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Garden Community (Mega City?) given the go ahead by the Inspector

The Inspector has now produced his report on Part 1 of the Local Plan and with some tweaks found it sound. As feared this means the garden community near us is included in the Plan.

This has implications for Wivenhoe. Congestion on the A133 is likely to get even worse. Given that there is a lot of North Essex it seems odd that the only major development in the Plan is for a site adjacent to one of the busiest, most congested roads into Colchester, with no rail onnection.

A Development Plan Document (DPD) setting out more detailed proposals for the GC will be produced, allegedly in consultation with the Local Community. It is important that we all use any opportunities to influence the outcome. The Inspector has left details about coalescence breaks, detailed layout and timing of the provision of community facilities to be decided in the DPD. Various responses to the consultation had argued that the A133 formed a suitable boundary for development but he did not endorse this considering it a DPD matter.

Is there anything good in this from Wivenhoe's point of view? The link road between the A133 and the A120 could be a benefit but it may itself generate extra traffic quite apart from the trips generated by the proposed new housing. There is the potential that a Country Park incorporating Salary Brook and adjacent land could be created.

You can see the Inspector's report and the modifications made to the draft plan at the site below. Click on 4

https://www.braintree.gov.uk/planning-building-control/section-1-examination/4?documentId=230&categoryId=20010

Comments

  • The other new kid on the block which is a website devoted to the new garden community. That has imaginatively been called TBC. It can be found at https://tcbgardencommunity.co.uk

    On there is a list of frequently asked questions with 'answers'. Although I accept these possible may have needed to be toned down to be accessible to a larger audience, they should come with the warning - Could contain BS.

    below are the questions and answers fro the website. Plus my answers and additional questions in italics.

    WARNING WE GO ON A BIT!


    Why is the Tendring/Colchester Borders Garden Community needed? 

    North Essex has seen significant increases in its population – and this is predicted to continue rising in the future.

    The significant increase in our population has happened because we have over delivered on our housing quotas for at least 15 years. Therefore, we have had significant migration here. The increase in population is not due to any particular surge in the birth rate. Household formations are actually declining.

     To meet the demand for new homes, Colchester and Tendring have a legal requirement from central Government to meet ambitious housing delivery targets.

    We will easily meet the government housing delivery targets without the garden communities with annual windfall sites and Tendering has a huge surplus thanks to all the speculative development. As clarified by the inspector the garden communities represent a 13% over delivery in the plan period. Additionally, there is no need, or legal necessity, whatsoever to plan 60 years ahead.

     We have looked at all potential options for supporting these additional homes, including continuing to expand existing towns and villages.

    We have dismissed completely credible alternatives, (I can list them all if anyone is not sure where they are, but a Wheely GC is an obvious one), that were far better suited sites. The TBC site was chosen because there was a willing landowner and for political reasons, i.e. Tendering didn’t want the burden on their infrastructure but wanted all that council tax, and we didn’t bother to put up a fight. This plays badly with the electorate – the message is we are weak and are unable to stand up our neighbours.

     However, this approach has historically seen new homes built without the necessary expansion of local services to support the needs of the new residents. This also negatively impacts on the quality of life for the existing residents, as well as new ones. 

    Is still anyone under the impression that the GC won’t put a burden on existing communities? 

     Expanding current villages and towns also pushes new residents away from existing centres, encouraging them to drive to access shops, leisure facilities and places of work.

    The TBC garden community will be car dependent and new residents will drive to shops, leisure facilities and places of work. 

     A new Garden Community gives us the chance to change this in the future by developing a community around the new schools, health facilities, and job opportunities.

    You can’t build a community around a secondary school or a health centre until there are at least 4,500 residents in it.  Which at a build out rate of 250 homes, will take18 years! In the meantime, everyone will need to drive to existing services which are already at capacity. ECCs trigger point for a primary school is (I think) 1,800. As Wivenhoe is already having to put kids in temporary classrooms that 7 year gap will mean parents will need to drive even further afield. 

     What employers have said they are willing to move to this site? Apart from the university student start-ups that are clearly not going to be for local people no one has expressed an interest. All the fluffy work done by consultants has produced nothing but speculation and that is before the economic fall-out of COVID and Brexit has been considered.

     The new development could also help with issues we are currently facing – including congestion. As part of the plans for the Garden Community we are looking to develop a Rapid Transit System, potentially a trackless tram, which will improve connectivity and relieve congestion for everyone living, working and visiting in the area.

    The last thing 9000 homes will do is reduce congestion and it is ridiculous to suggest it will. Stop telling the public things like ‘it will improve air quality’ and ‘it will reduce traffic through Elmstead’, because they are blatant lies. Traffic modelling reports by Jacobs conclude that the link road will create additional congestion all over the place but as an example they specify: -

    • The A12 between Junctions 28 and 29 in both directions.

    • The A12 at Junction 26 in the PM peak.

    • Haven Road and Colne Causeway 

    • Greenstead Roundabout 

    • Ipswich Road 

    • Lexden Road/Southway

     Additionally, at no point has there ever been a working viability model for a Rapid Transit System that extends to a trackless tram. We simply can’t, and have never been able to, afford anything but a bus.

     Other examples include the creation of job opportunities, new areas of open space for everyone to enjoy, and specially managed areas of natural space to support wildlife. 

    Currently the site is one big open space that supports wildlife. ECCs environmental report also concludes that insufficient scoping has been done to determine what will be lost to concrete and blames COVID for this. 

     If the proposals for the Garden Community are not taken forward, then the homes needed for North Essex will still need to be built and lots of additional sites will need to be found.

    If the proposal for the Garden Community was not taken forward, then we would not need to do anything for 15 years thanks to section 2 allocations. Local plans are for 15 years for a reason – the additional growth will expand our annual numbers and all wards could be under threat because of this. 

    The Tendring/Colchester Borders Garden Community, which would involve the provision of up to 7,500 - 9,000 homes (to be built over many years), is part of a long-term vision of Colchester Borough Council and Tendring District Council in partnership with Essex County Council to help meet the future growth of the area in a more strategic way.

    A strategic view for North East Essex could have looked at a transport-oriented plan linked to employment hubs, rather than using a call for sites and willing landowners to determine it.

      

    Isn’t this Garden Community just another name for a new housing development?

     

    Absolutely not, and we are committed to delivering a quality new community, embracing the Garden City approach and principles, as a way of meeting the Government’s housing targets in a sustainable way.

    Yes. A Genuine garden City approach is expensive and not what we are doing. If the commitment is there, then why are so many aspects of it been compromised already? Effectively it’s not a Garden Community – it is an extension to Colchester and not a discreet and independent settlement, as dictated by Garden Community principles. 

    This involves an approach where we have more of a say in design and developing the services and facilities needed to support the new homes. This new approach would see us, working with other public and private sector bodies, to create sustainable development backed by robust plans, ensuring high quality.

    To date none of the views submitted by the public to any of the consultations have been taken on board. A simple example is – please don’t build south of the A133 because it will create coalescence with Wivenhoe. Which would fly in the face of garden community principles. During election season everyone agreed to ‘no development south of the A133’ but we were subsequently presented plans in the evidence base that had development there! If you want the public on board and to trust you with any engagement work, then you have to at least keep the promises you have already made.

    We will produce a Development Plan Document (DPD) for the Garden Community, containing policies setting out how the new community will be designed, developed and delivered in phases, in accordance with our key principles. No planning consent for development forming part of the Garden Community will be granted until the DPD has been adopted.  

    If garden principles had been hard wired into section one policy, then we could trust the DPD to follow them. But they are missing. And regardless of that all the viability work shows we can’t afford to build that way. Infrastructure first is a lot bigger than building a £75 million dual carriageway when the need for it is only justified by being able to service 9000 houses and something someone at the university might like.  

     These principles will include things such as community and stakeholder engagement; ensuring the timely delivery of both on-site and off-site infrastructure; the highest quality of planning and design; balanced and inclusive housing needs (including a mix of dwelling sizes, tenures and types); provision for Gypsies and Travellers; 30% affordable housing; opportunities for employment;  sustainable transport systems; climate resilience; net gains in local biodiversity, highest standards of energy efficiency and innovation in technology; innovative water efficiency/reuse measures; and establishing a long term governance and stewardship arrangements for community assets, including green space.


    What Makes a Garden Community Different?

    A Garden Community is a planned new community which will be a sustainable and attractive place to live, work and visit for all. The principles behind a Garden Community is that it is infrastructure-led, and this is something we are committed to. This means all the essential facilities and services – like schools, health services, roads and transport systems, and jobs – would all be available as the community grows. This is instead of the normal method of continually adding housing developments to our urban areas without the necessary infrastructure or only limited expansion of existing services and facilities. This approach detrimentally impacts our residents.   

    Importantly, the Garden Community will not result in any additional new homes that would not otherwise be built in the area.  To further develop the community, feel, residents will have the chance to have a say on the management and maintenance of open spaces and other community facilities within the development. Community engagement is key to any Garden Community which is why residents from existing settlements will also have the opportunity to have a say on key issues as development takes place.

    See earlier reasons why infrastructure will not arrive any faster than normal development. As we are still dependent on ECC trigger points for schools and health care facilities. As for community engagement - experience has taught me that it will lead to nothing, but I live in hope. 


    What will be the big differences living in a Garden Community to living on a new housing estate now?

    The Garden Community will be built to the highest design standards, with plenty of green space. 

    How will we enforce the highest design standards when we aren’t able to currently? 

    People will have the choice as to how they want to travel around the area. While obviously they could have their own cars, they will also have access to safe and attractive walking and cycling routes, world class public transport and latest green technology supporting electric vehicles close to their homes.

    For world class public transport - read a bus. A bus that will jeopardise other less profitable routes serving existing communities. 

     Importantly, through the long-term stewardship of community assets such as green spaces and commercial buildings, residents will have a say over their community and will have a powerful voice in how they are run.

    Please can you confirm which local authority this site will be under. 

     

    The key aim of the Garden Community is to create high quality environments where communities thrive. The Garden Community will be designed with jobs close by which are easily accessible, and also promote the move towards increasing home working with superfast broadband. Ultimately therefore, Garden Communities are all about raising the quality of life of residents. 

    I doubt there are any councillors who have not sadly seen employment land allocated, that then evidential gets turned over into houses. Contractors wrongly claiming the sites were unviable when the reality is there is more profit in building houses. I simply don’t see how we can secure jobs on this site and so if the one job per household doesn’t materialise will we be happy to halt construction until they do? 

     

    Will there be more open space in the Garden Community?

    A significant amount of the new Garden Community is to be open space, which is far greater than traditional developments. This open space will take a number of forms including recreational areas, sports facilities, play areas and new nature reserves. 

    There will be significantly less than the 424.17 hectors there is now.


    Isn’t there enough brownfield land for new housing?

    Given the scale of the housing challenge, not just locally but nationally, we need to develop both brownfield and greenfield sites. We have an exceptional record of prioritising brownfield land for residential developments, but this has led to most of this previously developed land running out.

    When was the last call for brownfield sites for the whole of the Borough and not just Colchester town? I have heard there are landowners willing to develop brownfield sites outside of the central area that are being constantly knocked back.

      

    What will be the impact on the environment of the Garden Community?

    There is a challenge in providing new homes, while also protecting our precious wildlife and beautiful countryside. However, recent developments in the UK and abroad have shown new developments can improve the environment, reduce carbon emissions and improve local biodiversity. There are significant opportunities to learn from these developments including embracing the latest innovations in housing designs as well as exploring how renewable energy can be captured and reused at the Garden Community. It is now a national requirement to ensure all new development results in a ‘net gain’ of biodiversity. However, the Garden Community presents an opportunity for us to go far beyond the bare minimum, for example by transforming large areas of agricultural land into ‘rewilded’ woodland and other natural habitats. We have policies set out to ensure that design and infrastructure for the Garden Community will incorporate the highest standards of innovation in energy efficiency and technology to reduce the impact of climate change, ensure water efficiency, and implement sustainable waste / recycling management facilities. We will ensure the new development does not have an adverse effect on any European Protected or nationally important site and that it complies with environmental legislation.

    You can’t ensure the new development will not have an adverse effect on any European Protected or nationally important sites, with a couple of education posters and part time wardens. These are hardly adequate measures to safeguard the longest coastline in the Country. Therefore, it is entirely speculative that the long term effects of this development WILL comply with any national or European legislation.  

    Although it is arguable that a rewilded area can be more environmentally friendly than farmland, none of the aspirations outlined here could justify the destruction of the highest-grade arable land in the county. If we continue to concrete and tarmac over farmland, then soon there is no alternative but to import food from elsewhere. Which has consequences in terms of air and road miles. Ultimately no amount of rewilding will compensate for this. 

  • PART TWO - i did warn it when on a bit!


    Is there enough water to sustain this Garden Community?

     

    Yes, the water companies will supply water to sustain the Garden Community and future development elsewhere in North Essex.  Water companies are required to prepare Water Resource Management Plans (WRMP) at least once every 5 years to set out how water supply will be managed to meet current and future needs over a minimum period of 25 years.

    No, the water companies may have a legal responsibility to supply water to sustain the Garden Community and future development elsewhere in North Essex.  However as yet there have been unsuccessful in securing a supply (and they have been looking for many years now). Last rumour I heard was it could be pumped down from the midlands, but no one knew how to fund the pipeline for that. This lack of clarity should worry everyone. 

     

    How will waste water be dealt with?

     

    Anglian Water, as sewerage undertaker, is responsible for funding any required investment to ensure that capacity is made available at water recycling centres in time to serve development in the company area. Anglian Water have prepared a Water Recycling Long Term Plan (WRLTP) which outlines the planned investment at both existing water recycling centres and sewerage network to accommodate development to 2045.

    Water companies are also responsible for Water Resource Management Plans (WRMP) and the current solution to overcapacity is to relax the discharge policy and pump sewage into the river. The only treatment process they have to comply with is a first stage treatment (which I believe is being exposed to the sun). No other process, or breakdown of solid waste, has to take place first. We are literally swimming in shit in Wivenhoe. 

     

    What will be the impact on other established communities?

     

    We are keen to protect the identity of established communities which is why we are promoting a Garden Community and not scattered uncoordinated development.  We will ensure those residents are consulted and informed throughout the development of the new community. 

     

    The Garden Community will be surrounded with green areas while new roads, footpaths, cycleways and a Rapid Transit System will connect surrounding areas to the new settlements to enable everyone to benefit from the new development. Existing communities will be able to benefit from the enhanced community facilities and open spaces provided by the Garden Community

    Are you in a position to guarantee the CG will not straddle either the dual carriageway to the east, the north or the south? Existing communities have up until now been able to benefit from the open space on this site. There isn’t financial provision for very much community facilities at all in the viability or phasing and infrastructure evidence. Do we have a magic money tree that will pay for them that hasn’t been revealed yet? The residents of the GC are far more likely to use the facilities in surrounding communities than the other way round. For instance, how many churches are planned on the GC site? Will they have a sailing club, a cricket club, a bowls club and a dance club - to mention a fraction of the community provision that no doubt new residents will want to enjoy but won’t have in their own settlement. 

     

     

    Will there be more council and affordable housing within the Garden Community?

    We have set out in policy our intent that a minimum of 30% of new housing in the Garden Community to be classed as affordable (including the potential for more social housing) by the Government’s definition. The affordable housing will be phased through the development.  Additionally, there is an opportunity to build new housing for specific groups such as older people and people with disabilities. This Garden Community will provide a truly balanced and inclusive community. We will make sure it meets the housing needs of local people including a mix of dwelling sizes, tenures and types, provision for self- and custom-built homes, provision for the aging population, and provision for Gypsies and Travellers.

     

    The word ‘intent’ is noted in the provision of 30 % affordable. Has it been confirmed yet who will be eligible for these homes as they will be built mostly in Tendering. I know there is a saving of 30 million if you change the tenure split to reduce social rented provision below CBC‘s current policy.  However, the greatest need is social rented, and the GC’s should at least be compliant with our own policy. If we use poor viability as an excuse not to, then what can we expect from other developers?

     

    Is the provision for Gypsies and Travellers a permanent or temporary site? And why is this linked to garden communities and not more generally to the local plan? A far more sensible site would be adjacent to the A12, so why is this not being pursued?

     

    What public transport comes with Garden Communities?

     

    The Garden Community will be served by innovative public transport including a Rapid Transit System (RTS) connecting the new development with Colchester and onward destinations. The RTS has been made possible thanks to a successful Housing Infrastructure Fund bid, submitted by Essex County Council. Additional transport facilities will include the provision of a network of footpaths, cycleways and bridleways to enhance sustainable transport options and link in with the wider strategic and local road network. 

     

    The Garden Community will be served by a bus. The bus has been made possible thanks to a successful Housing Infrastructure Fund bid, submitted by Essex County Council. However, because of the clauses in the HIF grant the plans will be scaled back, not if but when, the link road goes over the delivery date (which is in the control of ECC, but have they ever done a project on time and in budget? Or if the 106 money isn’t collected on time, or the houses aren’t built to the time frames the government sets (neither of which are in the control of ECC). However, this is entirely academic as people will not use the bus. You only have to look at the existing Park and Ride to see that buses are not the answer. 

     

    Will the new A120/A133 link road be in place before the house building starts?

     

    Absolutely. We are committed to the ‘infrastructure first’ approach. The condition of the road funding we successfully secured requires that it is built on a tight timetable, so it will be delivered during 2024, in time for people to move into the first homes.

    Let’s hope the link road is built on time, so the government can’t ask for their money back. And let’s hope it’s on budget and ECC have spare money to sponsor the missing £10 million, otherwise the  un-rapid bus would have to be ‘scaled back’. To what, I don’t dare imagine. But let’s not fall into the trap that infrastructure is just transport. Any holistically planned settlement needs community facilities, places of worship, and unique local attractions. Facilities that currently are not in any way fully costed in the viability, that will make this anything other than a sprawling housing estate? The GC has no identity – that is a huge problem if you want anything other than a transient population. 

     

    Won't the new A120/A133 'split' the Garden Community? 

    The new link road is a vital part of our commitment to ‘infrastructure first’. Such an important transport provision is crucial for the Garden Community and wider area. Whilst masterplanning is yet to be undertaken, one of the rationales for selecting the chosen route is that it aligns best with the initial conceptual idea for the route to be located towards the eastern side of the Garden Community. Primary points of connection from the Link Road to the Garden Community will be through a series of roundabouts.

    It would help public confidence if you addressed the question here. Or maybe answer this one instead - Will there be any development east of the link road, or south of the A133? 

     

    When will the proposed Rapid Transit System be available?

     

    In August 2019 the Government awarded £30million from the Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) towards the first phase of the Rapid Transit Scheme (RTS).  This will be used to develop a route through Colchester from the Park and Ride in North Colchester through the Town Centre and onward to the Garden Community.  The route through the Garden Community will be agreed through the planning process and will allow for accessibility to the scheme from the very start of the delivery of new housing. We are ambitious as to the use of new technology for the RTS and a modern tram-style system is our aspiration as soon as it can be delivered. 

    So, will there be a bus every 10 minutes in a segregated lane for the entire journey within a year of the first house?  

     

    Where will the funding come from to finance a tram-style system? Is the plan to build the RTS (bus route) at the highest end of the models looked at by Jacobs, as the inspector has asked for? If so, where is the additional funding coming from?

     

    Clingo Hill is already struggling with the current amount of traffic – how is it expected to cope with additional traffic from additional homes?

    There are significant amounts of traffic in several areas across the borough of Colchester and there are a number of ways of helping to ease this.

     

    Firstly, the new link road will help motorists to get directly onto the A120 and A12 via the new link road, avoiding coming into Colchester.

    What percentage of journeys from the east are expected to be diverted along this route? Have studies ever been done? It is the view of locals - that currently everyone east of Frating can already divert from the A133 to the A120, and so the link road will only be of benefit to around 4 villages. I only know the statistics for Wivenhoe but very few people commute by car via the A120 or A12 to further afield, compared to using the train, or driving into the centre of town to work. 

     

    What modelling has been done regarding the impact that 9,000 new homes being able to access Clingo Hill will have on it?

     

     

    Then there is the Rapid Transit System, which alongside the increasing use of other alternatives to the private car, will provide an alternative attractive means of travelling into Colchester and beyond.

    So far there is no evidence that the bus will either be quicker or cheaper than using the private car. Therefore, do you promise to stop building if the model shifts are not achieved? 

     

     

    Finally, the new Garden Community developments would encourage the majority of journeys to be within the new sites themselves, reducing the need to travel further.

     

    If the majority of journeys are intended to be within the new sites themselves, we really need to hurry up with the building or schools and health centre and make sure there are businesses interested in moving here. Additionally, the “Garden City premium” means that those moving here are unlikely to be able to sustain a mortgage on a local wage. 

     

    Will the trees along the Avenue of Remembrance in Colchester have to be removed to ensure it can cope with any additional traffic?

    While we still need to develop the details of any routes for the Rapid Transit System it is important that the route is segregated.

    However, we fully recognise the importance of the trees along Remembrance Avenue.

     

    Why doesn’t anyone recognise the importance of the trees along Clingo hill? You can’t fit a segregated route from the GC to the Clingo Hill roundabout, without pulling down trees. If the route isn’t segregated, then who will use the bus? 

     

     

     

    Where will shops, schools and medical facilities be sited and when will they be available?

    Essential services such as shops, schools and medical facilities will be located within neighbourhood centres throughout the Garden Community and will be available to serve the community in line with its growth.  Importantly, these facilities will be delivered on a phase by phase basis, ensuring that new homes are built with the infrastructure to support them. This means as the community grows, so will the infrastructure provided to support it.  

     

    Will we allow a decent sized supermarket on site or any other large scale retail?

    See earlier for what the real time scales are (as set out in the LA’s SA evidence base).

     

     

    Won't pressure be put on existing schools and medical facilities until new ones are built?

     

    Planning policies require that supporting infrastructure for the Garden Community is phased alongside development to ensure capacity keeps up with demand.  Some larger facilities such as secondary schools require larger catchment areas to warrant opening.  In these instances, we will work with infrastructure providers such as Essex County Council to ensure expansion of adjacent existing facilities as required prior to demand for a new facility reaching critical mass.  Education and health providers have a statutory requirement to meet needs and are continually exploring new delivery methods to address this demand such as increased use of digital communication and shared multi-purpose community facilities.

    The Colne and Millfields have already been told they have to expand to meet the need. It is unlikely the health centre in Wivenhoe will have capacity and no way you will get an NHS dentist between here and Clacton. They won’t even put people on the waiting list for the practice in Jaywick which was the last one to close their NHS books in Tendering.

     

     

    Where will the money come from to pay for the infrastructure and facilities?

     

    The infrastructure and facilities will be paid for through a range of different methods.Major pieces of infrastructure needed to support the Garden Community will be funded through central Government. For example, through the Government’s Housing Infrastructure Fund almost £100million has been given to us to build the A120/A133 link road for the Garden Community and to develop the Rapid Transit System in that part of the town.Any surplus made through land sales and housing developments would also be used to support the provision of facilities and services supporting the new development. The certainty of new housing receipts in the future will ensure that this infrastructure can be funded up front. 

     

    Any surplus money through land sales will involve us being the master developer. What are the plans for that now we know we can’t use CPO’s? 

  •  

    Where will the new jobs be?

    Employment opportunities will be located in the Garden Community in specially designed areas, as well as mixed in with residential areas. As and when we agree deals with businesses, this will be communicated. Planning mixed use areas encourages increased social interaction and reduces the need for people to drive to get to day to day facilities such as schools and shops. Additionally, the Covid-19 pandemic has introduced fundamental shifts to working patterns that can be expected to result in lasting increases to home working and the need for supporting services in nearby centres. The Garden Community model is well-suited to support these new ways of working and we will provide high speed and reliable broadband to enable this.The Garden Community is well located, with the University of Essex nearby as well as international gateways with Stansted Airport and the ports at Harwich and Felixstowe along the A120 corridor. We will allocate 25 hectares of employment land within the Garden Community and economic assessments have shown the equivalent of one job per new home built in the Garden Community is achievable. 

     

    So, to date there are no deals with businesses? Market fields are desperate for a site can they have one? Without attracting businesses we are creating a commuter zone that will create traffic.

     

    What happens next? 

    A project team from all three authorities has now been assembled. The priority now is to start the preparation work in order to produce the *Development Plan Document (DPD) over the next two years or so. This DPD will be produced with input from stakeholders and the community. An Engagement and Consultation strategy will outline how we will do this. We expect to launch this strategy by the end of the year (2020).  

    *A Development Plan Document is prepared by local planning authorities and outlines the key development goals of the local development framework. Once adopted, development control decisions must be made in accordance with them unless material considerations indicate otherwise. 

     

    What is happening regarding setting up a delivery company? And shouldn’t we wait for section 2 to get through examination before we start on a DPD? We can't really claim to have an adopted local plan yet can we? 


    The last part is a 10 point plan of what Garden cormmunitity principles are, but I'm not sharing that propaganda because I don't think that's what your getting.

  • Thank you for such a thorough analysis.

    If your interpretation is correct - and from your comments it looks like it is - I don't understand how other councillors at Colchester Borough Council can be supporting this? What long-term benefits can this bring to our borough or its residents? I see no mention of affordable or social housing for locals, for example.

    Realistically, is there anything we can now do? And who is respresenting Colchester (therefore Wivenhoe) on the project team? It would be reassuring if whoever that is could publicly address the concerns you've raised.

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