Friday, March 29, 2013

Swindon planners propose to adopt developers' design code

The papers relating to Swindon Council’s Planning Committee for Tuesday, 9th April, 2013 6.00 p.m. are up on the Council’s website.
Agenda Item 6 relates to the design code for the Coate development that the planning Officer recommends for approval as presented by the developers.
The Planning officer has not addressed many of the points raised and has misrepresented what was said by the Jefferies Land Conservation Trust and, we suspect, by others. When outline planning permission was granted, we were told that detail would be sorted out at a later stage. Evidently, now we are at the later stage, we are informed that certain details were approved with planning permission (such as the height of buildings). One of our main concerns was that the tallest buildings were proposed to be placed on the highest contours of the land. Evidently, this matter cannot be changed. However Swindon Council has agreed that there should be more variation in the building materials used.
The officer’s report says:
An additional public meeting is to be held on 4th April at the request of
the Commonhead Parish Liaison Group. Any outcomes from this meeting will
be reported verbally at Planning Committee. As a result of the consultation, 25
comments were received from consultees, organisations and members of the
public. A summary of the comments made and a brief officer response can be
found at Appendix 1
10. Comments made as a result of the consultation exercise have been
reported back to the developer and a revised code document has been
received having been amended to incorporate relevant and justified
and her conclusion:
21. The submitted Design Code fulfils the requirements of the condition
and indicates a style of design that would be appropriate for an extension to
Swindon’s urban area in this location. This Design Code will secure high
quality designed housing and other facilities and it is hoped that this will result
in a development that people will want to live in.
 So some changes to the design are supposed to have been made but we don’t know what. Having seen the plans for the building approved at the Sun Inn by Swindon Council a few days ago (which are absolutely ghastly and totally out of keeping with the Richard Jefferies Museum (a Grade II listed building), we can’t say that we are surprised now at anything that Swindon Council approves.