Councillor set to object to plans for 82 new homes in Summerhill

Reporter:

Steve Craddock

PLANS to build more than 80 new homes in Summerhill will be too much for the village’s roads, a councillor has warned.

A planning application received by Wrexham council on August 2 requests permission to build 82 homes – including the provision of affordable housing – on land West of Top Road in the village.

A diagram clarifies the 13.5 acre site site sits alongside Moss Wood, to the south of Westminster Rise/Bryn San Stefan.

Other works proposed as part of the development include new access, realignment and improvement to Top Road and the formation of a public open space.

But despite proposed measures to improve Top Road, such as the provision of a footpath and the widening of the road itself, Gwersyllt West councillor Gwenfair Jones said she has concerns over the impact additional traffic would have.

She said: “I’m not happy about it – as ward councillor I will be objecting.

“The main reason is the road up to Summerhill is just not suitable for it and I don’t think the infrastructure is there.

“We’re already having 54 houses built in Boozey Field and if you take into consideration the fact that each house is supposed to have about two cars average, the extra will be too much.”

A design and access statement by land and development consultants Fieldcrest Associates LLP, submitted with the plans, states: “The site lies within the settlement and close to the services and facilities within Summerhill and Gwersyllt.

“The proposed development will be accessed by a safe and efficient vehicular access arrangement and can be adequately serviced.

“There is no evidence to suggest that the proposals would have an adverse effect on road safety or the number of accidents in the vicinity.

“A framework travel plan will be implemented to encourage the use of non-car modes to take advantage of the sustainable travel accessibility credentials of the site.

“There are no listed buildings in the vicinity of the site, nor is the site within or adjacent to a conservation area.

“The properties in the local area are an eclectic mix of house designs and materials. The proposed buildings have been designed to reflect the scale and character of the properties in the vicinity.

“The layout of the site has been carefully considered following ongoing discussions with officers of the council’s planning team.

“Each property will have its parking area immediately adjacent to ensure ease of movement into the properties and the spaces will be provided in a mix of tarmacadam and paviours for ease of movement/access.

“The site is carefully designed to offer the maximum possible accessibility for users and visitors.

“The proposed dwellings would provide natural surveillance and security for the roadways, footpaths, open spaces, gardens and parking areas within the site.”

The plans also include proposals for the realignment of the Summerhill Road, Top Road and Bottom Road junction.

The document continues: “The Summerhill/Bottom Road junction with Top Road sits on the eastern boundary of the site.

“Top Road runs at an acute angle which creates a substandard junction in terms of its width, alignment and visibility as shown below.

“The scheme proposes to re-align Top Road so that it sits at 90 degree to Summerhill/Bottom Road. The new Top Road would sweep into the site and rejoin the existing Top Road creating a safer road junction.

“The provision of the improved road junction will act as a natural traffic calming measure and considerably reduce traffic speeds within the local area which will improve traffic safety in the vicinity.”

Cllr Jones added she did not feel the outlined road widening or junction re-aligning proposals would help and said she was also concerned about what lay beneath the site itself. She said: “There is a coal and railway tunnel under the field so it is not fit to build on – there needs to be a very thorough mining inspection of the area. I’ve got big concerns.”

A coal mining ground investigation and risk assessment by a company named E3P, submitted with the plans, states: “Investigation of the mine shafts has confirmed the mine shafts do not encroach on the proposed development site.

“Due to the fact that no development is intended within 10-15m of the northern boundary, no further action is required in relation to the mine shafts.

“It is considered that the proposed development is not any unacceptable risk from instability from shallow coal workings.

“However, it should be noted that due to the location of the disused tunnel beneath the site at a depth of circa 20m, which remains intact but structurally unsound, a risk of instability to the proposed development still exists and the tunnel will either require stabilisation by grouting or a stand-off no build zone will need to be applied to the proposed development.”

Email:

steve.craddock@nwn.co.uk

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