Colden Common development could be downsized

Andover Advertiser: Colden Common development could be downsized, a meeting heard Colden Common development could be downsized, a meeting heard

COLDEN Common may only spread onto two sites instead of the planned three, a meeting heard.

The parish council was told that enough new homes could be developed on just two areas.

The village must absorb 250 new homes as part of the Winchester Local Plan.

On Monday (March 3) parish councillors were asked to consider a revised strategy whereby land off Main Road near the Black Horse pub should be removed from the development list.

One of the ‘most favoured’ locations backs onto Stratton’s Copse and the other is located off Hazel Close which is within the existing settlement boundary.

The northern Main Road site would only be removed if those two preferred locations can accommodate the number of houses.

In October the parish council was asked to agree to include the site near the Black Horse as a possible contender for development despite the 11 objections received.

Despite the parish council unanimously voting to accept the amended recommendation residents voiced their unhappiness with the proposals.

One resident, who only addressed herself as Marilyn, said: “My concern is you have got 250 houses with another 500 children and any number of cars. Where I live it’s already hell getting out onto the Main Road. We can all object, we can all agree; it will happen. But my concern is the safety of people living on the Main Road as the development goes ahead.”

Potential developers who had submitted plans for the sites originally discussed when the strategy was put together by Commonview – the group set up to liaise between Winchester City Council and residents – voiced concerns over the way the strategy was put together.

David Barnes, a representative for Welbeck developers, said the process was “fundamentally flawed because it’s not objectively based.

“The views are important but when any plans are proposed they must be objective,” he said. “I would advise the parish council not to make a decision tonight. This strategy is not sounds and should not be considered.”

However, head of strategic planning of Winchester City Council, Steve Opacic, said: “There shouldn’t be any criticism about how the sites have been addressed. A group has been set up to come up with a strategy but ultimately it’s the parish council that comes up with the most preferred site as elected representatives of the community.”

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