Monday, 30 November 2020

Plans changed to avoid more traffic on estate

A DEVELOPER which wants to build up to 100 homes between Watlington and Pyrton has changed

A DEVELOPER which wants to build up to 100 homes between Watlington and Pyrton has changed the plans to avoid redirecting traffic through an estate.

Providence Land has earmarked a field in Pyrton parish, near Watlington recreation ground, for the development.

The company had planned to connect Cuxham Road and Pyrton Lane using Willow Close on the edge of Marlbrook estate as well as a new road through the development itself to provide an alternative route for drivers using Pyrton Lane, which bounds the site on two sides.

Now it has amended the plans following a public consultation earlier this year to avoid using Willow Close and connecting Cuxham Road and Pyrton Lane with a new road outside the estate.

In a leaflet distributed to residents, the company said it had listened to comments made at an exhibition in February which was attended by about 300 people.

“Residents were particularly concerned about opening up Willow Close to traffic, using the land reserved in the planning consent for a future highway scheme and the roundabout that was designed for this  purpose.

“This would have brought through-traffic directly alongside a well-used area of amenity green space within this estate, so we have changed the route and shifted it away from existing residents on to land to the west of Willow Close, connecting Cuxham Road up to the M40.

“Dealing with this issue now will permanently remove the uncertainty hanging over the future use of Willow Close and is intended to give lasting peace of mind to those residents.

“Our new road alignment also allows new convenient pedestrian and cycle routes into the schools and connections to the rest of the town.

“We have retained elements that were supported, such as our new long-stay car park to relieve the Hill Road car park, that can also be used by parents to drop off children at Icknield College and boost parking capacity for the town.

“We have also retained the extensive new public parkland to function as a permanent and extensive landscaped buffer between Watlington and Pyrton.”

Providence Land said the number of new homes needed in Watlington was likely to rise to at least 200.

It added: “We believe that there is a unique opportunity to use this housing requirement to resolve the number one issue raised by residents — traffic.

“Our view is that spreading around 200 homes across the town without a solution to through-traffic would just make things worse for residents and is a wasted opportunity.

“The total number of homes that relate to the delivery of the alternative route between Cuxham Road and the M40 is less than 200 and these homes will be sensitively designed with extensive  landscaping.”

Both Watlington and Pyrton are in the process of preparing neighbourhood plans. A draft of Watlington’s plan is due next month with a referendum expected in spring.

The Watlington neighbourhood plan forum co-ordination group has criticised the proposed development, saying it “precipitates consideration of only one possible site when there are many other options”.

It said the proposals were “inappropriately timed” and that Providence Land had not waited to be part of “the more comprehensive consideration of the wider implications of future development in both parishes”.

Pyrton’s neighbourhood plan steering committee is asking landowners in the village to submit sites for possible development before July 16. It will then assess the suitability of each one.

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