AND

APPLICATION NO: 12/P/2068/F

CASE OFFICER Peter Davey

APPLICANT: GE Oil & Gas

RECOMMENDATION SUMMARY:

Approval

PARISH/WARD: Wraxall and Long Ashton

WARD COUNCILLOR(S): Cllr Cook and Cllr Cave

TARGET DATE: 17/01/2013

APPLICATION: Creation of new car parking to provide 173 spaces related to the existing GE operation with associated bunding and landscaping

SITE ADDRESS: GE Oil & Gas, High Street, Nailsea

 

LOCATION PLAN: The following plan shows the general location of the site only and is for illustrative purposes. The circle identifies the location of the site and is not a representation of the site boundaries. The site boundaries and other details submitted with the application can be viewed on the council’s website at www.n-somerset.gov.uk. This map is based upon Ordnance Survey material with the permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of the controller of Her Majesty’s Stationery Office c. Crown copyright. Unauthorised reproduction infringes Crown copyright and may lead to prosecution or civil proceedings. North Somerset Council, LA09063L,2001

 


 

 


1.         12/P/2068/F  Creation of new car parking to provide 173 spaces related to the existing GE operation with associated  bunding and landscaping at GE Oil and Gas, High Street,

Nailsea

 

DEPARTURE APPLICATION

 

Procedure

 

The ward boundary between Nailsea North and West and Wraxall and Long Ashton wards runs through the applicant’s premises. The site itself lies within Wraxall and Long Ashton.  Therefore whilst the application falls within the jurisdiction of the North Area Committee it is being reported to the Central Area Committee for information.  A Committee site inspection has been arranged for 14 January.

 

The Site

 

The proposed development site is located to the north of the applicant’s premises that are situated on the north east fringe of Nailsea within an established commercial area. 

 

The application site is agricultural land laid to pasture that measures 0.88ha which slopes from south to north.  The site is screened and separated from an existing building in the south by a mature hedgerow mixed with mature deciduous trees and various native undergrowth species.  Between the site and the Bristol/Nailsea road to the east are two residential properties with associated outbuildings to the north and west there is no open countryside in agricultural use.

 

The Application

 

Permission is sought to create a car park to provide a maximum of 173 spaces accessed via an entrance off an existing car parking area which is accessed directly from the public highway.

 

The car park is to be constructed with hard paved surfaced circulation and access roads with parking bays constructed of consolidated aggregate on a geotextile membrane to facilitate free drainage.  It is designed to allow it to be removed in the future if required.  The construction of the access/circulation roads and parking bays involves the stripping of top soils and subsoils which are to be deposited on the car parking area's east and northern boundaries to form a 1.2 metre high bund, which it is to be planted with suitable native hedging species.  All existing hedging and trees to the field boundary are to remain and reinforced with additional tree planting.  Both pedestrian and vehicular access to the car parking area is through gates on the southern boundary to the existing car park.  The car parking area is to be illuminated by low level bollard lighting which will be used only during the proposed hours of operation of the car park which is to be between 06.30 and 19.00 hours.

 

Relevant Planning History

 

Year

Reference

Proposal

Decision

2012

12/P/2202/P

Replacement of existing single storey Portakabin with a 2 storey Portakabin for office accommodation

Awaited

2012

12/P1067/F

Siting of a Portakabin

Approved

2011

11/P/0042/F

Installation of a Portakabin building to be used as office accommodation

Approved

 

2010

10/P/1566/F

Installation of Portakabin Duplex building for office accommodation for a period of 5 years

Approved

2009

09/P1364/F

Erection of 4 no. two tiered Portakabins increased car parking, erection of a building, construction of a hardstanding for external storage

Approved

2008

08/P/1027/F

Erection of a single storey production building with link to existing industrial building.

Approved

 

2008

08/P/0702/F

Change of use from B8(open storage) to car parking associated with adjacent B2 use, including the construction of a vehicular access ramp and erection of boundary fence at Coates Industrial Estate

Approved

2005

05/P/0877

Erection of an industrial building. Construction of a gravel storage area, paved service yard and associated landscaping and earth banking

Approved

2003

03/P/3209/F

Erection of two storey portable buildings for office accommodation

Approved

2003

03/P/2345/F

Erection of two storey portable buildings for office accommodation

Approved

2001

01/P/1726/F

Erection of extension to existing production building

Approved

2000

00/P/1590/F

Erection of single storey extension to existing building for storage and assembly

Approved

2000

00/P/1488/F

Erection of single storey temporary building  for storage and assembly

Approved

 

Policy Framework

 

The site is located outside the settlement boundary of Nailsea within the Green Belt.

 

The main relevant policies are as follows:

 

Development Plan

 

North Somerset Core Strategy (adopted April 2012)

 

CS2

Delivering sustainable design and construction

CS3

Environmental impacts and flood risk management

CS4

Nature Conservation

CS6

North Somerset's Green Belt

CS11

Parking

CS12

Achieving high quality design and place making

CS20

Supporting a successful economy

CS31

Clevedon, Nailsea and Portishead

 

North Somerset Replacement Local Plan (NSRLP)(saved policies)(adopted March 2007)

 

Three NSRLP policies were not saved in March 2010. The Core Strategy supersedes some but not all of the remainder. It does not supersede the following policies which are relevant to this proposal:

 

GDP/1

Preferred locations for development

RD/3

Development in the Green Belt

E/5

Safeguarded Employment Area

E/7

Proposals for business development in the countryside

T/6

Parking standards

 

Other material policy guidance

 

National Guidance

 

The NPPF contains relevant guidance and the following sections and paragraphs are of particular relevance:

 

Core Planning Principle 1:   Building a strong, competitive economy

 

Core Planning Principle 9    Protecting Green Belt land

 

Consultations

 

Copies of representations received can be viewed on the council’s website.  This report contains summaries only.

 

Third Parties:  Seven letters of objection have been received.  The principal planning points made are as follows:

 

·                    The proposal is contrary to Employment and Green Belt development plan policies and no very special circumstances exist

·                    Alternative site is available at the Coates Industrial Estate

·                    Possible impact on archaeology

·                    Noise and disturbance to nearby residents

·                    Impact on local landscape.

 

Five letters of support have been received.  The principal planning points made are as follows:

 

·                    The proposal addresses a serious parking problem on local roads,

·                    The company provides employment

 

Wraxall and Failand Parish Council:    "The proposed site is in the Green Belt.  Councillors voted not to support the planning application."

 

Nailsea Town Council:  Recommend accept”.

 

Principal Planning Issues

 

The principal planning issues in this case are (1) The principle of the development in relation to Green Belt policy, (2) Impact on character of the area and openness of the Green Belt, (3) Impact on living conditions of nearby residents, (4) Highway/Transport implications, (5) Wildlife impacts and

(6) Archaeological impacts.

 

Issue 1: The principle of the development in relation to Green Belt policy

 

The application site is located in the Green Belt where only limited categories of development/uses are considered appropriate.

 

The definition of development includes the making of a material change of use of land. Government policy on Green Belt is set out in the National Planning Policy Framework and identifies categories of development appropriate to the Green Belt. Guidance set out in the NPPF is reflected, to a large degree, in NSRLP policy RD/3.  The NPPF indicates that engineering operations are not inappropriate in the Green belt provided they preserve the openness of the Green belt and do not conflict with the purposes of including land in the Green Belt.  Policy RD/3 states, inter alia, that changes in the use of the land is not inappropriate providing the use maintains openness and does not conflict with the purposes of including land in the Green Belt.

 

As with previous Green Belt policy, the NPPF further advises that inappropriate development is, by definition, harmful to the Green Belt and should not be approved except in very special circumstances and that circumstances will not exist unless the potential harm to the Green Belt by reason of inappropriateness, and other harm, is clearly outweighed by other considerations.

 

Very Special Circumstances

 

The applicant recognise that the proposal is in Green Belt terms inappropriate development and has submitted a planning statement that sets out ‘very special circumstances’ to justify an exception to Green Belt policy. In summary they are as follows:

 

Need

 

The applicant is major employer in North Somerset and is a world leader in advanced technology equipment and services for all segments of the oil and gas industry. Nailsea is the company’s global product centre and facility serves as a centre of excellence for the design, manufacture and testing of seabed production and controls equipment.

 

At the present time there are 573 people employed at the site, with 92 vacancies being currently being advertised and further employment opportunities being created between 2013-2015. Employment density of accommodation within the site is significantly above that for a ‘standard’ B2 use and therefore car parking requirements is significantly greater than normally needed.

 

There are 238 car parking spaces within the company’s site which are utilised by employees, contractors and visitors with a further additional 80 car parking spaces provided within the adjacent Coates Industrial Estate, under a licence with the owner of the estate. Notwithstanding this car parking provision there is significant under provision of parking for the number of people employed at the site. The impact of the lack parking within the site is evident in the surrounding streets, where a lack of on-street parking has resulted in the overflow of employee parking on surrounding roads, particularly Lodge Road, which has given rise to complaints from residents and occupiers within the area.

 

In recognition of the problem of on street parking and the consequential impact on residents and highway users the company have developed a number of measures to control and manage on-site parking and to maximise its use as well as formulating a Travel Plan, including the introduction of measures to reduce the need to travel by car and provide alternative means of transport. The measures includes, shift management, cycle to work, car sharing and car club schemes.

 

Notwithstanding the introduction of these measures there is still a significant shortfall in off- street parking that results in detrimental on- street parking even without the planned expansion in employee numbers at the site.

 

Lack of suitable long term alternative off site provision

 

The company engaged a firm of property surveyors to review the availability of land within one kilometre of the applicant’s site which would be available and suitable to provide car parking to meet existing and future car parking requirements. No available and suitable sites were found.

 

Temporary parking has been provided, under a licence, on the adjacent Coates Industrial Estate but is not considered by the company to be suitable for future provision for a number of reasons as follows:

 

1.         Due to ground level difference between the site a ramp access would need to be constructed to facilitate pedestrian and vehicular movements.  The provision of a ramp and link road would require the relocation of existing Customer Offices buildings and the reconfiguration of current access parking arrangements within the company’s site. The movement of vehicles through the existing GE Oil & Gas facility would cause security and health and safety issues as vehicles would have to navigate personnel, other vehicles and buildings.

 

2.         In the absence of direct access between the sites, the current temporary car park on the Coates Estate is accessed through the commercial estate via a road that also serves residential properties. In addition, access to the temporary car park is closed at 6pm by the landlord, with a requirement that all cars be removed from the site, a measure that inhibits its use by shift workers and therefore the economic growth of the company.  

 

3.         The cost of providing the ramp and the rental cost of land currently mean that it does not provide a viable option.

 

4.         The land on which the temporary car park is currently located site is designated in the Local Plan for redevelopment for employment use. The long term use of the land for car parking is not considered compatible with the designation.

 

Representations have been received from the owner of the Coates Estate, from whom the applicant currently has a licence to use an area land within the estate for car parking under planning permission granted in 2008. The case made by the owner for the use of this land is that it; is immediately adjacent to the company’s site, is readily accessible from the applicants premise, is capable of accommodating the required 173 car parking spaces and is available for development on long term basis. Furthermore, the development would make beneficial use of land that is under used and allocated in the NSRLP policy E/5 as a safeguarded employment site and its’ use would also conform with other employment policies in the plan and also employment polices set out in North Somerset Core Strategy.

 

The use of land within the estate has been given detailed consideration by the company and determined to be unsuitable for the reasons listed above. Policy E/5 of the NSRLP seeks to safeguard existing B1-B8 business employment areas as well as land identified on the proposals map from unrelated non B1-B8 development. Policy E/5 identifies only two safeguarded sites in Nailsea- 0.4 ha of land ABB High Street (GE Oil & Gas site) which is now developed and 0.7 ha of land at Southfield Road (Coates Estate), part of which is currently used for car parking by the applicant.  NSRLP policy E/4 policy permits proposal for business development within the four towns in the district and within the boundaries of settlements subject to a number of criteria that includes inter alia, the requirement to make efficient use of the site.

 

The Core Strategy carries forward the aims and objectives of the Local Plan and states under policy CS20 that in relation to Nailsea that new development will be supported primarily on allocated land with the key objective of improving self-containment and reducing out commuting.

 

It is considered, having regard to the aims, objectives and employment policies of the NSRLP and NSCS that the continued use and intensification of car parking of the land within the Coates Estate would not represent the most productive use of land allocated for the provision jobs for existing and future residents of Nailsea.

 

As set out above the proposed development does not fall within the definition of appropriate development in the Green Belt, therefore the primary consideration in determining this application is whether the harm by reason of inappropriateness and its further harm to the openness of the Green Belt is clearly outweighed by very special circumstances to justify exception to Green Belt policy.

 

The company is, as described above, a major employer in North Somerset and operates on a relatively small site, which is largely utilised for production. Production has grown over recent years and is planned to grow to meet demand in the next few years and beyond. Employment is projected, based on existing orders, to increase from 573 to some 700 employees by the end of 2013.

 

The Council’s aim, as stated in the Core Strategy is to deliver within environmental limits a prosperous economy.  The NSRLP seeks to ensure that North Somerset has a successful and diverse local economy and identifies, amongst others, the following objectives:

 

·        To work with others to sustain and create new employment and business opportunities particularly in growing modern sectors that includes high –tech and Research and Development.

·        To encourage and support the development of existing business in North Somerset to help to ensure the future prosperity of the area. 

 

The NPPF and recent ministerial statements also underline the importance of economic growth.  The NPPF states that local planning authorities should proactively drive and support sustainable economic development to deliver, inter alia, business and infrastructure and that every effort should be made objectively and then meet business and other development needs of an area.

 

It is evident that due to the high intensity of use of accommodation within the site and high employment generation which the site delivers, that existing car parking provision is inadequate to support the company’s existing operations and continued development and this has already led to the transfer of some jobs to a location outside the district. The applicant is an international company that has operational premises elsewhere in the UK and in other countries which could be developed in place of the facility at Nailsea if adequate car parking provision, commensurate with the existing and planned workforce, cannot be provided.

 

It is, therefore, recognised that that there is demonstrable need for car parking, to a level and to a standard required in terms of health and safety required by the company, to facilitate growth in production and resultant increase employment, and in accordance with the economic aims and priority objectives and policies  of the council as set out in the Core Strategy to ensure that sufficient parking is provided in new development to meet the needs of the users and to eliminate on street parking which is detrimental to highway safety.

 

In conclusion on this issue it is considered that these consideration amount to very special circumstances that clearly outweigh the harm by reason of inappropriateness any other harm to the openness of the Green Belt

 

Issue 2:  Impact on character of the area and openness of the Green Belt

 

The application site is relatively well contained by existing development to the west, south and east.  Whilst it can be seen when approaching Nailsea on the B 3130 Clevedon Road and from the public right of way that runs along the Land Yeo stream to the north, views of the site from these points are limited by a number of large trees on the site’s eastern boundary and the relatively level topography which is set above rising ground.

 

The development also includes the provision, of landscaped earth bunds to the northern and eastern car parking area boundaries, the planting of trees within the car park, together with planting of a native hedgerow and tree planning on the sites northern boundary. It is considered that these landscape measures and the fact the site is viewed against the backdrop of the urban fringe of Nailsea, comprising of large industrial buildings in this location, will ensure that the landscape character of the area and the impact on the openness will not be adversely affected and in this regard the development accords with NSCS policy CS5

 

The design of the car park is such that it could be removed as and when required.  As a consequence there is a safeguard against any permanent impact on the appearance of the area should the justification for the proposal change.  Planning conditions can also be imposed to require the removal of the car park and the restoration of the land should the company cease to require it for car parking.  In the first instance it is considered that any permission should be temporary to allow the matter to be kept under review.

 

Issue 3: Impact on living conditions of nearby residents

 

NSRLP policy GDP/3 and NSCS policy CS3 seeks to safeguard the living conditions of residents from development that would cause disturbance. The occupiers of two dwellings to the east of the site Jasmine Cottage and Old Jasmine Cottage, Clevedon Road, are most likely be affected by the development.

 

The site of the proposed car park is located some 29 metres from the rear of the dwellings, with the nearest car parking some 35 metres from the dwellings. The car parking area is to be contained in the north and east by a 1.2 m high bund of earth which is to be planted with native hedging species.  This bund will prevent views of parked cars from ground level and from ground floor windows of the dwellings. A row of semi- mature trees are also proposed in front of the bund which will limit longer range views of the car park from first floor windows of the dwellings.  The car parking is to be illuminated during hours of darkness by low level bollard lighting which are designed to minimise light pollution.  In addition to limiting views of the car park, the bund will act as a noise buffer shielding residents from vehicle movements taking place within the car park.

 

Given the separation distance of the car park from the nearby dwellings and other measures described above, together with the fact that the car is proposed only to be used between 6.30 am and 7.00 pm, it is considered that the living conditions of residents of the nearby dwellings will not be affected to a significant degree and therefore the development complies with NSRLP policy GDP/3 and NSCS policy CS3.

 

Issue 4: Highway/Transport implications

 

The use of the GE Oil and Gas premises is significantly more intensive, in terms of staff numbers, than a standard site. The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) would expect a standard B2 site with a floorspace of 8,973.5 m2 to employ up to 249 staff. The GE site currently employs 573 staff, which is an increase of 130% when compared to the HCA standard density.

 

Car Parking

 

The application proposes to provide 173 car parking spaces to accommodate existing car parking demand. The proposal includes the relocation of the existing 80 temporary spaces from the neighbouring industrial site to the application site.

 

Local maximum parking Standards are set out within policy T/6 of the North Somerset Replacement Local Plan which states that for B2 use, 1 car parking space should be provided per 50m2 of gross floor area. This equates to a requirement for the existing site to provide 179 car parking spaces. The existing on-site provision is 238 car parking spaces, which exceeds the number required by the NSRLP.

 

Policy CS11 of the adopted Core Strategy requires that a development provides adequate parking to meet the needs of the users. When compared with a standard employment density, the use of the existing site is 130% more intensive than a standard B2 site. The application is proposing to provide an additional 173 on-site car parking spaces equating to a total on-site provision of 411 spaces. This represents a 130% increase in car parking provision when compared with the required maximum car parking standard set out within the NSRLP. The proposed increase in car parking spaces is therefore proportional to the intensity of the use of the GE site and will help meet the needs of the site users.

 

Furthermore, on-street car parking to accommodate employee and visitor parking occurs on Lodge Lane when the existing on-site provision becomes fully occupied.  It is considered that the proposed development will therefore improve the existing situation by reducing the demand for on-street parking on Lodge Lane.

 

It is considered that the level of car parking proposed is wholly appropriate in relation to the existing use of the GE site and compliant with Policy CS11 of the Core Strategy and Policy T/6 of the NSRLP.


 

Issue 5: Wildlife impacts

 

The application is supported by a ‘Extended phase 1 Habitat  Survey’ which found, in summary, that there was no evidence of the site being inhabited or used to any significant degree by any protected species and that with the suggested appropriate mitigation the proposal will not have an unacceptable impact on biodiversity. The findings of the survey report and the suggested mitigation measures are accepted and it is considered the development accords with NSRLP policy ECH/11 and NSCS policy CS/4.

 

Issue 6: Archaeological impacts

 

There are no archaeological sites or structures recorded at this site, or for a buffer of 100m around it, on the North Somerset Historic Environment Record, or other sources contained within it.

 

One of the comments on this proposal raises the issue of the proximity of a Roman villa. This known site is 275m away from the edge of the proposal site, and is considered to be far away enough not to be a material consideration in this case under the terms in the NPPF. Information available regarding this is that it has been totally excavated in the 1940s, and geophysical surveys at the site by Bristol University revealed no further structures at the site. Further geophysical surveys by a local community archaeology group in the fields to the northwest of the application site also revealed no extension of the Roman building or structures or deposits connected with it.

 

Early OS plans (e.g. that of 1903) as ‘Allotment Gardens’. The concentrated digging involved in preparation of allotment plots means that any topsoil on the site will have been turned over, and any surviving archaeology at the site will only be below this. In view of the proposal to construct the car park by topsoil strip and use of geotechnical membrane as a basis for the car park construction will effectively protect any buried archaeology if it exists. In conclusion, it seems unlikely that archaeological deposits survive at this site, and that even if they do, the proposed method of construction will prevent their destruction. The proposal therefore does not conflict with guidance set out in NPPF and NSRLP policy ECH/6 and NSCS policy CS5.

 

Natural Environment and Rural Communities (NERC) Act 2006

 

See Issue 5 above.


The Crime and Disorder Act 1998

 

The proposed development will not have a material detrimental impact upon crime and disorder.

 

Local Financial Considerations

 

The Localism Act 2011 amended section 70 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.so that local financial considerations are now a material consideration in the determination of planning applications.  

 

Conclusion and Reasons for Approval

 

The applicant, GE Oil & Gas, is a major employer in North Somerset. At the present time there are 573 people employed at the site, with 92 vacancies being currently being advertised and further employment opportunities being created between 2013-2015. Notwithstanding the provision of some 328 off street car parking spaces there is significant under provision of parking which has resulted parking on surrounding roads. The company in recognition of the problem have sought to find land to capable of accommodating existing and future car parking provision. No other suitable site was found to meet the existing and projected shortfall in off site parking. The continued and expanded use of temporary parking on the Coates Industrial Estate was given particular consideration in the light of representation received from the owner and found to be unsuitable for a number of reasons.

 

The proposal is inappropriate development in the Green Belt and very special circumstances need to exist to permit such development. It is recognised that there a demonstrable need for car parking, and that no other site is available  to a level and to a standard required in terms of health and safety required by the company, to facilitate growth in production and resultant increase employment.

The shortfall in off street parking has led to the transfer of some jobs to locations outside the district and the applicant as an international company has premises elsewhere in the UK and in other countries which could be developed in place of the facility at Nailsea if adequate car parking provision, commensurate with the existing and planned workforce, cannot be provided.

 

The governments overarching policy is to secure job creation and economic growth. These aims are shared by the council and reflected in the Core Strategy and the NSRLP that seeks to ensure that North Somerset has a successful and diverse local economy and identifies, amongst others, to work with others to sustain and create new employment and business opportunities and to encourage and support the development of existing business in North Somerset to help to ensure the future prosperity of the area. 

 

It is concluded that that there is demonstrable need for car parking, to a level and to a standard required in terms of health and safety required by the company, to facilitate growth in production and resultant increase employment, and in accordance with ministerial statements concerning economic growth guidance set out in the NPPF  the economic aims and priority objectives and policies  of the council as set out in the Core Strategy to ensure that sufficient parking is provided in new development to meet the needs of the users and to eliminate detrimental on street parking that very special circumstances that clearly outweigh the harm by reason of inappropriateness any other harm to the openness of the Green Belt.

 

Furthermore the proposals would not adversely affect the character and appearance of the area, local residents, wildlife and any archaeological interests to an unacceptable extent. 

 

As such the proposal is acceptable and complies with NSCS policies CS2, CS3, CS4, CS6, CS11, CS12, CS20 and CS31 and NSRLP policies GDP/1, RD/3, E/7 and T/6.

 

RECOMMENDATION: Subject to referral to the Secretary of State if required, the application be APPROVED (for the reasons stated in the report above) subject to the following conditions:

 

1.                   

The use hereby permitted shall be carried on only by GE Oil & Gas, (or the applicant operating under any other name) and shall be for a limited period being the period of 5 years from the date of this letter, or the period during which the premises are occupied by GE Oil & Gas, (or the applicant operating under any other name) whichever is the shorter

 

 

Reason: Permission has been granted due to the very special circumstances of the applicant only and is otherwise contrary to Policies RD/3 of the North Somerset Replacement Local Plan (saved policies). North Somerset Core Strategy policy CS6 and guidance set out in National Planning Policy Framework Core Planning Principle 9.

 

2.

The car park hereby permitted shall be removed and the land restored to its former condition on or before expiry of this permission in accordance with a scheme of work submitted to and approved by the local planning authority.

 

 

Reason: The site is in the Green Belt where development is strictly controlled and the development is not normally considered to be appropriate and has been permitted due to the very special circumstances of the applicant only and is otherwise contrary to Policies RD/3 of the North Somerset Replacement Local Plan (saved policies). North Somerset Core Strategy policy CS6 and guidance set out in National Planning Policy Framework Core Planning Principle 9.

 

3.

The car park shall be used in accordance with the approved plans for the parking of cars by staff and visitors to the GE Oil and Gas premises and for no other purpose.

 

 

Reason: Permission has been granted due to the very special circumstances of the applicant only and to prevent undue disturbance to nearby residents and in accordance with Policy RD/3 of the North Somerset Replacement Local Plan and Policy CS3 of the North Somerset Core Strategy.

 

4.

The use of the car park hereby permitted shall not take place before 06.30 or after 19.00 hours.

 

 

Reason: To prevent undue disturbance to nearby residents and in accordance with Policy CS3 of the North Somerset Core Strategy.

 

5.

The bollard lighting hereby permitted shall only be switched on when the car park is in use. The lights shall either be switched off within 10 minutes of the being vacated or at 19.00 hours (which ever occurs the earliest) and shall not switched on again before 06.30 hours of the following day.

 

 

Reason: In the interests of the living conditions of occupants of neighbouring properties and the appearance of the area and in accordance with paragraph 125 of the National Planning Policy Framework and policy CS3 of the North Somerset Core Strategy.

 

6.

All works comprised in the approved details of landscaping should be carried out in accordance with the approved details shown on drawing no.282/100   during the months of October to March inclusive following occupation of the car park or completion of the development, whichever is the sooner.

 

 

Reason: To ensure that a satisfactory landscaping scheme is implemented and in accordance with Policy CS5 of the North Somerset Core Strategy and Policy GDP/3 of the North Somerset Replacement Plan.

 

7.

Trees, hedges and plants shown in the landscaping scheme to be retained or planted which, during the development works or a period of five years following full implementation of the landscaping scheme, are removed without prior written consent from the Local Planning Authority or die, become seriously diseased or are damaged, shall be replaced in the first available planting season with others of such species and size as the Authority may specify.

 

 

Reason: To ensure as far as possible that the landscaping scheme is fully effective and in accordance with Policy CS5 of the North Somerset Core Strategy and Policy GDP/3 of the North Somerset Replacement Plan.

 

8.

No development shall take place until a method statement identifying measures to protect all trees and hedgerows to be retained has been submitted to and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority. The method statement shall include proposed tree/ hedgerow protection measures during site preparation (including clearance and demolition work), construction and landscaping operations (including any changes to ground levels). Thereafter the site clearance works and development shall be undertaken in accordance with the approved details.

 

 

Reason: To ensure the protection of trees during the development process in the interests of the character and biodiversity of the area and in accordance with policies CS4 and CS5 of the North Somerset Core Strategy and Policy GDP/3 of the North Somerset Replacement Plan.

 

9.

The development hereby permitted shall be carried out in accordance with the following approved plans:10250 019; 10250 020; 10250 021Rev L; 282/100  , and documents:- Design and Access statement, Tree Constraints Report and Tree Location Plan and Extended Phase 1 Habitat Survey all received on 22 November 2012.

 

 

Reason:  For the avoidance of doubt and in the interest of proper planning.

 

 

Summary of advice notes to be included on the decision notice

 

1.                  The condition of the land referred to in condition 2 is as described in paragraph 1.3 of the submitted Extended Phase 1 Habitat Survey dated 9 October 2012.


NORTH AREA COMMITTEE

 

UPDATE SHEET

 

17 JANUARY 2013

 

Section 1

 

Item 5.1 – 12/P/2068/F – GE Oil and Gas, High Street, Nailsea

 

Third Parties:

 

Ten additional letters have been received that rehearse points of support set out the report.

 

Three additional letters of objection have been received. All object to the development on Green Belt grounds and the availability of land within Nailsea to accommodate the required car parking provision. Two, however, express concern regarding drainage and the flooding of adjacent land and one the possible adverse impact of the development on a nearby badger sett.

 

Officer comment

 The submitted Extended Phase 1 Habitat Survey identifies the presence

of a badger sett outside the sites boundary and recommends that if there is any significant excavations are to be carried out within 20m of the sett they are carried out only in consultation with an ecologist. It is considered that this matter can addressed by a condition

 

Further Information

Information concerning the following matters has been requested by Members following their visit to the site.  This is set out below:

 

Drainage

The applicant has undertaken ground/soil investigation to ascertain the drainage characteristics of the site, however the results are still being analysed. In the absence of details of how the car park can be drained in a satisfactory manner, so as not to cause flooding of adjacent pasture land to the north, a condition requiring the submission and approval of a drainage details prior to the commencement of development is proposed.

 

Weekend use of the car park

The applicant has confirmed that a limited number of personnel work at the site on Saturdays and Sundays and consequently it is anticipated that the car park would not normally be used on weekends. Given this position it would be possible, in the interest minimising the impact on the openness of the Green Belt and the living conditions of occupiers of adjacent dwellings, to formally limit weekend use by condition.

 

Trees

The submitted landscape proposal includes the provision of a belt of trees along the sites northern boundary, with a row of 8 trees between the car park area and the rear of the two dwelling to the east, together with 3 trees within each of four central parking bays. It is considered that in the event of the land being restored it would be beneficial to retain the trees on the sites northern whist requiring the removal of the other trees. This can be secured by recommended condition 2 in the report if required.

 

Restoration of Site

The car park has been designed to allow the site to be easily restored following the cessation of use. The wearing and base course of the aisle areas can be broken up in slab form and removed from site. The type 1 granular material sub base can be excavated and removed from site, recycled and reused and excavated area can then be backfilled with filtered and screened top soil seeded and returned to pasture.

 

Clarification of Secretary of State’s role

Referral of applications for inappropriate development of this nature in the Green Belt to the Secretary of State is only required if the development by reason of its scale, nature or location would have a “significant impact” on the openness of the Green Belt.  For the reasons given in the report, it is not considered that the impact on openness is significant in this case.

 

Amendment to the Recommendation:

 

That condition 4 be amended as follows;

 

4.

The car park hereby permitted shall not be used for any purpose including the parking of vehicles at any time Saturdays and Sundays without the prior written permission of the Local Planning Authority

 

 

Add the following additional conditions:

 

10.

No development shall take place within 20 metres of the badger sett located adjacent to the sites northwest boundary unless it is supervised by a qualified ecologist agreed by the Local Planning Authority

 

 

Reason: In order to preserve bio-diversity and protected species in accordance with policy CS4 of the North Somerset Core Strategy and paragraph 118 of the National Planning Policy Framework.

 

11.

No development shall be commenced until surface water drainage details together with a programme of implementation have been submitted to and approved by the Local Planning Authority.  Such works shall be carried out in accordance with the approved details.

 

 

Reason: To ensure that the development is served by a satisfactory system of surface water drainage and in accordance paragraph 17 and sections 10 and 11 of the National Planning Policy Framework, the Technical Guidance to the National Planning Policy Framework (March 2012) Planning Policy Statement 25 Practice Guide (Development and Flood Risk), and policy CS/3 of the North Somerset Core Strategy.