously damaged or defective another tree or shrub, or plant of the same species and size as that originally planted shall be planted at the same place, unless the Local Planning Authority gives its written consent to any variation;
(11) If any tree, shrub or hedge shown to be retained in accordance with the details approved in condition 10 above is removed, uprooted or destroyed, or dies, or becomes severely damaged or diseased within 3 years of the completion of the development, another tree, shrub or hedge of the same size and species shall be planted within 3 months at the same place, unless the Local Planning Authority gives its written consent to any variation. If within a period of five years from the date of planting any replacement tree, shrub or hedge is removed, uprooted or destroyed, or dies or becomes seriously damaged or defective another tree, shrub or hedge of the same species and size as that originally planted shall, within 3 months, be planted at the same place;
(12) No development, including works of demolition or site clearance, shall take place until a Tree Protection Plan Arboricultural Method Statement and site monitoring schedule in accordance with BS:5837:2012 (Trees in relation to design, demolition and construction - recommendations) has been submitted to the Local Planning Authority and approved in writing. The development shall be carried out only in accordance with the approved documents unless the Local Planning Authority gives its written consent to any variation;
(13) An electric vehicle charging point shall be provided for each of the approved dwellings prior to first occupation;
(14) Prior to first occupation measures shall be incorporated within the development to ensure a water efficiency standard of 110 litres (or less) per person per day;
(15) All construction/demolition works and ancillary operations, including vehicle movement on site which are audible at the boundary of noise sensitive premises, shall only take place between the hours of 07.30 to 18.30 Monday to Friday and 08.00 to 13.00 hours on Saturday, and at no time during Sundays and Public/Bank Holidays unless otherwise agreed in writing by the Local Planning Authority;
(16) No construction works above ground level shall take place until documentary and photographic details of the types and colours of the external finishes have been submitted to and approved by the Local Planning Authority, in writing. The development shall be implemented in accordance with such approved details;
(17) Details of all walls, fences, gates and other means of enclosure to the residential development shall be submitted for approval by the Local Planning Authority in writing prior to any development above ground level, and the development shall be implemented in accordance with such approved details.
Immediately following the voting on a motion that planning permission for the proposed development be granted, five members of the Committee referred the application to the Council for determination on the application of the minority reference procedure set out in the Constitution (Rule M2).