P14/V2873/O

Headline

Valley Park

Detail

Land to the West of Great Western Park development Didcot (in the parishes of Harwell and Milton)

Outline planning application for a residential development of up to 4,254 dwellings, mixed-use local centres, primary schools, sports pitches, community and leisure facilities, special needs school, open space and extensive green infrastructure, hard and soft landscaping, attenuation areas, diversions to public rights of way, pedestrian and vehicular access and associated works

(as amended by drawings and information accompanying letter from Agent dated 18 September 2015)

(as amended by drawings and information accompanying letter from Agent dated 10 March 2016)

(as amended by drawings and information accompanying letter from Agent dated 10 March 2016 and on 21 August 2019)

P14/V2873/O

Valley Park

Status Objects
Major application? Major
Registration Date January 20, 2015
Consultation Start Date January 20, 2015
Consultation End Date October 22, 2019
Target Decision Date October 27, 2019
PC Meeting Date October 8, 2019
PC Comments See Developments page
Original application discussed at meeting 2015-03-10,
Amendments first discussed at meeting 2015-10-06.
Response (objection) agreed at committee meeting 2015-10-27.
Draft of further response discussed at committee meeting 2016-03-29. Subject to corrections approved for submission by due date of 6 April. Objection. RESPONSE TO AMENDED APPLICATION Oct 2019 - NB Original comments on this application still apply - please see previous responses. Council objects to this application - Council has concerns about lack of healthcare provision, especially as it now appears that a crisis is looming locally because of an already overloaded healthcare system. Regular appointments in Didcot surgeries are currently running at a 5 week waiting period and, with doubts over the deliverability of a sufficient capacity site on GWP, it would be prudent to assign land in Valley Park in the event it is needed for this purpose. The amended design and access (DAS) statement raises serious concerns. The original approved road layout included segregated cycle tracks along the main route through Valley Park and this was actually one of the better features of this development. These plans have been dropped in this proposal in favour of throwing cyclists onto the main road with no protection. The developers claim a 20mph limit is sufficient but without sufficient engineering or enforcement this limit will be routinely exceeded, particularly on the main road through the site. This is already demonstrated in GWP where, despite bends and chicanes, the 20mph limit is widely ignored. This approach also contravenes the OCC cycling design standards which is clear that on Spine or Primary distributor roads, a minimum of stepped tracks are to be provided if the road serves more than 500 homes. This applies regardless of the speed limit, including 20mph and is due to the traffic volume expected. From the OCC cycling design standards, 2017. "2.2.6 Along such roads, sometimes referred to as spine roads, the minimum provisions for cycle users are stepped cycle tracks (sometimes called hybrid cycle lanes, terraced or similar) on each side of the road. This applies to any new road serving a new development where it connects together two existing roads and serves a development of greater than 500 houses. This also applies to smaller sites where these will ultimately form a larger overall development meeting these criteria." Table 1. also makes clear that stepped tracks would be the minimum expected provision for this type of road. Design of cycle paths/lanes does not adhere to the Walking & Cycling Design Guide – the design of the cycle paths/lanes should revert to original designs to give maximum protection to cyclists. Cycle paths should also be cohesive with neighbouring developments. Another major concern are the illustrative road layouts. B1-C, B2, C-D and A-B2. These appear to show cycle lanes/tracks in the door zone of car parking and is completely unacceptable. Either relocate the cycle tracks to the other side of the verge, remove the parking or widen the cycle tracks to allow safe space to pass parked cars. Where bus stops cross the cycle path, bus stop bypasses should be used to prevent buses and cyclists crossing paths. C-D has cycle tracks widths below the minimum specified in the cycling standards, it is completely unacceptable that on a blank canvas development anything narrower than the recommended width be provided. There are no on carriageway cycle tracks in this masterplan that meet the recommended width of 1.8m. Council has serious concerns about the design of the roundabout at Harwell Link Road as shown in the amended DAS. The construction of this roundabout severed the relatively easy pedestrian/cyclist route to/from Didcot, a section that is a key part of the major cyclist commuting route serving the Village, Harwell Campus and local schools. It is also popular with mobility scooter users going to/from GWP and Didcot. While traffic levels are low, the informal crossings on this roundabout are manageable. At busier periods however it can be harder to cross, especially for those who require a bit more time. The alternative that has been provided, a bridleway and signalised crossing, is so inconvenient that is is rarely used. The new plans include a 5 arm roundabout design that again directly contravenes the cycling design standards (3.3.5) with tangential design on every arm. This roundabout is designed for speed and, with the higher volume of traffic expected from Valley Park, this will make informal crossings completely unsuitable, provision of zebra crossings on the slower speed arms (all arms except the link road) would improve this design.. The current design completely ignore the needs of non-motorised users. There are no safe and convenient cycle paths/bridle paths, no pedestrian crossings on the Link Road arm of the roundabout, and turning angles are too shallow to slow traffic enough to allow safe passage for cyclists and pedestrians.
Neighbours?
Vale Decision Date
Vale Decision No decision yet
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