Planning matter

This should have been in our August-September issue as part of David Bard’s District Council report

A major new settlement at Great Chesterford

In late June, Uttlesford District Council, published its new draft Local Plan as part of the agenda for the Uttlesford Local Plan Working Group meeting on 22nd June. We were very concerned to see that the plan includes a new ‘garden community’ at Great Chesterford. This would comprise up to 5,000 dwellings located on a 256 Ha site, South East of the A11 and West of the A1301, just South of Stump Cross. 1,900 of these dwellings would be delivered by 2033. The site boundary is immediately adjacent to the boundary between Uttlesford and South Cambridgeshire and the proposal would have very significant effects on traffic on the A1301 and A505 creating even greater pressure on the A1301/A505 ‘McDonald’s’ roundabout and on M11 Junction 10. An accompanying traffic report suggests some improvements at these junctions It assumes that there would be a ‘modal shift’ from car to public transport, cycling or walking of 15% (currently 71.8% of journeys to work in Uttlesford are by private car or van; Source; 2011 census statistics at http://bit.ly/2t0GYRu ). Disappointingly, there are no proposals in the Uttlesford Local Plan to upgrade M11, Junction 9 to enable traffic travelling North to Cambridge to join at that point. So the main access to the M11 travelling North would be via the A1301 and A505 to Junction 10 at Duxford and the preferred route to Cambridge would be via the A11 and A1307.

The Local Plan is to be put out for consultation from 12th July to 4th September. A number of respondents including South Cambridgeshire and Sawston Parish Council have pointed out to Uttlesford that four weeks of this coincide with the August Summer holiday period and asked for an extension of four weeks into September (South Cambridgeshire gave a four week extension when its Local Plan consultation fell during August). Uttlesford responded by extending the consultation period from 29th August to 4th September.

The Local Plan can be accessed and representations made online at http://bit.ly/2td5n1A The relevant policy is SP7. The background documents including the transport assessment are included in the agenda papers for the Planning Policy Working Group meeting of 22nd June   http://bit.ly/2ualukE .