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Todmorden, Planning Objection
TPS was commissioned by ASDA to review and comment upon the Transport Planning elements of a planning application for retail floor space in Todmorden and to submit a letter of objection to the Council if our review highlighted deficiencies in the development proposals that might have detrimental impact on road safety and the operation of the local road network in Todmorden. This was with a view to ensuring that all planning matters were considered appropriately.
Having reviewed the accompanying information, particularly the Transport Assessment, TPS concluded that it:
- Did not adequately reflect upon and consider the concerns raised in previous public consultations;
- Did not seek to adequately reflect the potential traffic impacts of the proposed development; and
- Did not seek to mitigate the traffic impacts where such mitigation might be required.
It was our view, the information submitted did not provide the Council with the opportunity to soundly review and consider the potential adverse impacts of the proposed development, particularly in respect of the Council meeting its obligations under the Traffic Management Act to expedite movement of traffic on its road network.
Particularly, the proposed development was characterised by an over provision of car parking – which would encourage trips by the private car – and deficiencies in sustainable parking provision. The Transport Assessment did not adequately consider the impact of already committed development and incorrectly assumed the termination of retail operations on a vacated site.
Furthermore, the Applicant did not fully consider the potential for the continued use of car parking by visitors to other retail opportunities and services in the town centre. Consequently, the assessment of operational capacity of the site access was incorrect in terms of its underestimation of through and turning traffic movements.
Our representation to the Council, therefore, argued that that the Applicant had not satisfactorily demonstrated that the development would not result in a severe impact, in line with the requirements the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), and that the Council could not determine in favour of the application and, at the same time, guarantee its ability to secure the expeditious movement of traffic on the authority’s road network.
Following our representation to the Council, further, more detailed, information was submitted by the Applicant that addressed specifically the issues raised by TPS. Albeit the application was subsequently granted planning consent, TPS, in line with our brief, ensured that the development was considered appropriately and fully and that the design of the scheme included such amendments as to mitigate road safety and congestion issues.