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Dry Street plans put under microscope
PLANS to develop up to 850 homes on a wildlife haven will be revealed in October.
Residents got an early insight into proposals to build a new village on Dry Street and the South Essex College site at Nethermayne at a public exhibition.
The plan from Basildon Council, the college and Homes and Communities Agency will provide funding to move the campus to Basildon town centre, after £250million previously promised by the Learning and Skills Council was withdrawn.
Mike Goulding, from the agency, said: “It’s important that we make the most of this opportunity to contribute to Basildon’s growth by delivering family homes, as well as enhancing the town’s educational facilities.
“We’re committed to consulting as widely as possible in order to fully understand and take on board local people’s comments about the proposed development.”
Residents attending the exhibition on Saturday questioned why the college needed to move and had concerns about the development bringing traffic problems and losing vital habitats at Dry Street, which is an Essex County Council scheduled wildlife site.
Mirriam Heppell, from Gaynesford, Basildon, said: “The current college building is a pleasant place, in a good state of repair, with a large capacity.
“The traffic in Nethermayne is appalling and re-siting the college will not alleviate this when cars from up to 850 homes proposed for the site pour onto local roads, not to mention the construction traffic. The sale of the college site will result in a large green space being developed.”
Traffic and environmental impact studies are currently underway, with results expected before the outline planning application in the autumn.
There are already plans to improve Dry Street, its junction with Nethermayne, the hospital roundabout, and access to St Luke’s Hospice.
Information at the display said large areas of Dry Street would remain open space, with grasslands and woodland to the west and main hill area protected, with new habitats created and rare species relocated if necessary.
Plans include building a community hub with a primary school, shops and community facilities.
Main access will be from the college site, with a main spine road carrying traffic and buses through the estate.
Foot and cycle paths will also link with other areas into the open space.