Plans for 302 homes on a site which straddles the Bracknell/Wokingham border have been unanimously approved despite councillors’ concerns over waste, traffic and school provision.
Bracknell Forest Council’s planning committee approved Persimmon Homes’ application to develop a 9.45-hectare site at Amen Corner at its August 17 meeting.
As well as full permission for the homes of up to four bedrooms, the hybrid application seeks outline consent for commercial space on 0.95-hectares of the site.
But councillors raised a number of concerns.
Cllr Dorothy Hayes asked that, when future schemes are considered, attention is paid to the pressure on Longshot Lane recycling centre, which is shared with Wokingham and Reading boroughs.
She said: “I understand we are committed to housing if we have not made our numbers, but I still worry about the position where this is because of the traffic.
“But there’s something else I was looking at and I would ask the officers to take this into consideration.
“These sites that are coming out use Longshot Lane. Is there a possibility in the future, officers consider the pressure this is going to put on our collection of waste and the disposal of it?
“You know I complain about the width of the roads and getting the trucks up there, but it’s also now about the amount of waste being taken to Longshot because we must remember we share that site.”
No school is included in the planning application and the meeting heard that Bracknell Forest has a surplus of primary school places. However, the meeting heard that surplus is expected to reduce which could necessitate the need for a school in future, an issue which will be addressed in the s106 agreement.
Cllr Sheila Collings said: “I am very concerned that if the school on the site does not come forward we will end up with a large number of primary school children who might have to be spread throughout the borough to be accommodated – and the transport that will cause in terms of more traffic.
“Whereas, by having a local school, there will be a proportion of children who can walk to school. The mix of houses indicates there will be families with small children living on that site.”
The site has long been fought over. In 2004 plans for 700 homes were refused and a 2012 scheme for 550 homes and a neighbourhood centre were voted through, only to come to nothing due to its s106 Agreement not being signed.
The current scheme, which dates from 2018, had initially proposed 442 homes.
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