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Major road scheme 'under threat' from homes target

Published date: 24 June 2014 |
Published by: Romilly Scragg 
Read more articles by Romilly Scragg  Email reporter


 

A MAJOR road development could be under threat because of Welsh Government housing targets, councillors have warned.

A planning application is expected to be submitted to Flintshire Council for at least 40 homes on land in Broughton where a major traffic interchange is expected to be built in the coming years.

Bloor Homes, which is already building 280 houses in Broughton, is expected to ask for permission to build another 40 homes on land councillors thought had been safeguarded for a new slip road from Broughton Shopping Park to the A55.

Councillors say the site is in open countryside and is not not on land designated for housing in council land use strategy documents.

Broughton Community Council clerk Noel Barnes said he thought Flintshire Council planners would be likely to refuse any application for houses on the site.

At a meeting in October, he said planners were “bullish” about the council’s robust policies and would be confident in being able to uphold a refusal if developers appealed the decision. They said would safeguard the land for the hoped interchange.

But since the introduction of new Welsh Government housing targets which mean Flintshire does not have sufficient housing supply coming in over the next five years, Mr Barnes said planners had “changed their tune dramatically” and were afraid the Welsh Government could overrule a refusal decision.

They were likely to do so on the basis there was no firm proposals in place for the new interchange, coupled with the need for more new housing in the area, he said.

Flintshire councillor for Broughton South and cabinet member Derek Butler said Broughton had already taken on more than its fair share of the county’s new build homes under current Flintshire planning regulations.

Andrew Farrow, Flintshire Council’s chief officer for planning and environment, confirmed the land in question for the possible housing development was outside the settlement boundary.

He said: “The council is more than aware of the importance of this site in relation to the future of Broughton.

“For this reason, we will continue to resist any proposals for housing on the land and continue to raise awareness at the highest level of the threat proposed by such development.”

A Welsh Government spokesman said: “To ensure local planning authorities have a supply of housing land to meet the requirements of their area, the Welsh Government requires all local planning authorities to maintain a five year supply of deliverable sites and to monitor this on an annual basis.

“Local planning authorities are required to identify deliverable sites as part of a settlement strategy in their development plans.

“If insufficient housing is being built to fulfil the objectives of the strategy, then it is for the local planning authority to review whether they have the right housing sites in their plan and delete any sites that are not deliverable as part of a plan review.”

For more news from across the region visit newsnorthwales.co.uk

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