Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Town Hall

Contact: Ian Smith  Email: democraticservices@watford.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

22.

Apologies for absence

    Minutes:

    There were no apologies for absence.

23.

Disclosure of interests

    Minutes:

    There were no disclosures of interest.

24.

Minutes

    The minutes of the meeting held on 29 July, will be agreed, but signed at the next non-virtual meeting.

Conduct of the meeting

The committee will take items in the following order:

 

1.      All items where people wish to speak and have registered with Democratic Services.

2.      Any remaining items the committee agrees can be determined without further debate.

3.      Those applications which the committee wishes to discuss in detail.

25.

20/00554/FULM - 54 Clarendon Road, Watford, WD17 1DU pdf icon PDF 544 KB

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Principal Planning Officer (AC) presented his report to the committee. 

     

    The Chair then invited local resident, Mrs Aldridge to address the committee. 

     

    Mrs Aldridge explained that her house was next to the proposed development and she expressed concern about the height of the proposed building and the subsequent loss of privacy and light, with clear views into her house.  She asked for reassurance that the new building would actually have obscured glass to the specified 1.8 metres as although this was supposed to have been the case for the existing building, it was not the case. 

     

    She expressed concern that the annex at the bottom of her garden would be especially vulnerable to being overlooked, as would her garden. 

     

    She pointed out that the existing trees were supposed to be no more than 15 metres tall, but were more like 30 metres tall and reduced the amount of light into her garden. 

     

    She added that she was also concerned about the potential for noise disturbance.  Mrs Aldridge concluded by seeking clarification about the exact dimensions of the proposed new development.  

     

    The Chair invited the Principal Planning Officer to address the points Mrs Aldridge had raised.  The Principal Planning officer clarified the dimensions of the buildings and explained that there was a condition for obscured glass up to 1.8 metres on the rear elevation.  He added that the southern wing had the same condition. 

     

    A sunlight assessment had been carried out and due to the orientation of the buildings, there would be no loss of sunlight.  He added that as part of the discussions between the developers and planners, the northern wing had been reduced in size and moved back to behind the flank wall of 16E St John’s Road.

     

    The Chair then asked Ms Ailish Collins, the senior planner on behalf of Canada Life, to address the committee. 

     

    Ms Collins gave a very brief history of the site and that it had been very effectively managed by Canada Life for a number of years.  The existing building was underused and so this application had been submitted to bring the building up to date and increase usage.  The original application from 2019 had been amended in consultation with Watford Borough Council to minimise any effects on the residents of St John’s Road.  The new scheme provided new and improved office accommodation for over 400 people and an efficient and sustainable building with an associated positive effect on Watford. 

     

    The Chair thanked Ms Ailish and commented that he welcomed the fact that the existing building was being largely retained.  The developer had gone to great lengths to reduce the impact on neighbours.  It was an attractive design and he could see no reason to refuse. 

     

    The Chair then invited comments from the committee. 

     

    Councillor Bell stated that whilst he agreed that the design was attractive, he asked if the developer could meet with Mrs Aldridge to provide her with some reassurance.  The Chair endorsed this suggestion and added that matters such  ...  view the full minutes text for item 25.

26.

20/00510/FULM - Brightwell Court, Brightwell Road, Watford, WD18 0HP pdf icon PDF 429 KB

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Principal Planning Officer (AC), summarised his report to the meeting.

     

    The Chair noted that there were no speakers against the application and invited Mr Ransford Stewart, the agent for the applicant, to address the committee. 

     

    Mr Stewart gave a brief history of the site and Watford Community Housing Trust’s (WCHT) involvement with it.  He explained that the current quality of accommodation was not up to standard.  He assured the committee that the new homes would be owned and managed by WCHT, with the new homes being offered to those who desperately needed them. 

     

    Consultation had been carried out via the web and also a postcard drop.  There had been revisions to the application, following the consultation.  One of the particular concerns was access to the rear of nearby properties.  This was assured, with licences being offered free of charge to residents. 

     

    The design was of a high quality and although there were four storeys, the design stepped down towards the existing properties.  The high quality brick design had been amended following consultation with the urban design manager.

     

    Mr Ransford briefly addressed the issue of parking and stated that there were fewer flats, so it was possible that parking may even reduce. 

     

    The Chair thanked Mr Ransford and commented that he also liked the transition in scale of the buildings and the brickwork banding.  He added that he felt the changes in Hagden Lane, reinforced the building line on the road. 

     

    However, the Chair criticised the illogical break-up of the blocks, with different bricks.  In particular, he voiced his dislike of the grey bricks as he felt they were not sympathetic with the nearby buildings. 

     

    The Chair then invited comment from the committee. 

     

    Councillor Bell stated that he had considerable reservations about the four storeys and certain aspects of the design.  He expressed concern about the additional height impinging on the sunlight to surrounding properties.  He agreed with the Chair that the grey brick was a poor design feature and asked if this could be changed. 

     

    He added that in his opinion the fourth storey would alter the building line.  Also four parking spaces was insufficient and there should be at least eight.  The Chair invited the Principal Planning Officer to comment on the issues that had been raised. 

     

    The Principal Planning Officer stated that he would speak to the architect regarding the use of a lighter tone of bricks.  The Interim Head of Planning and Building Control agreed with this course of action. 

     

    Other councillors voiced their dislike of the “gloomy” grey brick. 

     

    There followed a discussion about continued access to the side and rear of nearby premises.  The Principal Planning Officer replied that all access arrangements with WCHT would continue. 

     

    Councillor Johnson observed this development was entirely social rented units and exactly what the committee had been asking for and exactly what was desperately needed by many people in the town.

     

    Councillor Sharpe commented that although the building was taller, there sometimes had to be compromises to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 26.

27.

20/00717/GPDO - Watford North Railway Station, Bushey Mill Lane pdf icon PDF 518 KB

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chair introduced the item to the committee and invited the Development Team Leader to present his report. 

     

    The Chair thanked the Development Team Leader for his report and reminded the committee that only the siting and appearance were to be discussed. 

     

    In response to a question from Councillor Watkin, the Development Team Leader explained that most telecommunications masts were now shared amongst providers.  Whilst this reduced the number of masts required, the new 5G antennas had a shorter range than older iterations, so generally more masts were needed to deal with the range and the increased usage of phones and data. 

     

    There was a short discussion around 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G.  It was acknowledged that we all used and needed our mobile phones. 

     

    The Chair then proposed a vote that prior approval be granted subject to the conditions contained in section 8 of the officer’s report. 

     

    In accordance with Standing Committee Procedure Rules, paragraph 4.2, Councillor Jeffree requested that it be recorded in the minutes how members cast their votes.

     

    Those members voting for the motion:

    Councillors Bell, Collett, Jeffree, Johnson, Mills, Pattinson, Sharpe, Smith and Watkin.

     

    Those members voting against the motion:

    None.

     

    The motion was declared to be CARRIED unanimously.

     

    RESOLVED –

     

    That the prior approval be granted, subject to the following conditions.

     

    1.    The development to which this permission relates shall be begun within a period of five years commencing on the date of this permission.

     

    2.    The mast and shroud shall be coloured light grey (unless otherwise agreed in writing by the Local Planning Authority) and shall be retained as such at all times.

     

    3.    The development shall be carried out in accordance with the following drawings, unless otherwise approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority:

     

    100A, 200B, 201B, 300A, 301B

     

28.

20/00541/VAR - 112-114, The Parade pdf icon PDF 395 KB

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chair introduced the item to the committee and invited the Development Team Leader to present his report. 

     

    The Chair thanked the Development Team Leader and invited comments from the committee. 

     

    Councillor Smith asked about the lack of interest in the project, from providers.  He also asked about the smaller shared amenity space (roof garden). 

     

    The Development Team Leader explained that there might be various reasons why providers were not previously interested in this scheme, but the best course of action was still for the applicant to seek providers to secure on-site provision.  In the event this was not successful, a commuted sum would be paid as set out in the report.

     

    Roof gardens are not particularly successful and were often under-used.  They were not specifically sought by the Council but some developers included them in their schemes. There was no objection to the reduction in this space. 

     

    Councillor Bell asked if WCHT had expressed an interest in the project. 

     

    The Development Team Leader commented that they had been approached, but felt this was not for them.  He hypothesised that this might have been because as constructed, some of the flats were sub-standard in size.  The current plans had increased the sizes and were now compliant and this might generate more interest. 

     

    The Chair then proposed a vote that planning permission be approved, subject to the conditions in Section 8 of the officer’s report.

     

    In accordance with Standing Committee Procedure Rules, paragraph 4.2, Councillor Jeffree requested that it be recorded in the minutes how members cast their votes.

     

    Those members voting for the motion:

    Councillors Bell, Collett, Jeffree, Johnson, Mills, Pattinson, Sharpe, Smith and Watkin.

     

    Those members voting against the motion:

    None.

     

    The motion was declared to be CARRIED unanimously.

     

    RESOLVED –

     

    That planning permission be granted, subject to the following conditions:

    Section 106 Heads of Terms

     

    i)          To secure 5 units on the first floor of the development to be Affordable Housing units for affordable rent comprising 4 x 1 bedroom and 1 x 2 bedroom units;

    ii)         Practical completion of the approved works to be completed within a period of 6 months from the granting of planning permission;

    iii)        No more than 9 units of Open Market Housing units to be occupied before the Owner has entered into a legally binding agreement with a Registered Provider in respect of the Affordable Housing units or paid the commuted sum referred to below;

    iv)        In the event the Affordable Housing units are not acquired by a Registered Provider within a period of 6 months after practical completion of the approved works, a commuted sum of £1,078,816 to be paid to the Council;

    v)        On payment of the commuted sum to the Council, the Affordable Housing units to be sold as Open Market units.

     

     

     

    Conditions

     

    1.         No dwelling shall be occupied until the internal works to the flats on the first, second and third floors have been carried out in full in accordance with the approved drawings.

     

    2.         The development  ...  view the full minutes text for item 28.

29.

20/00509/FULM 3 Rhodes Way pdf icon PDF 642 KB

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chair introduced the item to the committee and invited the Principal Planning Officer (AR) to present her report. 

     

    The Chair thanked the Principal Planning Officer for her report and invited comments from the committee. 

     

    As there were no comments, the Chair then proposed a vote that planning permission be approved, subject to the conditions in Section 8 of the officer’s report and the additional conditions in the update sheet.

     

    In accordance with Standing Committee Procedure Rules, paragraph 4.2, Councillor Jeffree requested that it be recorded in the minutes how members cast their votes.

     

    Those members voting for the motion:

    Councillors Bell, Collett, Jeffree, Johnson, Mills, Pattinson, Sharpe, Smith and Watkin.

     

    Those members voting against the motion:

    None.

     

    The motion was declared to be CARRIED unanimously.

     

    RESOLVED –

     

    That planning permission be granted, subject to the following conditions:

    1.         Time Limit

    The development to which this permission relates shall be begun within a period of three years commencing on the date of this permission.

     

    2.         Drawing numbers

    The development shall be carried out in accordance with the following drawings, unless otherwise approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority. The following drawings are hereby approved:

     

    18019-TP-001

    18019-TP-002

    18019-TP-003

    18019-TP-004

    18019-TP-005

    18019-TP-006

    18019-TP-007

    18019-TP-008 Rev A

    18019-TP-009

    18019-TP-010 Rev A

    18019-TP-011 Rev A

    18019-TP-012

    18019-TP-013

    18019-TP-014

    18019-TP-015

    18019-TP-016

    18019- Materials finishes

    18019-SK-025 Rev B

     

    3.         Materials

    The external surfaces of the development shall be finished in the materials as specified on approved drawings and in document ‘18019- Materials finishes’ unless otherwise agreed in writing by the Local Planning Authority.

     

    4.         Highways Condition 1- Construction Management Plan

    Prior to the commencement of the site works the applicant shall submit a construction management plan setting out details of any demolition works, removal of materials from site, parking for all contractors, sub-contractors, visitors and delivery vehicles and storage of materials to be approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority in consultation with the Highway Authority and those measures approved shall be maintained available for use at all times during the period of site works.

     

    5.         Highways Condition 2- Travel Plan

    Three Months prior to full use of the permitted development, a detailed Travel Plan for the site, based upon the Hertfordshire County Council document “Hertfordshire Travel Plan Guidance” and applicant’s framework Travel Plan, shall be submitted and approved in writing by the local planning authority in consultation with the Highway Authority. The approved Travel Plan shall always be implemented.

     

                6.         EA Condition 1 – Remediation

    No development approved by this planning permission shall commence until a remediation strategy to deal with the risks associated with contamination of the site in respect of the development hereby permitted, has been submitted to, and approved in writing by, the local planning authority. This strategy will include the following components:

    1. A site investigation scheme, based on (the submitted report: Phase 1 Contamination Assessment (MLM, reference: 777853-MLM-ZZ-XX-RP-J-0001, 08/07/2019) to provide information for a detailed assessment of the risk to all receptors that may be affected,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 29.

 

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