Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting ECHONEWS to 80360, or email us »
Essex County Council veto for Castle Point Council's Blinking Owl homes: Leading planner says 313-acre site off A127 is unsuitable for big estate
AN Essex County Council report may have effectively sunk plans for a huge new housing estate near the Blinking Owl cafe, off the A127.
Borough councillors are pushing for the 313-acre site off the A127 to be included in Castle Point’s new Local Plan, as a way to spare sensitive green belt land from development.
However, County Hall has officially come down against the idea of developing the site before 2031.
In a 12-page report on the Local Plan, the county council says local infrastructure would not be upgraded in time to cope with so many new homes in that location.
Senior county planning official Andrew Cook’s report points out the borough council was originally advised to keep the land free of development until 2031.
He added: “Essex County Council would object to the allocated site, given concerns regarding inappropriate access opportunities to the A127 and A130 and the high cost (about £60million) of any arrangements required to maintain flows on the strategic road network.
“Access to the site from the existing urban area would exacerbate congestion at nearby junctions Tarpots and Woodmans Arms.”
The report also raises concerns about six other housing sites in the local plan, recommending Castle Point Council should allow 600 homes on land off Kiln Road, Thundersley, instead of 450 as other proposed sites might not end up being developed.
It suggested a proposed 600- home development at Thorney Bay Caravan Park, Canvey, would put the island’s primary schools under undue pressure.
And Mr Cook questions the need for a proposed new primary school as part of plans to build 800 new homes off Jotmans Lane, Benfleet. A Castle Point Council working group is due to look at the viability of the Blinking Owl site this summer.
However, opposition councillor Dave Blackwell said the report had “killed off the Blinking Owl site stone dead”.
Mr Blackwell, who leads the Canvey Independent Party, added: “No inspector will accept this site if it was added to the Local Plan, now County Hall has objected to it.
“The council has had four years to get this sorted and approach all the landowners, but now it’s too late.”
Comments are closed on this article.