title="Boxley Parish Council in Kent">

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News  »  MC/19/0765 Planning Application - Land at East Hill - UPDATE

   MC/19/0765 Planning Application - Land at East Hill - UPDATE    May 9, 2019

Boxley Parish Council has submitted the following objection to Medway Council. There is still time to make your comments known. The deadline for comments is 12 May ...

MC/19/0765 Outline planning application with some matters reserved (appearance, layout, scale and landscaping) for construction of up to 800 dwellings, primary school, supporting retail space of up to 150sqm and GP surgery with associated road link between North Dane Way and Pear Tree Lane and other road infrastructure, open space and landscaping. Land at East Hill Chatham Kent.

Objection - Reasons for refusal:

1. The proposed development will be on greenfield land that is a substantial tract of undeveloped land extending from the North Downs as a green wedge into the heart of the urban area.

The area:
• Provides a wider landscape setting for Capstone Farm Country Park.
• Contributes to the setting of the Kent Downs AONB to the south and the M2 motorway.
• Contributes significantly to informal open space needs of the communities which adjoin it.
• Prevents coalescence of Lordswood/ Princes Park/Walderslade and Hempstead.

It is considered that development would be contrary to BNE25 Development in the Countryside, BNE34 Areas of Local Landscape Importance.

2. The likely proximity to wildlife habitats, ancient woodland and woodlands, with the associated lighting and activity and likelihood of informal and harmful recreational use, of the proposed houses and gardens, will further adversely impact on flora and fauna habitats and the visual amenity to the wider area. The proposal is therefore considered contrary to the provisions of paragraph 118 of the NPPF 2012 and BNE37: Wildlife Habitats.

3. It will have an unacceptable visual and sensory impact on the rural character of the area. The importance of which is identified in the Medway classification of it as an Area of Local Landscape Importance. It is considered that development will be contrary to section (ii) of BNE1: General Principles for build development.

4. It is an incongruous and out of character incursion of built development into undeveloped countryside which will result in the irretrievable loss of agricultural land.

5. This site will generate significant amounts of traffic all of which will need to use the current local highway infrastructure which as best can be described as being unable to cope with current levels, especially along Princes Avenue and also the roads linking the site to Chatham and Gillingham. There will be an unacceptable increase in the localised congestion that is already being experienced and a negative impact on road safety for pedestrians, cyclists and other road users. Vehicles to the south of the main site are likely to travel through Lordswood, again causing impacting on the local roads.

Walderslade Woods Road will be used to access the M2 at Junction 3 and the A229 for traffic wishing to access the M20, and the parish council is of the opinion that the infrastructure will not cope. The development of the Lower Thames Crossing will result in a massive increase in vehicular movements at junction 3, especially of HGVs. KCC has already identified that the roundabouts at junction 3 are operating beyond design capacity.

Access to Maidstone will be via Boxley Village using a C road that is already heavily used. Other roads in the area, Westfield Sole and Harp Farm Road, are already used way beyond their capacity as they are little more than country lanes. It is an everyday occurrence for traffic to queue before the entrance to Boxley Village, sometimes from the top of Lidsing Hill, and to find a continuous queue from the village through to Penenden Heath at am peak times and the reverse back to Boxley and beyond at pm peak.
It is considered that the development will be contrary to BNE2 Amenity Protection (iii) Activity levels & traffic generation.

6. In the absence of legal agreement being in place to secure developer contributions in connection with education, health, recreation and community services, the development will place additional demands on local services without provision first being in place to ensure that the additional demands placed on these services are being met. The proposal will therefore result in an intensified use of these facilities to the detriment of existing users. The proposed development is close to the administrative boundary with Kent and Maidstone and these areas will be adversely impacted upon so section 106 payments should also be used outside of the Medway boundary.

7. The area is within the setting of the North Downs AONB and is also a water catchment area so development will potentially have an adverse impact on both.


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