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Collonade Group plan for Rochford attacked by councillor
PLANS to build 300 new homes on green belt land in Rochford would lead to traffic chaos, a leading county councillor has claimed.
Developer the Colonnade Group wants to build the homes on land at Coombes Farm, between Stambridge Road, Rocheway, Mornington Avenue and Mill Lane – without building a new access road to the site.
The proposal is being considered by Rochford District Council as part of consultations on the local development framework.
The framework document will set out the district’s future planning policy – including the need to find sites for more than 2,000 new homes by 2021.
The developer is planning public exhibitions at Rochford and Stambridge next month to explain the proposals in detail.
They have already been criticised by Tory county councillor Tracey Chapman, who has responsibility at County Hall for the environment.
She lives in South Street, Rochford, one of the roads which would be forced to take extra traffic.
She said: “I have an awful lot of worries about these proposals.
“It would be madness to put more traffic through Rochford town centre. Things are already difficult enough with the current road system in the area.
“I will also want to know exactly what sort of proposals are involved for flood defence work, as part of the site is in the flood plain for the River Roach.
“The last estimate I know of for flood defences was £4million to protect development in the area.”
It would also mean expanding Stambridge Primary School, she added.
“It is quite clear the existing school is far too small to take extra children from a development like this,” she explained. “I just don’t think it is acceptable at all.”
Colin Oliver, landlord of the Cherry Tree pub, in Stambridge Road, was surprised to learn about the proposals.
He said: “I want to know a great deal more, as this is really the first news I have had about it.
“I understand some people living along Stambridge Road would be affected by this scheme and have not heard anything about it.”
Keith Hudson, district councillor responsible for planning, said the scheme was one of many which had been put forward for development in the area.
He added: “At present, we are concerned about the obvious traffic generation of such a project, especially its impact on Rochford town centre.”