NOW 58 LOCAL RESIDENTS OBJECT TO LABOUR’S SOCIAL-HOUSING SCHEME FOR ST PAUL’S

Fifty eight local residents have now submitted objections to the Vale of Glamorgan Council about the  Newydd Housing Association’s controversial scheme to demolish the former St Paul’s Church and build a block of 14 “social housing” apartments in its place. Public criticism of the scheme has been ignored by the Labour-controlled Penarth Town Council.

A total of 58 St Augustine’s Ward residents – all living in the vicinity of the former St Paul’s Church – has now lodged formal objections to the Labour Party’s controversial scheme to develop the site as a block of 14 rented apartments for “social-housing” tenants.

Details of these objections can be found on the Vale of Glamorgan council website and – for ease of reference – are also reproduced at the end of this news item.

The 58 objections now lodged by local Penarth people stand in stark contrast with the anodyne discussions held to date by the Labour-controlled Penarth Town Council’s planning committee in which not a single councillor has uttered as much as one word of criticism of the controversial scheme.

Penarth Town Council’s planning committee chairman – Labour activist Nigel Humphrey (second from the left) on the pre-election stump with party colleagues in Penarth

Penarth Town Council has chosen to ignore every single one of the public representations criticising the scheme which have been made directly to it – some by delegations of local people who have attended council meetings in person to voice their concerns.

Apart from a minor caveat about the front facade of the building ,the council has told the Vale of Glamorgan Council [the final decision-maker] that “Penarth Town Council are [sic] fully supportive of the provision of the proposal by Newydd Housing Association”. [In fact the Town Council as a whole has never voted on the scheme – only the ill-attended Labour-dominated planning committee has].

THE SCHEME

A computer impression of the completed development – which has yet to be approved.

The scheme involves tearing down the existing St Paul’s Church building – which, when it closed as a church, was bought by the old Penarth Urban District Council for use as a community hall for the benefit of the town . The money for the deal came from local rates – and was therefore paid by the people of Penarth – but :-

  • When the old Penarth Urban District Council was wound up in 1973, the ownership of St Paul’s was passed (free of charge ) to Glamorgan County Council.
  • When Glamorgan County Council was wound up  St Paul’s was passed (free of charge) to the new South Glamorgan County Council.
  • When the South Glamorgan County Council was wound up, St Paul’s was passed (free of charge again) to the Vale of Glamorgan Council – which still “owns” it now.

The current development proposal (cooked-up by the Labour administration which held power in the Vale of Glamorgan Council until last May) –  is to demolish the former St Paul’s Church – except for  the front wall – and built a new cramped development of 14 apartments, which would be capable of accommodating a total of more than 31 “social-housing” tenants. Most of these tenants will actually pay little or no rent –  as in most cases their rents will be paid for them, or be subsidised from the public purse.

A local source says the Labour Party is hoping that  the majority of the 31 social housing tenants who would be allocated apartments on the former St Paul’s site, will be Labour voters who will therefore help to bolster the party’s declining fortunes in the St Augustine’s Ward of Penarth and have the effect of gerrymandering the outcome of  future elections.

The 31-plus people living in St Paul’s will have only 5 designated car parking spaces provided . The rest of their cars will be parked on surrounding streets

The 31 social-housing tenants would be provided with a total of only 5 car parking spaces – and would have to park the rest of their 26 vehicles on nearby streets.

Not one of the proposed 14 new apartments would have a single square inch of so-called “amenity space[ i.e. an outdoor area, a garden or even a bit of decking]. If the existing plan is approved it would mark a 180 degree U-Turn in planning policy for the Vale Council  –  which has always insisted on “amenity spaces” being provided in new developments – often at considerable cost to developers.

The final decision on the St Paul’s social housing development scheme is due to be made in the Vale of Glamorgan planning committee in Barry on Thursday April 26th. Members of the public are entitled to attend – and to speak at – meetings of the planning committee provided sufficient advance notice has been given .

LOCAL OBJECTIONS SUBMITTED TO THE VALE OF GLAMORGAN COUNCIL:-

Ms Kate Stokes Davies of the local Action Group has provided PDN with a compilation of all the objections to the St Paul’s development which have been submitted by local residents to the Vale of Glamorgan Council . The compilation – prepared by a local resident – has been drawn from the information already published (but hard to get at) on the Vale of Glamorgan Council’s website. 

The Vale Council has been formally asked to circulate this information separately to ALL the councillors on the Vale Planning Committee prior to its meeting scheduled for April 26th 2018 which will decide whether to grant planning permission for the scheme  :-

OBJECTIONS:-

Jan 2, 36a Arcot Street, Mr James Mayer

I would like to object to the proposed development in its current form on the following grounds:

•        •           The conclusion of the parking report is provided by the developer is wrong, and many more parking spaces are required. See note one below.

•        •           Pedestrian access is unsafe, as no footway is provided to the entrances in the rear lane.

•        •           Pedestrian access along Chapel Lane is not DDA compliant (footway should be widened to 2000mm as part of the development.)

•        •           The applicant acknowledges that their community engagement was not sufficient (see point 3.2.2 of the document entitled “171215 Pac Report”.)

•        •           The applicant has not provided a response to the recommendation in the Ecology report, section 5.8 & 5.11, that the current bat roosting and bird nesting locations in St Pauls will be retained.

We would like to see the St Pauls site redeveloped and suggest that a reduction in the number of units to 8 would be likely to receive local support.

Note One: The following numbers are all sourced from the parking report provided by the developer.

The community space requires 26 parking spaces

3 visitor spaces are required for the residential units

6 spaces are required for the residents of the units

Total spaces required is therefore 35

22 spaces are available on street.

Therefore 17 parking spaces need to be provided within the development, 11 more than proposed.

Further, no evidence is provided by the applicant to support their claim the “sustainable location of the development will reduce the demand to travel by car” (Section 4.3.6 of the document entitled “171215 Pac Report”.)

 

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Jan 5, 27 High Street, Miss Helen Wilkins

Parking in the area is horrific as it is. When crossing High Street you take your life in your hands with cars flying around the corner and a temp bus stop. We were asked as a Community what we wanted to use the facility for and yet this has been ignored. More flats are being crammed in as “affordable housing”. The size of “land” is not sufficient to have such a large number of flats built up on it.

 

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Jan 8, 19 High Street, Miss Jennifer Sadler

The proposed plan does not conform to the adopted VoG Parking Standards 2015 – p15 a4 ‘visitor parking must be designed as an integral part of any development where it is required’ – the proposed development does not include any residential visitor parking. – p25 community centres ‘1 space per 10m squared’ – zero parking is proposed at this development for the community centre. Given the above I would object to the proposed development.

 

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Jan 8, 6 Meliden Road, Miss Rosanna Hughes (owner of flat 6, The Royal)

I am concerned that this development will worsen the already bad parking situation in surrounding streets. I am also concerned about congestion in the already busy lane alongside St Paul’s. Traffic will increase in this lane and pedestrians could be in danger as there is no pavement.

 

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Jan 8, Flat 9, The Royal, Mr Adam Jurd

A large number of properties are overlooked on both sides of the development. Parking is insufficient- the analysis doesn’t account for the current parking situation in the area, which is already very difficult. The areas where the site will be located exhibit high crime rates, which I do not think will be improved by locating the development here and would not be beneficial for residents of the development. The surrounding roads to the development are basically alleys, I don’t think there is sufficient access for emergency services or pavements for people to walk through them. Also, existing residents would have the rear access to their properties hindered. The development could create a planning precedent for others to develop their outbuildings at the rear of their properties which would further exacerbate access problems and parking in the area. There are no solid plans for the activities of the community space which may be late night events, causing noise pollution.

 

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Jan 8, 37 King Street, Mr Kevin Lawrence

This proposed development is not fit for purpose. The proposed flats are only going to be provided 5 parking spaces. This area of Penarth is already over developed and parking in the area is almost impossible at times for current residents not to mention visitors to the two public houses on globe [Glebe] street. On some nights cars park on the corners which make it dangerous for pedestrians and impossible for parents with prams or wheelchair users crossing the road. The proposed development for homes for families that will have visitors, and health and social services support staff visiting, needs to consider increased traffic and parking needs.

 

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Jan 9, 41 Arcot St, Mrs. Julie Poole

There is not enough space given to the community area. The money allocated was for a community centre, not for more single small rentals what we need is facilities and more family homes there is nothing for anyone to do. We can’t have a meeting with the council unless it’s in a pub. This must tell you we need what we have been promised, a decent sized community centre to facilitate all not just the few. Please use the money wisely on our behalf.

 

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Jan 9, 41 Arcot Street, Mr Rachael Poole

I believe that once again Penarth residents’ needs have been thought of as little importance in the decision making process with regards to this development.

As a resident who lives four doors away from the proposed development this will have a huge impact on my daily life. As a child I used that church week in week out for activities from boxing to thai chi, along with countless other residents including my 3 siblings. To see it left to rot and decay the way it has is horrendous, it has fallen into such state of disrepair. I believe that this is intentional from the council whose relationship with the gentleman who ran the church crumbled, so did the poor church. The residents are left little hope for the church ever being returned to its former glory as a hub of the community.

I find the proposal for “community space” laughable and can’t think how this is a sizeable space to offer any practical usable space for the amount of residents in the area left without a community space!

I also am interested to see what provisions are in place for the refuse. There is a mountain of rubbish outside the church on a fortnightly basis which provides sustenance for a huge number of pigeons, seagulls and additional rodents to tear apart and discard dirty nappies sanitary products and general food detritus along the roads and along with the new flats’ refuse this is a health and safety nightmare waiting to happen. With another say 30 black bags left on the street for collection the rubbish mountain will be even more of an issue.

The car parking is yet again another issue? How many spaces are to be provided for both residents and the attendees of said community space? As I’m estimating an additional say 22 cars based on the average of 1.5 cars per home (average these days) an additional 22 cars on Arcot street is not possible and a logistical nightmare for the locals who already have to park on adjoining streets due to the lack of parking in the Penarth Heights development.

To round off my thoughts on the subject the fact that there was an opportunity to make this space a community area that was suitable for all was wholly declined by the council just a few years ago with no explanation. I would like to ask where the (£250,000 I believe) funds are from the Crest Nicholson development which tore down a community space to make room for Penarth Heights development??? Residents were promised an alternative space with these funds, nothing ever materialised.

I wholly object to the proposal due to its scale, lack of thought and impractical planning which will result in a huge impact for the local residents who will have to live with all the said issues I have raised above. I implore you not to allow yet another ‘Penarth gem’ building be destroyed due to poor planning and lack of insight into daily lives of the residents living here.

 

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Jan 10, Cottage 1, Flat 16, The Royal, Mr Ross Turpitt

No objection to plans but being as the main access to the Royal cottages are from the existing lane feel strongly that this lane remains unblocked at all times. Being as the development is for a considerable amount of units which need transport to come and go on frequent use daily, suggest a two lane road for transport and pathway either side of road. also a slight concern is knowing if there would be night lighting to the building. Again possible lampposts, spotlights etc. Finally above all security to be of a high standard.

 

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Jan 11, 43 Glebe Street, Mr Jeff Follett

I object to the St Pauls church development as detailed in this planning application, mainly due to lack of parking provision for both the proposed flats and community hall. I feel that the parking appraisal completed, is fundamentally flawed due to the fact the survey was completed in the early hours of a Wednesday morning, it should have been completed at approx 8pm virtually any night of the week, when I can guarantee that it is extremely difficult to park anywhere on Glebe Street. I feel that parking standards guidelines should be enforced. I would propose that a resident parking scheme be introduced and that the rear lane to Glebe Street become gated, to prevent it becoming a defacto car park and enhance security. I do not object to the development of the site in principle, but feel that this application is too intense in accommodation levels which will in my opinion inevitably cause local parking problems. I trust that my points of view will be considered.

 

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Jan 11, 26 Arcot Street, Mrs Alison Game

This proposal represents a gross over-development of the site, with an inappropriately large number of units in a confined space in an already highly-populated area. The preferred parking spot will be Arcot Street due to the location of the site entrance – as the Parking Appraisal shows, it is already usually over-capacity. The application for apartments on Cogan Hill requested 0.77 spaces per unit, despite being adjacent to Cogan Station. By these standards, the St Paul’s development requires at least 11 parking spaces, even with no allowance for users of the community space. The proposal is flawed on every level and lets down the communities of Arcot Street and the wider St Augustine’s area and also the prospective residents of the new apartments. I hope that the committee will literally ‘go back to the drawing board’ and return to the community with a range of options for full and public discussion.

 

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Jan 17, 3 Church Close, Miss Rachel Marsh

I think it should be restored and turned into a community place. Youth club, possibly boxing again and gymnastics. There is nothing for youngsters in that area and it is a place of history. Too many places are being knocked down for redevelopment. It’s wrong

 

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Jan 20, 25 Arcot Street, Mr Philip Sky

St. Paul’s was a civic amenity. It still is owned by the public and still has potential as a useful public asset. We cannot say that about any other buildings in the immediate area. I object in principle to the erosion of the public realm as proposed by this scheme and urge you to think again about how the building and its environs can be brought back into public use.

As for the Newydd scheme itself I consider it to be singularly unimaginative in regard to overcrowding an unsuitable site [‘an urban area of high density’ according to Newydd’s application] and singularly unimaginative in addressing some of the real issues

the site throws up as a potential home for its vulnerable clients. The development faces the wrong way and not only insults the street by offering it a blind facade but more importantly passes up the opportunity to bring light into the proposed homes. Instead the proposal is for the building to address a public lane, crime hotspot, and highway with a public house at either end. The amount of utility and amenity space is negligible and any careful reading of the snapshot parking survey undertaken by ACSTRO would question their conclusions. In short this development is both unsuitable for its proposed tenants and robs future generations of any opportunity to maintain a large and versatile public space.

 

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Jan 22, 70 Lewis Road, Llandough, Mrs Naomi Excell

This development is not only not in the best interests of the residents, but it is deeply saddening to see a wonderful opportunity to preserve a site of historic interest demolished by giving it over to the people of Penarth. With the right amount of proper public engagement this place could be redeveloped as a centre for real lasting impact in the community. Penarth is full of community focused creative people who would make this place an asset to our town. This scheme is robbing our town of a unique opportunity to build a place to connect people and enable great community initiatives to emerge. Please, do not destroy it. It is also place of great sacred significance. One woman made a difference in the community when she started the work which led to the building of this chapel. It transformed lives. I want to see this legacy continued.

 

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Jan 22, 30 Arcot Street, Mrs Katrina van der Vliet

This is a vast over development of the site. There is no green space, inadequate parking which will spill over onto an already congested area. Plus no real details or plans on the use of the community space.

 

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Jan 24, 132 Plassey Street, Mr Matt Thomas

I am 100% opposed to this redevelopment for the following reasons: 1) Way too many flats 2) Inadequate parking – there’s nowhere to park round here already. Visibility for drivers with cars parked all over junctions is already a serious safety hazard. 3) No amenity space – this is a ghetto development 4) Ugly, money-grab. Anyone involved in this should be ashamed of themselves as this is materially not fair to future occupants or neighbours. 5) Development will contribute to serious congestion and pollution suffered throughout Penarth, especially those on Windsor Road, Plassey Street and Cogan.

 

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Jan 24, 50 Arcot Street, Mr Jonathan Russill

This represents over-development and will result in increased overlooking of existing properties where privacy is limited. The parking survey is based on a misconception that the building currently generates parking demand and that this is reflected in current parking levels. This is clearly not the case. Parking is at capacity already. More demand created by the proposal will put this beyond reasonable levels. In my opinion this represents back-lane development. It is inappropriate to house potentially vulnerable tenants in a secluded location where crime levels are already some of the highest in Penarth. Several other property owners intend to apply for redevelopment of garages in the area’s lanes if St Paul’s plans are approved. Why keep the façade and yet black out the windows, and not restore them nicely? The conclusions of the inadequate public consultation are wrong and do not reflect public opinion. Many more of the public are against the scheme than stated by Newydd.

 

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Jan 24, 75 Salop Street, Mr Chandima Kulamannage

I write in connection of the above. Most people agree that St Pauls Church needs to be developed. We are aware that there is a housing shortage in the country. As you know Penarth town centre & all streets close by are most of the time crowded with vehicles & people. Our streets are already crowded with vehicles, sometime when we do shopping & come home nowhere to park, especially in evenings & weekends extremely difficult to park.

The roads and lanes around St Pauls are already congested, emergency services need access along the roads and lanes, and therefore additional parking generated from this development potentially could be problematic for all. The density of flats that Newydd are proposing in this site may be excessive. Newydd have not included any parking space for users of the community centre and 5 parking spaces for the occupants of the 14 residential properties. If Newydd reduced the number of dwellings by few these would provide more space for community centre parking and relieve the pressure on the surrounding streets and services.

Newydd and the council have not decided what the community centre will be used for yet. But we have an opportunity to have our say on what we think it could be used for. Some people have already expressed an interest using space for fitness classes, art studios etc.

I would like you to consider our request. Once again, there is no doubt that the parking issue is going to be accelerated more than now due to your new proposal, unless you come with a solution for parking.

 

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Jan 24, 2 St Joseph’s Old School, 24 High Street, Mrs Kate Davies

I live within sight of St Paul’s and object to this proposal: Design and density – many local people believe too many units have been squeezed into the site, creating miserable housing and adding pressure to local infrastructure. Inadequate car parking – linked to the design, there are just five spaces for the 14 units plus a community centre. The applicant’s impact study appears to be flawed. Similarly inaccurate assumptions were made for Penarth Heights, and community concerns were ignored. Now we have a parking situation which is totally out of control in terms of negative impact. Community Centre – this has not been properly thought through and a rather arbitrary space is allocated before any plans for it are considered. This is an unimaginative proposal. It could be so much better if proper consultation effort was made, rather than a token gesture.

 

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Jan 24, 6 Queens Road, Mr Joseph Hill

Consultation has been for community housing, planning has come through for affordable. I am concerned that we will end up with just more flats. The suitability of mixing ‘affordable’ housing and community centre. The suitability of the location for potentially vulnerable people (position of accesses/dark lanes/noise caused by community centre ……) Transport links are not ideal. Parking is very busy already, there has been a noticeable increase in the area since the report was undertaken. 5 spaces for 17 bedrooms is inadequate. The community needs indoor community space that is not faith-affiliated. This building has been promised to the community in its entirety, mixing it with social housing when there are many better locations of derelict buildings appears to be a bad compromise for both users. Poorly designed spaces for residents of the proposed building and key omissions like space for servicing and management of the facility, places for refuse, disability access.

 

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Jan 24, 6 Queens Road, Miss Angharad Matthews

I attended the residents’ meeting held at the Ex-serviceman’s club last night. I have lived in Penarth for seven years and have lived on Queen’s Road for four years. Last night I thought I would be attending a meeting of residents with parking worries, so I was surprised to find a community whose concerns run much deeper, who are trying to win back lost community space and who are upset about how they have been treated. Whilst I am sure that you have been made aware of many people’s concerns regarding the residential aspect of the development, it is the community space which is at the heart of it. I get the impression that the combined nature of the development is purposely confusing and poorly thought out so as to distract and divide feedback. Community members who have been around for a lot longer than I are obviously still yearning for the promised replacement for demolished facilities (Billy banks and St Paul’s when it was usable). I am sure you will have received much more detailed feedback regarding this from who people who know much more about it.

Community Space:

Access from the temporary bus stop on the blind bend would be difficult for anyone with reduced mobility or children with the requirement to cross two roads, one of which is popular with the “boy racers”.

There are no dedicated easy access/disabled parking spaces available for use for the community centre. Also no delivery zone etc.

Residential aspect of proposal:

Resident’s well-being:

What I found very encouraging at the meetings I have attended is the genuine concern for the well-being of potential residents. This is not a posh area of Penarth, so please do not confuse concern for a veiled wish to not live near a social housing development, because after listening to last night’s speakers, I can assure you that is not the case!!!

Inadequate amenity areas to serve what could be 32 or more residents.

No outside space provided (apart from one bench around the back).

The lane is often used for fly tipping (and apparently drug deals), this doesn’t make for a pleasant place to live.

The rear access to the development is dark and dingy and a generally depressing space and would not feel safe, even if lit up like a Christmas tree.

Safety:

Insufficient room for pedestrian and vehicle access around the side and the rear of the building. Interestingly, the shared routes that have been tried down on Royal Close appear to be a failure. Cars are parked on the roads, there is no room for cars, pedestrians and push chairs and with restricted line-of-sight the residents are in real fear of an accident in the near future. Church Lane is even more restrictive!

The restricted access for services and emergency services down Church Lane is of great cause for concern.

Parking:

Parking in the immediate area is an absolute joke! As I feel is the parking survey. Knowing the area well it looks very much like they have included drop kerbs and junctions in their estimations, “spaces” that would get you a ticket! They show that some of the local streets are well over capacity (up to 126%!) where the quality of parking is good.

If there are apparently 22 spaces available on street, they still calculate that they would need to park 38 residents on the street.

I am afraid that I do not agree with the “finding” that people in affordable housing don’t afford cars. All the friends and family I have who live in social housing have cars and motor bikes. And I drive to go and visit them. And their friends drive to see them. And healthcare professionals drive to see them. Plumbers drive to see them. The emergency services also have to drive to see them at times. 5 spaces and the idea that the overcapacity streets can absorb this is an utter joke.

Are there any examples from more local housing developments?

All this report seems to be based on the idea that the building in its current form produces the need for 52 parking spaces which are apparently catered for on street. The building is derelict. Who are these 52 people using a derelict building at 1am in the morning?

Ecology

Bats – We very regularly see bat activity around that building and the surrounding buildings, has their habitat been considered at the church and the surrounding buildings?

Will other local currently derelict buildings be considered for social housing as well? Is this scheme to excuse social housing being omitted for surrounding developments?

 

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Jan 25, 49 Arcot Street, Tim Land

1.         Objection – OVERLOOKING WINDOWS (Privacy)
Location: South side of the building (specified as the ‘Side Elevation’ ) 1st and 2nd floor one bedroom apartments – Kitchen window.

I would request that these kitchen windows are removed / or placed above head height so as to not afford ‘monitoring’ views.

Both these apartments feature a window at the kitchen sink. These will directly overlook the rear of at least 5 properties 45 – 50 Arcot Street and the 2nd floor window will extend many houses further up the row.

The position of the window is problematized by the nature of the window – Kitchen sink windows tend to afford extensive monitoring of the view. These windows will offer direct and commanding views over gardens and into the rear windows of the properties.

I can conclude from having previously lived in a converted church overlooking residential properties that the kitchen window view afforded extensive insight into the surrounding houses and gardens, observing people’s properties and their daily routines. Just by the process of being at the kitchen sink and carrying out simple chores did I have insight into people’s personal lives. The position encouraged observation but in fact was affording a view that was deeply invasive.

I would also add that the views I experienced extended well beyond 21 meters and were also aided by the lack of blinds / curtains / netting and other obscuring materials that tend to be minimised in rear windows in order to promote views into the properties’ own garden. Furthermore, ‘watchtower’ windows with sun reflections on the glass do not appear to be noticeable by those lower down. Again, I was very aware of how oblivious some residents were of the window and seemed to behave as though they were not observable.

Having looked at the VoG guidance on minimum distances, including angles of view, I would state that the kitchen windows on the 1st and 2nd floor flats (South side elevation) contravene this guidance in regard to properties 45 – 46. I would also state in regard to these properties that they may not have the necessary information to place an objection (45 is a rental property and 46 is owned by a charity as supported living). The residents and any future residents will be comprised and the Planning department must take this issue into account rather than simply relying on the current properties owners to make objections. It is these situations that end up with planning errors because the system is reliant on an objection at one moment in time.

Houses 47 – 50 will also be compromised by what I know to be observable views, while these may be beyond the minimum distance (which is a guide rather than an absolute specification) given the elevation of the windows, they will afford unfettered views down into the properties – they will act as ‘watchtower’ positions. The views into the gardens offers an even more invasive aspect and could detract from the character and use of the gardens. The windows could also incur and encourage the building of excessively high fences which will cast shadows into the adjacent garden on the north side of any property doing so.

It should be noted that 9 of the apartments do not feature a kitchen window and are obviously suitable as properties utilising light from the central window. Whilst the designs are obviously trying to maximise every opportunity there is no principle that these kitchens must have a window. In this case the windows come at the expense of an invasion of privacy for the properties in Arcot street. There has never been a view from this part of the site and the surrounding properties with their historical development and use precedes the design proposal.

I would request that kitchen windows in these properties are removed / or placed well above head height so as to not afford ‘monitoring’ views.

2.         Requirement – Chapel Lane infrastructure and traffic management
It is welcomed that Highways have specified that Chapel lane is resurfaced and given suitable lighting. This is essential as the development will incur increased use of the lane from Glebe street, Salop street and Arcot street. As the entire design proposed at St Paul’s is in essence a ‘back lane’ development the current status of Chapel Lane as ‘back lane’ needs to change. It needs the proper infrastructure and traffic management to make it safe.

As a resident with a rear garage I have a strong knowledge and understanding of the lanes currently and can reasonably project the problems and issues increased use will cause.

The planning department should recommend / specify the following:

1.         One way system for Chapel Lane.
The rear car parking will increase what is a quiet rear lane into a regularly used road. All access points are only one car wide so it will become very problematic and hazardous if a one-way system is not implemented.

2.         Yellow lines at pinch points.
There are yellow lines on the East- West section of Chapel Lane but they will need to be further used on the North South section where the lane narrows to one car (rear of 51 southward)

3.         Speed restrictions
There will need to be a 5-mile speed limit in the lane. Its narrow design and access to garages and other makeshift residential dwellings needs to be considered. The design will also encourage pedestrian access from all access points but there is no pavement in the north south section.

4.         New signage and monitoring for Fly Tipping.
Chapel lane is one of the worst areas for fly tipping in Penarth – it is regularly used to dump domestic and commercial waste. The suggestion from the design statement provided by WYG suggests all fly-tipping will disappear due to the natural surveillance of residents in St Pauls. This is a simplistic assumption and habits will not immediately change – the main focus for dumping will simply move further up the lane towards Salop Street. New and highly visible signage needs to be introduced along with CCTV monitoring. It is unacceptable to allow the health and safety risk that is Chapel Lane fly-tipping to continue and it has long been the message from VoG that St Paul’s development will be the catalyst.

5.         Lighting.
Sufficient lighting needs to be provided for Chapel Lane but it must not cause light pollution to the rear properties in Glebe / Arcot / Salop street. Low level lighting must be used, if it does not extend above height of rear walls / garages then it will not cause disturbance to rear properties.

6.         Further residential development of Chapel Lane.
The development of St Pauls and Chapel lane will incur the application of residential developments to coach houses and garages. Developing these spaces as ancillary buildings is acceptable but planning should not allow self-contained flats to develop.

Note: I am aware of a resident who has openly said they will apply to build a flat in an existing coach house if St Pauls is developed. This will only introduce more traffic and density issues into the lane. It should be limited to ancillary use without full self-contained facilities. (I wish to develop my current garage back into a coach house for ancillary use to the main house).

 

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Jan 25, 2 Old St Joseph’s, 24 High Street, Mr Rhodri Davies

I would like to add my voice to those of the many residents who feel this proposal is botched. There are too many units, squeezed in too tightly – and that’s after amendments from the applicants! Car parking locally is already a nightmare for residents because of the Penarth Heights development. The spaces allocated here are inadequate and will force elderly residents to park even further away from their homes. The allocated ‘community centre’ is a joke – completely at odds with the original idea and the needs of the community. The frontage – left blacked out – will do nothing to attract visitors or potential buyers to an area where investment is much needed. Proper consultation with the local community is a must – not token, box ticking exercises.

 

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Jan 25, 121 Plassey Street, Mrs Zoe Powell

Strongly support at least part of this building becoming a vibrant community space. There is no non-denominational community space provision in the immediate local area, and no community provision at all in the Penarth Heights area. In order to make this newly developed area of Penarth, with its mix of private and social housing, a true success, the provision of community space is vital.

 

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Jan 25, 17 The Royal, Cottage 2 at rear, Queens Road, Miss Vanessa Tempest

I have two major concerns about this development.

Firstly, that my property and outdoor area will be overlooked. The only outdoor area I have is a small area of decking in front of my property. Although I own this area, it is adjacent to a communal area to the rear of the Royal flats, so it is not exclusively private. I am overlooked by the flats of the Royal and the rear windows of the houses in front on my property (on Arcot Street). To be further overlooked by the windows of the proposed development would be detrimental to my quality of life and also impact on the value of my property. My own property has opaque upper windows so I cannot overlook any of my neighbours, which was presumably part of the planning decision in respect of the Royal. I would appreciate the same consideration given to myself in respect of St Paul’s and at the very least, expect that opaque upper windows are installed so that I may maintain my current level of privacy.

Secondly I am extremely concerned about the increase of traffic that will result in Chapel Lane, immediately adjacent to my property. The lane is not designed for regular traffic and there is already an issue of safety with vehicles which use the lane as a shortcut. Myself and my neighbour, at number 16/Cottage 1, use a door to the lane as our main access to our properties. This is already tricky at times as there is only pavement across the lane and not as we immediately exit onto it. Particularly concerning is the fact that my neighbour is an elderly lady who is unsteady on her feet and has had several falls. She is unable to access her property any other way due to steps leading down to an alternative exit via the flats; she is unable to negotiate the steps. Therefore I would be very concerned that with the extra volume of traffic she would be very likely to come to harm having to negotiate the lane on a daily basis.

 

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Jan 25, 49 Arcot Street, Miss Sarah Sweeney

Chapel lane will need proper development to make it suitable for potential occupants. Resurfacing, lighting and traffic management will be necessary. There is a lack of clarity as to the facade and community consultation in its design and use within the building. The wellbeing of potential occupants needs to be prioritised in the design and this is not yet evident. There is no lift in the residential block which seems to suggest a lack of support for potential residents. Overlooking windows (side elevation – South aspect next to Arcot street houses. These have lines of sight into properties – windows and gardens – and will be intrusive.

 

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Jan 26, 10 Royal Close, David Collinson

Living in Royal Close, 100m from St Paul’s Church, my main concern is car parking, but on the broader planning aspect, would this scheme not set a dangerous precedent for stand-alone back-lane developments?

On a subjective level, I feel that 14 flats is too many for the site and the design is overbearing for neighbours and uninspiring. In the most densely populated part of the town, we should be looking for something that lifts the area and the spirits, not something that looks cramped and adds stress to infrastructure.

The residential part of the development as proposed has no lift, so the 10 flats on the first and second floors would not be suitable for the elderly or disabled.

On parking, the appraisal by Acstro reads like a masterclass in whittling down the developer’s liability to provide adequate parking rather than an impartial assessment of need.

Its key points are:

The five proposed parking spaces are adequate.

Tenants in the 14 flats will have below-average access to a car.

The development would generate less demand for parking than the existing permitted use, ie. church.

No spaces are necessary for the community hall as none were provided in St Pauls’ previous use.

An overnight survey of parked vehicles on nearby streets showed 22 available spaces.

The assumption about car ownership is based on the 2011 census (Vale and St Augustine’s ward) and recent surveys of four Newydd Housing Association sites ‘in the Vale of Glamorgan’. The census on the 123 social-rented households in St Augustine’s ward at that time showed 41% car/van ownership or access.

The number of social-rented houses in St Augustine’s ward has increased dramatically since the census with the construction of Penarth Heights. A late-night walk-by of social rented houses in phase two of that development indicates much higher car ownership than the figures provided by Acstro.

The four Newydd sites ‘in the Vale of Glamorgan’ are in fact all in Barry, with all due respect, a town with a different demographic to Penarth. As Newydd now has 210 properties in Penarth, I have to ask why Barry was chosen for an assessment of car ownership per household?

The Acstro report contends that the St Paul’s development would be an improvement on the existing situation in that its parking demand would be lower than for the permitted use (church). I took advice from a highways consultant, who disagreed (see note), saying that an argument could be made that the proposed development should have 10 (5 proposed and 5 shortfall) parking spaces.

I accept that it would be unreasonable to apply parking standards strictly (15 spaces for residents, 3 for visitors), but the case for ‘a more flexible approach’ is not as compelling as Acstro would have us believe. For instance, if a car ownership factor of only 0.5 is applied, the parking demand for 14 flats would be seven, not six, plus three for visitors, making 10. And it is inaccurate to say that parking demand attributable to community use is ‘roughly half’. On information in the public domain, the community space is 368 sqm and the residential component is 683 sqm, total 1,051 sqm, so gauged by floor area, the community space accounts for about a third of parking demand rather than roughly half.

In the conclusion of the parking appraisal, there is no mention of the three visitor spaces. Have I missed something or is it proposed that visitors, social workers, health visitors, carers and the like will have to find parking spaces on the streets?

The assessment of on-street parking also leaves me puzzled. I walked the designated streets from 00.15 to 00.35 on Tuesday, January 16, and counted 45 parking spaces, which, of course, is more than double the Acstro benchmark of 22. By far the most, 13, were on Glebe Street between Chapel Lane and Salop Street. Perhaps it’s no coincidence that there are two pubs there, so spaces occupied by people from out of the area during opening hours become vacant after closing time, which is not helpful for residents coming home from work in the early evening looking for parking spaces.

I repeated the exercise on Friday, January 19, this time counting cars so I could subtract that number from Acstro’s estimate of 213 available spaces. I counted 291, so there is clearly a discrepancy that merits further investigation. And perhaps the parking assessment should take account of local factors and usage at different times?

Two further points: the temporary bus stop in High Street is due to be marked out to highways standards, reducing parking spaces for at least part of the time, and the Vale council has started consultations on a parking strategy which is likely to bring tighter parking controls.

No right-thinking person would argue that the St Paul’s site should not be redeveloped – it’s an eyesore and a magnet for fly-tipping and other antisocial behaviour – but I do not believe that this proposal is the answer. Maybe I should be careful what I wish for, but if back-lane development is not an issue, perhaps the answer might be fewer flats, each with a parking space, and a bigger allocation of Section 106 money that was supposedly earmarked to replace the community facilities lost when the Billy Banks estate was demolished?

NOTE: The parking standard for a church is based on the number of seats, but the number of seats in the church is not known so Acstro have used the parking standard for an assembly hall. In doing so, they have over-estimated the parking demand for the church, which boosts the case that parking demand for the development would be lower than for the existing development and, therefore, an improvement.

The parking standard for an assembly hall is one space per 10 sqm. The existing floor area for the church is 650 sqm, so Acstro have said the building would require 650/10 = 65 spaces. The parking standard for a church is one space per eight seats. So for it to require 65 parking spaces, it would have had to have 8 x 65 = 520 seats, which seems unlikely.

 

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Feb 19, 5 Queens Road, Dr James Vafidis

Thank you for the reconsultation letter which I received today (19 February 2018). I have had the opportunity to review the amended plans on the VOG website and considered the application in terms of the impacts it will have on the amenity of my own property (which backs onto the lane alongside St Pauls Church), but also the heritage and community impacts it will have on the local area.

While I support the redevelopment and conversion of a derelict church into a useable space for the community, I have representations to make about the details of the submitted proposal.

My primary concern is about the extent of demolition works of the existing St Pauls Church, which is an important landmark in Penarth and part of the character and heritage of the local area. The proposed plans include keeping the facade which I understand will not be functional with doorways nor windows. Surely, there must be a workable solution that includes refurbishing the existing structure, which is still standing. To demolish a striking example of local religious architecture and replace it with residential units of limited heritage or visual value would represent a failure to preserve the local character and historical buildings.

The plans show a community space within the new building, but this seems to be too small to represent a good resource for the local community. This building should primarily represent a space where the community can meet and do activities, as it was before the building fell into disrepair. The community aspect is, like the facade, a small gesture in the proposal, which is geared towards creating a cluster of small residential units.

My other concern with the application is the loss of privacy my family will experience as a result of the 12 additional first and second floor windows for residential units that are proposed to face and overlook the back of my property and those of my neighbours. This will surely reduce the quality of residential amenity. This impact may be less significant if the building is used as a community space, as it has been intended, rather than for residences.

 

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Feb 19, 10 Royal Close, Mr David Collinson

I write in connection with the parking appraisal by Acstro consultancy and the Highways draft response of January 5 calling in survey data on the four comparator sites and specifying other requirements.

May I draw your attention to my notes under 10 Royal Close on the Vale website and attached for your convenience?

You will perhaps be aware that the four ‘comparable’ developments cited by Acstro are indeed ‘in the Vale of Glamorgan’ – all in Barry. I was not in a position to assess the ratio of parking spaces to dwellings at those sites.

I see that the Highways draft response specifies that ‘..the parking space are required to be shown as allocated to specific users.’

I wonder if I might ask if that will be by individual user, eg. vehicle registration number, or category, eg. Visitor and Resident?

 

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Feb 20, 132 Plassey Street, Mr Matt Thomas

The amendments do nothing to mitigate the following material objections: 1) Inadequate parking provision for occupants and users of the community facility. This area is already suffering from lack of parking with overspill from the Penarth Heights development. This has made the area very dangerous for drivers and pedestrians alike. 2) No shared or private amenity space for occupants. This is a ghetto development, which benefits no-one apart from the developers. 3) Cramped and out of character development. 4) The community has been consulted and asked for a community facility. This was promised by the Council when they demolished The Billy Banks estate.

 

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Feb 21, 45 Glebe Street, Mr Owen Erasmus

I feel that this development has been poorly thought through and is not fit for purpose. The community space and parking spaces allocated are totally unsuitable and as a local resident whose property and garage is directly opposite the proposed site the developers have been unable to guarantee me uninterrupted vehicular and pedestrian access to my property during construction. I have already sought legal advice on this matter and they have not made any of the assurances required by my solicitor. As the parent of a young child who regularly plays in the lane behind the development I feel the lack of proper parking facilities will go beyond lowering our quality of life but actually be dangerous.

 

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Feb 23, 28 Arcot Street, Mr Johathan Stock

Concerned that access to the main area will be restricted based on narrow lane, cars parked by people now habituating the garages in the lane. Parking is at a premium on the street as it is with a potential influx of 15 + cars this will only make this issue worse. Fly tipping/ general rubbish dumped, this will only encourage rats. With money spent on the image of the houses in Cogan why is planning even allowing the retention of the church elevation. It’s the community hall that people want, not a wall that’s more likely to end up coming down due to costs and stability.

 

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Feb 23, 12 Royal Close, Mr Leigh Atkinson

I would like to object to the proposed development on the following basis;

1. The proposed density of accommodation is too high. The available space is not appropriate for the proposed 14 dwellings.

2. Car parking provision is totally inadequate. The parking survey was only carried out on 1 occasion at 1.00am, which does not provide an accurate reflection of the available on-street parking or the current parking problems near St Paul’s. The parking problems will be compounded when the new, permanent, bus stop is installed on High Street, removing 10 parking spaces, which were apparently available during the parking survey. We currently have major safety problems caused by over parking too close to the junction of Paget Rd, High St and Queens Rd with many mobile homes being permanently parked in the area to compound the situation. We already have a significant increase in parking in Royal Close due to the lack of parking provision in the area of St Paul’s and the surrounding area causing

major safety issues for both pedestrians and road users. The provision of 5 parking places is totally inadequate for the proposed 31 residents.

3. The whole concept of St Paul’s being turned into a residential facility goes against the Vale of Glamorgan’s own public consultation, which unanimously concluded that St Paul’s should be reinstated as a community facility to replace the original facility that the authorities shut down.

4. The modern design of the apartment block is not in keeping with the surrounding area.

 

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Feb 26, Flat 9, The Royal, Queens Road, Mr Adam Jurd

I am against the new proposed construction if 14 flats. Regarding parking, the analysis conducted is completely inaccurate. I failed to find a space last night and had to park some distance away. To take the view that there will be adequate parking is absurd. There will be further issues for those that might live in the flats, given the crime rate in the lane. The height of the development will also cut out sunlight from neighbouring properties and they will become overlooked by a significant number of windows. I think there will be a health and safety issue for access of emergency services in the lane. I also do not think the design is in keeping with the surrounding area. The development needs to be completely rethought with full consultation of Penarth residents, as I believe their opinions have been overlooked.

 

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Feb 26, 17 The Royal, Queens Road, email to councillors from Vanessa Tempest

CANNOT OPEN THIS FILE

 

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Feb 27. 27 Arcot Street, Anna Solic

Dear Elected Representative,

This email has been prepared to express the views and concerns of residents in close proximity to the St Paul’s Church development. You have probably received similar correspondence, but the views presented have been collated from many residents in the area including my husband and myself and reflect the issues we have with the Newydd project.

Penarth Town Council’s planning committee recently recommended that the project be paused to allow proper consultation on the community centre aspect. It was also recommended that a local community group, such as the St Paul’s Community Group, could and should manage the community element of the proposed development. As a member of the community, I agree. This cannot be achieved without careful thought and further in depth consultation. If properly co-produced, it could transform this near-derelict site into an inspiring, well used community space once again.

I am writing to all elected councillors to request more time for proper consultation with the local community – not just surveys, but meaningful, engaging dialogue across every age group, in line with the Five Ways of Working outlined by the Well-Being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015 to achieve the Seven Well-Being Goals outlined in the Act. We have a dynamic, engaged community, as was demonstrated at the Public meeting held last year, with many ideas and strong opinions on a sustainable facility that should first and foremost serve the community. In the plan submitted to Vale of Glamorgan Council, the community centre has not been thought through. A cramped, inflexible and arbitrary space has been allocated before any uses for it have been considered. That could doom it to failure, to be replaced later by more flats in this high-density scheme. There is a real local will to collaborate in the hope to make right, some of the wrongs in the site’s mishandling over the years, which are well documented in the local media.

The surrounding area lost a valued community centre when the Billybanks council estate was demolished to make way for the Penarth Heights development. The community was promised £800,000 of grant funding from the developer, Crest Nicholson, to replace the facility, recommended by the Vale Council at the time of Penarth Heights planning. The St Paul’s site was originally ear marked as the building to use.

We have learnt from the Council’s Section 106 Officer that, without a Vale led consultation with the community, this promise has been broken; with vast majority of the money quietly allocated to the already well-served Belle Vue area, (with 3 community spaces in very close vicinity) benefiting to a proposed amount of £500,000 to renovate the Pavilion. The St Paul’s area is a far more densely packed area, with a wider range of communal needs, is set to receive a sum nearer to £300,000 for the community element. The method used for the allocation of these funds is not clear, nor fair.

The community genuinely cares about St Paul’s, the people in the area and its connection as a community building. As such, we hope that you are inspired by our appeal and that you support Penarth Council’s recommendations to pause the planning application and for Newydd to sit back at the drawing board with the community, as they have promised to in their application, as well as answering other concerns around design and density, inadequate parking provision, and back lane development that have not been addressed yet, despite repeated questions.

The site has been unused and unloved for so long, a few more months longer will make a huge difference. If it means getting it right and having community buy in, the pause will be worth it. We hope that in working together, we can help make a success of St Paul’s redevelopment and demonstrate the true meaning of co-production and sustainable communities.

 

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Feb 27, St Joseph’s Old School, 24 High Street, Kate Davies

Dear Elected Member

You may know that a decision is imminent on plans to redevelop St Paul_ s Church, Penarth, with a mix of flats and a community centre.

If properly thought through, it could transform this near-derelict site, and there_’s a real local will to collaborate on plans. But there_’s also a long and painful back-story to this development, well documented in local media.

Essentially, the local area lost a valued community centre when the Billybanks council estate was demolished in 2010 to make way for the Penarth Heights development. At that time, the community was promised £800,000 of S106 grant funding from the developer, Crest Nicholson, to replace the bulldozed facility and help build cohesion between existing and newer communities.

Without consultation, that promise has been broken with almost all of that money quietly allocated to a more affluent part of the town. We learn from the Council_’s Section 106 Officer that it_’s the already well-served Belle Vue Park area (with three existing indoor community spaces) that will benefit to the tune of £500,000 whereas St Paul_’s – a much poorer, far more densely packed area, albeit in that same electoral ward as Belle Vue – will only receive £300,000 of the original £800,000 recommended by the Vale Council at the time of Penarth Heights planning consent.

Now we are told that if we are to justify any sort of community facility, it may have to be managed by people locally. That’s not unfeasible, but it cannot be achieved without careful thought and consultation about the community aspect.

What are we asking for? More time for proper consultation with the local community _- not just surveys, but meaningful, engaging dialogue across every age group, in line with the Five Ways of Working outlined by the Well-Being of Future Generations Act 2015 to achieve the Seven Well-Being Goals outlined in the Act. Working together, we can help make a success of St Paul_’s redevelopment.

In the plan submitted to Vale of Glamorgan Council, the community centre has not been thought through. A cramped, inflexible and arbitrary space has been allocated before any uses for it have been considered. That could doom it to failure, to be replaced later by more flats in this high-density scheme. If, for example, local demand is for music rehearsal space, it will need soundproofing to protect residents in the building as well as neighbours in Arcot Street.

People have other concerns that have not been addressed yet, despite repeated questions. These include:

1 Design and density – in Penarth_’s most densely packed area, too many units have been squeezed into the site, creating miserable housing and adding to pressure on local infrastructure.

2 Inadequate car parking _- only five spaces are planned for the 14 flats plus a community centre. Our analysis indicates that the applicant_’s parking appraisal is flawed.

3 Backlane development _- this scheme would set a dangerous precedent.

Penarth Town Council_’s planning committee recently recommended that the project be paused to allow proper consultation on the community centre aspect. As a community, we agree. In fact it_’s the only way it can work successfully, which is what we all want.

 

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Feb 28, 17 The Royal, Vanessa Tempest

I live in Cottage No. 2 at the rear of The Royal flats (my address is 17 The Royal), so in very close proximity to St Pauls across Chapel Lane.

I notice from the revised documents that there is a plan showing distances and angles including my property (attached). I logged previously my concerns regarding visibility into my property (attached) and notice that Tim Land, 49 Arcot Street has raised this issue also. He states the following:

“Having looked at the VoG guidance on minimum distances, including angles of view…..”

I have tried to locate the guidance he is referring to but without success; I would be very grateful if you direct me to this guidance please.

Additionally, are you able to explain what is happening regarding consideration of the issues of privacy referred to by myself and Tim Land? – I have not been able to work out from the online information the status of this and would appreciate an explanation of why the attached plan has been generated and how any decision regarding privacy and visibility between the properties on the plan will be reached please.

 

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Feb 28, 17 The Royal, V Tempest – repeats statement of January 25.

 

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March 3, 26 Arcot Street, Mrs Alison Game

Once again, I write to voice my objections to this proposed development which is completely inappropriate for the site – too big, too modern and too cramped. Parking WILL be an issue – every current resident of the area knows this, however many reports are produced to say otherwise. When the St Augustine’s community was asked what they wanted to happen to St Paul’s, the majority decision for a return to the boxing and gym clubs was ignored but feelings remain high. The community space allocated by Newydd is laughably small and needs to be completely re-thought. I ask you to put a hold on this proposal to allow the community more time to gather information so that the floor area and configuration of floor space that would be most beneficial to the greatest number of users can be determined and a new set of plans drawn up.

 

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March 6, 2 Old St Joseph’s, 24 High Street, Mrs Kate Davies

Having read the revised plans to redevelop St Paul’s Church, Penarth, with a mix of flats and a community centre, here are my comments as a local resident.

If properly thought through, the plans could transform this near-derelict site, and there’s a real local will to collaborate. Under the Well-being of Future Generations Act 2015, this sort of collaboration should be encouraged.

Reading the Welsh Government’s Draft Planning Policy Wales: Edition 10 (February 12, 2018), it strikes me that the concept of ‘placemaking’ being introduced as a key driver is directly relevant to this proposed development.

The five key planning principles outlined in the document clearly state the need to work in an integrated way to maximise the contribution to well-being. That requires well designed places and cohesive communities, sustained and created by ensuring the appropriate balance of uses and density to make places where people want to be whilst meeting requirements of new development.

I would ask the Committee to fully consider whether the principle of ‘placemaking’ has been fully considered in this proposal. Whether a true assessment of community need has been thought through – for current and future generations. These questions are particularly relevant, given the long and painful back-story to this development, well documented in local media.

[Continuation of this letter largely repeats note of February 27]

 

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March 6, 10 Royal Close, David Collinson

Talking to another local resident who has been observing car parking in the vicinity of St Paul’s, I realise that in my DIY surveys, I wrongly included Salop Street and the southward continuations of High Street, Arcot Street and Glebe Street to Plassey Street. This would account for me finding significantly more parking spaces than the Acstro survey.

Had these streets been parked solid – they were not – it would have made no difference to the number of available parking spaces. However, I did not compare like with like and that is an error.

Time and the weather are against me, but I will carry out a new survey as soon as possible.

NB: NEW SURVEYS SENT TO THE HEAD OF HIGHWAYS AND THE CASE OFFICER ON MARCH 19 HAVE NOT BEEN POSTED ON THE VALE COUNCIL WEBSITE.

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March 7, 25 Arcot Street, Mr Philip Sky – repeats statement of January 20

 

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March 8, 33 Paget Road, Fiona Bussell

I feel that more time is required for further and proper consultation with the local community, in line with the Five Ways of Working outlined by the Well-Being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015 to achieve the Seven Well-Being Goals outlined in the Act. We have a dynamic, engaged community, as was demonstrated at a Public meeting held last year, with many ideas and strong opinions on a sustainable facility that should first and foremost serve the community. In the plan submitted to Vale of Glamorgan Council, the community centre has not been thought through. A cramped, inflexible and arbitrary space has been allocated before any uses for it have been considered.

I am also concerned about future parking requirements. The Planning Application is making use of guidelines that can allow for minimising parking standards, but I believe that the Vale of Glamorgan parking guidelines state that suitable parking should be available.

Paragraph 4.16 states: “Local Planning Authorities should give greater weight (than if considering non-residential uses) to the potential adverse impacts likely to result from on street parking when the design and layout of the street is unlikely to satisfactorily cope with additional residential parking pressures”.

4.5 The aim as previously remains to ensure that new development or a change of use is accompanied by sufficient parking space for private cars and service vehicles to avoid the need for vehicles to park on street and thereby cause congestion, danger and visual intrusion.

The parking appraisal submitted along with this application attempts to demonstrate that there will not be demand for significant parking but it appears to use old data and poorly constructed observational methods to draw conclusions. With only 5 proposed spaces, it also suggests that St Paul’s residents are to be discouraged from car ownership. Again this appears to be conjecture with no real evidence to suggest this would be the actual situation.

Therefore further consultation and gathering of better evidence is required.

 

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March 9, 30 Arcot Street, Mrs Katrina van der Vliet – see also Jan 22

As a near neighbour to this proposed development I am extremely worried that it constitutes massive over-development of the available space. The proposed plans appear to have overlooked the impact of a further 14 households on the surrounding area. This is particularly worrying in terms of traffic, this area is already saturated particularly as the streets around the development are used daily by commuter parking for the town centre. The argument that the residents will not be able to afford cars is weak, there is no way that Newydd would be able to dictate what residents do in regards to their transport decisions or those of the people who may be visiting them. I am also concerned about noise and light pollution, and the possibility that this development is the thin end of the wedge when it comes to ‘back lane’ development, something frowned upon in other, perhaps more affluent areas of Penarth, but apparently perfectly acceptable in this ward.

 

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March 9, 29 Arcot Street, Tim Land – see also Jan 25

1. Objection – Overlooking Windows (Privacy)

2. Objection – Car Parking and Traffic Impact

3. Objection / Comments -Construction

4. Objection / Comments -Chapel Lane infrastructure

1. Objection – OVERLOOKING WINDOWS (Privacy) Location: South side of the building (specified as the ‘Side Elevation’) 1st and 2nd floor one bedroom flats – Kitchen window. Plan Drawing 2024-004D

The amended plans show changes to the windows for ground, first and second floor windows. This is a welcome change from the previous plan but there is still a lack of clarity from the plans and designs given as to the exact height of the windows and if they afford views from the inside to the surrounding properties.

If the windows have been placed above average head height then it is safe to assume they are functioning to allow light in rather than views. I am including my original submission of why windows with views from the side elevation are problematic and contravene VoG guidelines on minimum distances.

Original objection

Flats that feature a window at the kitchen sink area on the ‘Side Elevation’ will directly overlook the rear of at least 5 properties, 45 – 50 Arcot Street and the 2nd floor window will extend many houses further up the row.

The position of the window is problematized by the nature of the window – Kitchen sink windows tend to afford extensive monitoring of the view. These windows will offer direct and commanding views over gardens and into the rear windows of the properties.

I can conclude from having previously lived in a converted church overlooking residential properties that the kitchen window view afforded extensive insight into the surrounding houses and gardens, observing people’s properties and their daily routines. Just by the process of being at the kitchen sink and carrying out simple chores did I have insight into people’s personal lives. The position encouraged observation but in fact was affording a view that was deeply invasive.

I would also add that the views I experienced extended well beyond 21 meters and were also aided by the lack of blinds / curtains / netting and other obscuring materials that tend to be minimised in rear windows in order to promote views into the properties’ own garden. Furthermore, ‘watchtower’ windows with sun reflections on the glass do not appear to be noticeable by those lower down. Again, I was very aware of how oblivious some residents were of the window and seemed to behave as though they were not observable.

Having looked at the VoG guidance on minimum distances, including angles of view, I would state that the kitchen windows on the 1st and 2nd floor flats (South side elevation) contravene this guidance in regard to properties 45 – 46. I would also state in regard to these properties that they may not have the necessary information to place an objection (45 is a rental property and 46 is owned by a charity as supported living). The residents and any future residents will be comprised and the Planning department must take this issue into account rather than simply relying on the current properties’ owners to make objections. It is these situations that end up with planning errors because the system is reliant on an objection at one moment in time.

Houses 47 – 50 will also be compromised by what I know to be observable views, while these may be beyond the minimum distance (which is a guide rather than an absolute specification) given the elevation of the windows, they will afford unfettered views down into the properties – they will act as ‘watchtower’ positions. The views into the gardens offer an even more invasive aspect and could detract from the character and use of the gardens. The windows could also incur and encourage the building of excessively high fences which will cast shadows into the adjacent garden on the north side of any property doing so.

It should be noted that 9 of the apartments do not feature a kitchen window and are obviously suitable as properties utilising light from the central window. Whilst the designs are obviously trying to maximise every opportunity there is no principle that these kitchens must have a window. In this case the windows come at the expense of an invasion of privacy for the properties in Arcot street. There has never been a view from this part of the site and the surrounding properties with their historical development and use precedes the design proposal.

Conclusion: I would request that kitchen windows in these properties are above head height and use glazed [obscured] glass in order to protect surrounding properties from observation and privacy invasion.

2. Objection – Car Parking and Traffic Impact: Provision of car parking is inadequate and is likely to have adverse impact with on street parking.

I would like to highlight an issue that is probably the most common concern for local residents but has continually been dismissed by proponents of the scheme. Parking is indicative of the central issue surrounding the development – Over Density. The planning is making use of guidelines that can allow for minimising of parking standards, but equally, the VoG parking guidelines state that suitable parking should be available.

And paragraph 4.16 states: “Local Planning Authorities should give greater weight (than if considering non-residential uses) to the potential adverse impacts likely to result from on street parking when the design and layout of the street is unlikely to satisfactorily cope with additional residential parking pressures”.

4.5 The aim as previously remains to ensure that new development or a change of use is accompanied by sufficient parking space for private cars and service vehicles to avoid the need for vehicles to park on street and thereby cause congestion, danger and visual intrusion. It also states that:

For developments where clear evidence has been supplied that car ownership levels will be lower than normal, a more flexible approach to numbers of parking spaces may be taken. Acceptable evidence of this would be a contractual arrangement with tenants to secure low car ownership levels.

The ACSTRO parking appraisal attempts to demonstrate that there will be significantly less demand or requirement for parking spaces than normal. However, it uses old data and poorly constructed observational methods to draw conclusion.

Some points to note:

The parking appraisal survey area is flawed. It has selectively used streets to minimise the effects of current parking congestion. Three key streets that connect directly to the St Paul’s ‘block’ and would be obvious sites for parking are not included in the survey area –

Salop Street, King street and Coronation Terrace.

The survey area used extends to the Paget Road boundary with Steep Street. (See Appendix of ACSTRO Parking Appraisal – pg 11) This is a section of road not connected with the St Paul’s ‘block’, it is across Queen Street, which is the busiest street in the area and regularly incurs speeding traffic, it is also down a steep hill. It is not the logical place to park if you live within the St Paul’s ‘block’ as Queen St acts as a natural boundary. More to the point, the distance to the end of the survey area on Paget Road / Steep Street junction as measured by road is 190m. The same distance from St Paul’s as measured by road will include all of King street, three-quarters of Coronation Terrace, and three-quarters of Salop street from Glebe street junction to High St junction. Why would those crucial roads be omitted? An observation is that they are absolutely full and there is rarely available parking on them especially in the evening when a survey would take place. Instead Paget road has been used as it tends to have a greater number of spaces.

The parking survey is flawed and has used a misleading survey area to obscure the number of available spaces in the direct areas around St Paul’s.

The Parking survey needs to be re-conducted, with more than one observation and with a logical survey area.

There are further points to raise with the parking appraisal.

• Penarth is on a headland and surrounded by water, whilst it may have shops and amenities it does therefore require travel to reach the greater number of resources.

• Also to note is the idea of social housing and car ownership. Car ownership is associated with health and well being and it is a perceived marker of status, freedom, empowerment. It clearly allows for greater access to resources both economically and culturally and affords more opportunity than being reliant only on public transport. This ‘affordance’ should be an achievable aspect for residents of the site. Referring back to VoG parking guidelines:

‘For developments where clear evidence has been supplied that car ownership levels will be lower than normal, a more flexible approach to numbers of parking spaces may be taken. Acceptable evidence of this would be a contractual arrangement with tenants to secure low car ownership levels’.

Would Newydd be obligated to discourage car ownership through contractual means in order to compile with this requirement of evidence?

The award winning Newydd designs in Barry that have been much touted in the consultation / planning process have near enough one parking space per unit. Whilst the ‘one off’ observation in the ACSTRO appraisal suggests the lack of demand for the spaces there is no factoring in of future use. One space per unit is a sensible feature and suggests why those residential sites are properly designed and have received awards. They afford opportunity, development and aspiration, is it [considered] that St Paul’s residents be denied those opportunities?

Cars will continue to be an integral factor in transport in South Wales. The region is unlikely to merit the same investment into large scale metropolitan transport systems as found in major cities worldwide. There is strong evidence to suggest that cost effective electric vehicles will become the standard and more desirable mode of transport over the next 30 years.

Residents of St Paul’s need to be afforded the same opportunities as other Newydd tenants to access transport and should have the right to vehicle ownership.

The current number of parking spaces would suggest that St Paul’s residents are to be discouraged from car ownership or extensive access to car-based interaction.

The ACSTRO parking appraisal concludes with an assessment of current parking availability to the site and points 5.1 / 5.2 demonstrate a complete lack of understanding as to the current situation. It an appraisal by numbers without proper correlation of solid evidence.

To restate from the VoG parking Guidelines:

4.5 The aim as previously remains to ensure that new development or a change of use is accompanied by sufficient parking space for private cars and service vehicles to avoid the need for vehicles to park on street and thereby cause congestion, danger and visual intrusion. The local area is already critical in terms of parking and traffic management. There are cars parked over pedestrian crossing points, corners are obscured and blocked, there are no passing points in narrow streets, there is a lack of yellow lines and visible chicanes, there is speeding (Penarth town area needs a 20 mile zone). There is a serious accident waiting to happen. The introduction of more cars without sufficient off-street parking is a critical design flaw.

To conclude:

• The appraisal does not provide repeat observations, the survey area is seriously flawed and actually suggests a deliberate exclusion of certain streets closest to the site in order to provide biased data. The appraisal offers weak comparisons, old data, and a lack of local knowledge and observable practice.

• This parking appraisal should be discounted and a more rigorous and accurate assessment made.

• The lack of parking spaces is indicative of the overall design problem of too many units and over density of residential dwellings in that area.

3. Objection / Requirement – Construction: Local residents accept that St Paul’s needs to be redeveloped and that will incur construction. It is hoped that construction will be scheduled to avoid major disruption to local residents. What is not clear is the timescale and intended months of the year construction will take place. This is a crucial aspect for local residents in surviving a major construction project such as this. It should be noted that many children live in properties around the site and rely on gardens as important areas of play especially through the summer months and critically in school holidays. There needs to be consultation and management of construction so the most disruptive elements are not taking place during school holidays and at times when residents need the use of outdoor space.

It will be a highly contestable aspect for the construction to prioritise ‘good weather’ to benefit the developer at the cost of the local residents.

There need to be assurances as to the scheduling of construction to avoid major disruption.

4. Requirement – Chapel Lane infrastructure and traffic management. A reiteration of previous comments as to the need for infrastructure development if Chapel Lane is to be considered suitable for habitation with a development such as this.

It is welcomed that Highways have specified that Chapel lane is resurfaced and given suitable lighting. This is essential as the development will incur increased use of the lane from Glebe street, Salop street and Arcot street. As the entire design proposed at St Paul’s is in essence a ‘back lane’ development the current status of Chapel Lane as ‘back lane’ needs to change. It needs the proper infrastructure and traffic management to make it safe.

As a resident with a rear garage I have a strong knowledge and understanding of the lanes currently and can reasonably project the problems and issues increased use will cause.

The planning department should recommend / specify the following:

1. One way system for Chapel Lane. The rear car parking will increase what is a quiet rear lane into a regularly used road. All access points are only one car wide so it will become very problematic and hazardous if a one-way system is not implemented.

2. Yellow lines at pinch points. There are yellow lines on the East-West section of Chapel Lane but they will need to be further used on the North South section where the lane narrows to one car (rear of 51 southward)

3. Speed restrictions: There will need to be a 5-mph speed limit in the lane. Its narrow design and access to garages and other makeshift residential dwellings needs to be considered. The design will also encourage pedestrian access from all access points but there is no pavement in the north south section.

4. New signage and monitoring for Fly Tipping. Chapel lane is one of the worst areas for fly tipping in Penarth – it is regularly used to dump domestic and commercial waste. The suggestion from the design statement provided by WYG suggests all fly-tipping will disappear due to the natural surveillance of residents in St Pauls. This is a simplistic assumption and habits will not immediately change – the main focus for dumping will simply move further up the lane towards Salop Street. New and highly visible signage needs to be introduced along with CCTV monitoring. It is unacceptable to allow the health and safety risk that is Chapel Lane fly-tipping to continue and it has long been the message from VoG that St Paul’s development will be the catalyst.

5. Lighting. Sufficient lighting needs to be provided for Chapel Lane but it must not cause light pollution to the rear properties in Glebe / Arcot / Salop street. Low level lighting must be used, if it does not extend above height of rear walls / garages then it will not cause disturbance to rear properties.

6. Further residential development of Chapel Lane. The development of St Pauls and Chapel lane will incur the application of residential developments to coach houses and garages. Developing these spaces as ancillary buildings is acceptable but planning should not allow self-contained flats to develop.

Note: I am aware of a resident who has openly said they will apply to build a flat in an existing coach house if St Pauls is developed. This will only introduce more traffic and density issues into the lane. It should be limited to ancillary use without full self-contained facilities. (I wish to develop my current garage back into a coach house for ancillary use to the main house).

 

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March 9, 49 Arcot Street, Ms Sarah Sweeney – see also Jan 25

Objection to overlooking windows on the south side (side elevation). Change of window design needs final clarification that it does not allow ‘peep hole’ viewing. Windows should be above head height or glazed to ensure privacy of surrounding properties. Community centre management and ‘ownership’ has not been made clear in the design process. There need to be assurances that the space remains a community centre and is not an exploitable asset for Newydd. It should have the same status and protection as VOG community centres. This is more akin to a public / private partnership and as part of the design process this needs to be made clear. There are two many unanswered questions which should be integral to the design. The central issue for objection is over-density of the immediate area. There is good evidence that infrastructure will be adversely affected by the number of residents proposed along with the well-being of the residents themselves.

 

==========================================

March 9, 75 Salop Street, Mr Chandima Kulamannage

Since our previous letter we cannot see that you have taken any action to resolve the parking congestion we are already experiencing, there is no doubt that with this development the congestion in this area is going to escalate. I cannot see that you have made much difference from the original application.

We would like you to consider our request. Once again, there is no doubt that the parking issue is going to be worsening more than now due to your new proposal, unless you come up with a solution for parking we object to the above project.

 

==========================================

March 10, 37 King Street, Mr Kevin Lawrence – see also Jan 8

Please refer to my earlier objection as the minor alterations to the plan do not address these. I am particularly concerned about the parking this new development has as it is totally inadequate. Trying to park in this area of Penarth is a growing problem without adding 14 new properties with only 5 parking bays. The additional visitors for support to the new tenants could include a variety of professionals such as social workers, health visitors, community psychiatric nurses, family support workers and others. In addition with no concrete proposals for the use of the community space it is impossible to gauge how much extra traffic this could entail.

 

==========================================

March 10, 43 Glebe Street, Mr Jeff Follett – see also Jan 11

Again, I would like to object to the amended application on the grounds that it is still an over development of an already highly populated area where again the complete lack of adequate parking provision has not been addressed. I am convinced that the lane to the rear of Glebe St will become in effect a car park which will restrict access to existing properties.

 

==========================================

March 16, 17 The Royal, Cottage 2 at rear, Miss Vanessa Tempest – see also Feb 28

Objection to Amended – 2024-002J proposed site plan: I object strongly to the proposed removal of the pavement on Chapel Lane and widening of the lane for two vehicles. This is because I use the exit to Chapel Lane as the main point of entry to my property on a daily basis, as well as for putting out rubbish to the designated collection point for my property on Arcot Street. I am also extremely concerned about my neighbour, who is an elderly lady (92) who is unsteady on her feet and has a history of falls and also uses the exit to Chapel Lane as her only way to access her property. Could I suggest a one-way system to remove the need for removal of the pavement and widening of the lane?

 

==========================================

March 28, 44 Arcot Street, KD & JV Lemon

We strongly object to the road widening proposals being introduced into Chapel Lane due to the immediate proximity to our home. We believe it would be dangerous, as the single width traffic which is already in existence, has previously caused issues to our safety whilst inside our home. Also there is a side access area to our home which is frequently used and has also  proven  a danger previously with single width traffic is place. I am concerned as my mother who is 87 and seriously arthritic and has other health concerns sleeps in the front room of our property adjacent to this road. Previously the main side wall of our house in Chapel Lane has been hit by a vehicle; hence there is now a bollard in place erected by the Vale of Glamorgan council as a safety precaution. By introducing two-way width traffic in Chapel Lane it will then double the risk of our safety to our person and our property. Also Chapel Lane will then most likely be used as a place to park cars once again causing a safety issue to our property but also a noise nuisance with cars going up and down all hours of the day and night and car lights, and car doors opening and closing but also cause loitering around the area directly outside our home, within Chapel Lane where our side entrance is located, which then poses a security risk to our property if and indeed when car users loiter. It is also a serious concern that these plans being submitted by Newydd, if permitted, will adversely affect our property value and my mother has lived in this house for over 60 years.

We firmly object to these plans being approved and firmly believe that there are too many flats being proposed and there is inadequate road space and parking to accommodate an already overly populated and indeed traffic dense area and firmly object to a two way width traffic system and road alterations being made in Chapel Lane and then being used as parking area for over spilling traffic and parking at the risk of our safety and the safety of our property and indeed value of our property. We object strongly to these proposals.

This is on behalf of myself and my mother who unfortunately is unable to submit her objections via email herself and therefore gives her consent to my speaking and on her behalf which results in this email counting as two objections from above address.

 

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March 29, 36a Arcot Street, James Mayer – see also Jan 2

Very little has changed in the revised plans, and those changes seem to have made things worse.

Below are my original objections, which still stand. I pointed out that the footway was not wide enough. Now I see that the footway is being removed all together. How can this be considered either safe or an improvement?

 

==========================================

April 1, 6 Meliden Road, Miss Rosanna Hughes – see also Jan 8

I am the owner of 6 The Royal, Queens Road. My tenants have told me it is already almost impossible to park in this area during evenings and weekends. This development is going to make matters a lot worse. Any development on this site needs many more parking spaces than currently planned otherwise there will be significant disruption to the lives of existing residents. They are also worried about how busy the lane will become because of increased parking and traffic.

 

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April 3, 25 Arcot Street, Philip Sky

Please see my comments on previous iterations of this scheme. How are cars and pedestrians going to safely use Chapel Lane?

 

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April 7, Flat 9, The Royal, Mr Adam Jurd – see also Jan 8 and Feb 26

Parking is already at and over capacity in the area. The additional 5 spaces with be completely inadequate. There are no clear plans for the communal space and it would unlikely be economically viable as there will be insufficient parking. The building’s windows above a certain height will overlook other properties. Additionally the height of the building will cut out sunlight to nearby properties. There is an issue with access. Widening the lane will be impractical and take away pedestrian access. Furthermore, traffic in the lane will cause noise and air quality issues. The design of the building is not in keeping with properties in the area. There has not been sufficient consultation, other than the repeated planning applications. There was already a plan in place to use this as a community space accepted by residents but was refused. It makes no sense to refuse this and then apply for planning on a project which residents are clearly unhappy with.

 

==========================================

April 8, 26 Arcot Street, Dr Alison Game – see also Jan 11

•        •           The Highways Agency document of 12/01/2018 clearly states that ‘…the footway is required to be widened to 2.0m between the junction with Arcot Street and the proposed pedestrian access serving the proposed apartments.’

So how can Newydd now plan to completely remove it? This lane is well-used by pedestrians and this change will endanger them.

•        •           Previously the residents’ bin store had been quietly moved from adjacent to the flats’ main entrance (2024-002C) to an inaccessible position at the rear of the building (2024-002D). There is enough rubbish dumped outside St Paul’s at the moment without making the situation even worse by poor design.

However on 4th April yet another elevation plan (2024-004I) appeared with the bin store seemingly back by the front entrance, although the drawings are far from clear. There are no site plans to accompany this and no explanation for it. There is a reference to Revision H, which I am unable to find. Would it be possible to clarify this please?

•        •           Overall, these regular changes to the plans strike me as all smoke and mirrors. This scheme needs to be completely redesigned with far fewer flats, a parking space for each, amenity space for the residents and a spacious, useable community space at the front – then everyone will be happy.

•        I hope that, prior to any discussion, the Planning Committee will make a site visit to see for themselves the location of this proposed development, and the enclosed nature of the space.

Please, as our elected representatives, put a temporary halt on this development so that further community consultation can find a solution that suits everyone.

 

==========================================

April 9, 49 Arcot Street, Tim Land – see also Jan 25 and March 9

1.         Objection – Removal of Pedestrian Footpath
2.         Objection – Partial Chapel Lane infrastructure
3.         Objection – Bin Store re-location
4.         Objection – Loss of amenity space
5.         Objection – Loss of rear pedestrian access
Amendments and changes demonstrate overall problem with site design

The amended plans represent changes to the original design brought about from objections and recommendations, both from residents and infrastructure agencies. It is understood that any design will undergo change but this demonstrates the piecemeal approach in the design process and underlines the fundamental problem with the project: Over development is attempting to squeeze too much onto the site and it is the residential aspect that is generating the greatest resource stress on the local area. The proposed number of dwellings is too many and it is causing design problems as is obvious by these amendments.

The number of dwellings need to be reduced to afford proper design consideration for all residents and community members.

The original designs sought to re-imagine the area by ‘opening up’ Chapel Lane and the rear lane as an access point for the site. This was a much-promoted aspect to the design proposal and suggested how ‘natural surveillance’ with the increased access would reduce fly-tipping and criminal activities. In numerous requests by residents to VoG and councillors to address the problems in Chapel Lane it has been stated that St Paul’s will be the fix. A residents’ meeting attended by local architect Chris Lyons also helped to promote the design vision of an open site to afford urban renewal. Other issues aside (community space and number of dwellings) this was an attractive proposition for making the site work for any intended residents and for adding community value to the area.

The new amended plans have closed the site off to rear access and natural surveillance, reduced the quality of amenity space and inhibit pedestrian use in Chapel Lane. It is a fundamental change in design principle and has weakened the concept of the project and the proposal of renewal and development.

The recent amendments should be measured against the policy used by WYG in their design statement:

WYG Planning Statement Pg 11 – quoting VOG LDP – Policy MD2

– where appropriate, provide new or enhanced areas of public realm particularly in key locations such as town centres,

– promote the creation of healthy and active environments and reduce the opportunity for crime and anti-social behaviour.

Design changes and objections.

1.         Objection – Removal of Pedestrian Footpath (Safety)
Amended plans submitted onto the portal 15th March show proposed site plan 2024-002I as having removed the pedestrian footpath.

The removal of the existing footpath is a significant change to the site that will compromise pedestrian safety. With the introduction of the rear car park and increased traffic to Chapel Lane the lack of a footpath will cause safety issues for pedestrians regularly using the east west section.

The east-west section of Chapel Lane is a popular pedestrian highway that links significant sections of the local area. It is extensively used by school children, mothers and families, senior citizens, dog walkers, and general pedestrians to cut out the longer walk around Queens Road. It is an established pedestrian thoroughfare that will continue to be used short of blocking it up.

The existing footpath demonstrates the historical need and purpose of assured pedestrian safety. Currently, the lane is used by vehicles accessing garages, a residential dwelling, and by vehicles cutting between Glebe St / Arcot St. The footpath is essential for pedestrian safety. Previous designs for the St Pauls site show the retention of the footpath and indeed its widening at the Arcot St end as recommended by VoG Highways Agency. This seemed logical considering the addition of a car park and increased traffic in the lane.

With the amended design, it is to be assumed that several factors may have changed the original design that included the footpath (although a narrative from the designers and planners would be useful, one can only glean through the bare minimum documentation as to what is taking place).

Access for emergency vehicles seems to be one reason for widening the lane and has therefore resulted in removing the footpath (access for emergency vehicles has been stated by residents before – why has a multi-national design company missed this most basic fact and design consideration? This should have been factored into the initial design and site footprint).

The other reason seems to suggest that removing the footpath and widening the road allows for vehicle access primarily from Arcot Street (WYG email 15/3/18 states “two lane width for cars passing” in Chapel Lane). There is not enough evidence for why this design has been implemented (spreading the access points across Glebe / Salop and Arcot would make more sense and as was implied by the original design proposal). This will now cause a traffic hotspot on the Arcot St access. This approach also serves to lessen the burden of Chapel Lane infrastructure, the email from WYG also states:

“As discussed Newydd are in agreement to the proposed resurfacing works only (around the boundary of the site) They are not in agreement to any other works to Chapel Lane and the rear lane.”

It is clear that creating proper vehicle access would require resurfacing the whole of Chapel Lane / rear lane. In concentrating vehicle access to Arcot St this has conveniently removed the cost of further Chapel Lane resurfacing. This approach is only possible by removing the footpath.

You cannot ‘value engineer’ on pedestrian safety. There needs to be retention of the footpath in Chapel Lane as according to proper highway safety conventions.

WYG Planning Statement Pg 11 – quoting VOG LDP – Policy MD2

– have no unacceptable impact on highway safety nor cause or exacerbate existing traffic congestion to an unacceptable degree.

2.         Objection – Partial Chapel Lane infrastructure
The site design should require that Chapel Lane (East to West and North to South) is fully resurfaced with lighting. The partial approach will not solve the current issues of fly-tipping and criminal activities. Any part of the lane that is left in the current condition will continue to attract the problems and still affect the St Paul’s site and the quality of the residential dwellings. There seems to be an issue of responsibility with the lane area between the council and Newydd with either side not wishing to absorb cost. This demonstrates the lack of understanding that the lane environment will have on the project and the wellbeing of residents.

Newydd /WYG need to reflect on their award-winning builds in Barry and why they are correctly positioned with modern infrastructure surrounding the sites. This design principle needs to be applied to St Paul’s if it is to be effective.

3.         Objection – Bin Store re-location
The amended plans on the planning portal 2024-002I show that the bin store has been moved from the Chapel Lane entrance on the north of the building back to its original position on the south side of the building. Residents spoke at length with WYG / Newydd through consultation phases as to why this was a poor design based on the practice and knowledge of refuse collection in the area. The area already has an issue with poor refuse collection management, both on the part of the council and some residents. Proper design as to the efficient management and collection of refuse for St Paul’s is obvious so it will not add to the current problem (which still needs to be solved – the mass dumping of rubbish from the Royal Hotel apartments outside St Paul’s – please see appendix pictures).

By placing the rubbish store in Chapel Lane it would simplify the process of putting out the rubbish and possibly allow for direct removal by refuse truck if widening Chapel Lane allows for a short reverse manoeuvre. (But the lane still requires a footpath).

It is not clear if a caretaker or such will be responsible for the rubbish. Communal responsibility in flats is a notoriously problematic approach if it is not properly designed.

Leaving the bin store on the south side incurs a long walk through the community centre access path and will incur large volumes of rubbish ending up outside the community centre – especially at a time when the centre is likely to be used. (Also note in the appendix pictures the extent to which bags are broken open by seagulls and the waste spilling out onto the street… VoG do not provide a sufficient solution to this problem – possibly look at Brighton Council’s approach to seagull nuisance).

Note: There is a further elevation plan submitted on the portal 4/4/18 – 2024-004I showing the bin store elevation back on the north side of the building. Is it to be understood this is a further amendment to the amendment? There is no site plan to properly confirm this.

4.         Objection – Loss of amenity space
Previous plans (2024-002C) showed an amenity seating area in the rear of the site. The need for shared space to foster wellbeing and community for St Paul’s residents has been discussed and raised with WYG / Newydd. A simple seating area is very effective for enjoying outdoor space and developing neighbourly relations. The removal of this space is problematic and decreases the opportunity for residential interaction. This is detracting from the original design proposal of inclusive and communal living and demonstrates the over density of the design. Why has it been removed? It would appear that greater space has been given to car access and manoeuvring. (Again, how is it that basic design principles have been missed on this project – surely WYG should know how much space is needed for proper vehicle access?).

VoG planning guidance states:

Amenity Space Within Residential Developments

POLICY 2: THE COUNCIL WILL ENSURE THAT USABLE, ADEQUATE AND APPROPRIATE PRIVATE AMENITY SPACE IS PROVIDED AS PART OF RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT.

The amenity space needs to be retained to offer some basic outside access for residents of St Paul’s. All other properties in the area have this feature.

5.         Objection – Loss of rear pedestrian access
The removal of pedestrian access to the rear also conflates the issue with changing the original design. It concedes that Chapel Lane is grotty and does not offer a solution other than avoiding it. This also concentrates access to the Chapel Lane / Arcot entrance increasing footfall and possibilities for disturbances to existing residents. On a street with no gardens funnelling 30+ people into one small entrance point constitutes a development that will affect current residents.

VoG planning guidance states:

Residential Privacy and Amenity

POLICY 3: THE CONSTRUCTION OF NEW RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT MUST RESPECT THE CHARACTER OF EXISTING RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT, WHILST ENSURING THAT THE PRIVACY AND AMENITY OF SURROUNDING PROPERTIES ARE SAFEGUARDED.

Furthermore, there will be a loss of natural surveillance with lack of rear pedestrian access, (also added to by loss of amenity space and window obscuring). This will contravene the WYG design statement as submitted for the application:

WYG Planning Statement Pg 22

• an environment where neighbours interact regularly ensuring high levels of natural surveillance – particularly for the rear access lane.

WYG Planning Statement Pg 23

• Improve the levels of natural surveillance in the area benefiting the safety and security of the area.

The rear pedestrian access should be retained to fulfil the original design principles – spreading access and improving natural surveillance.

Conclusion

The amendments are now demonstrating significant changes from the design statements originally submitted by WYG / Newydd.  The entire application should be re-submitted with a new design statement and a re-design to properly afford the considerations the site offers.

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12 Responses to NOW 58 LOCAL RESIDENTS OBJECT TO LABOUR’S SOCIAL-HOUSING SCHEME FOR ST PAUL’S

  1. AK says:

    Why ‘Labour’s social housing scheme’? Surely it is the developer’s scheme?

    Why is everyone so snobbish about social housing? Isn’t it just like council housing used to be before it all got sold off? Wasn’t that also heavily subsidised (and poorly built and maintained in many cases).

    Amenity space ? It’s called Plassey Square and the park below Paget Road.

    People who need subsidised rent may not be able to afford to run 1.5 cars.

    • Kate says:

      To be fair, the objections are not because it’s social housing. Infact at the public meetings to date, people have been supportive of the social housing aspect. The concerns mainly centre around overdevelopment, the impact on the area and a lack of engagement on the community facility. People want this to work for everyone, but it has to be thought through properly.

  2. Chris David says:

    PTC- Il piccolo fascista knows best. We shouldn’t need subsidised housing- If we had a system whereby employers had to pay a real living wage with no tax credits- an incredibly bad system (whereby we subsidise large employers by subsidising their payroll) and those able on benefits working in the community for their money they could afford rent. But practically 14 flats and parking for 5 is just bonkers, but the dictators will have their way just as with Northcliffe.

  3. Steven says:

    Omg. Found the end of the thread!

  4. Ben Dover says:

    My mouse broke, trying to scroll all the way down this thread.

  5. FairsFair says:

    Just as a point of interest, what amenity space and parking provisions are available to the owners/residents of ‘The Royal’ apartment block and cottages?

  6. Caress Morell says:

    I have to say that the objections are all largely sound: the over-development per se is not the issue, but the need for parking and amenity space is.

    I was once a social housing tenant. I work in the public sector, doing a job that is not that well paid. Living in an area with a fairly high cost of living meant social housing was a real option for me to live affordably. I paid rent, all by my self, as will most, if not all, of these tenants. Now I live in a house, all of my own, that I bought, in Penarth with a 25% deposit, using money I saved. Housing associations can be a valuable short to mid-term stepping stone for folk, and in any case are not in the business of taking those on housing benefits, generally. Not that there’s anything wrong with being in reciept of said benefit… but generally they continue to be housed in council owned or managed accommodation.

  7. Kalan says:

    Penarth is an expensive place to rent, and private tenancies offer little security, so we should be supportive of initiatives that offer a better option for the lower paid, or those trying to save for a deposit. This scheme is not unacceptable because it’s social housing, or because it was originally a labour council scheme, but because too many flats are being shoehorned into too small a space, without sufficient parking provision. By the way, I am not a tenant so I have no personal interest in whether the development goes ahead.

  8. OB says:

    Parking is the issue, not social housing. And it will be decided by the planning committee of the Conservative controlled Vale of Glamorgan Council.

  9. Steven says:

    Like the development at Cogan too few parking spaces provided for apartments at the detriment of local residents.

  10. Denxil says:

    Recommended for approval but goes to committee on the 26th of April.

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