Traffic concerns over Plumb Park homes plan

PUBLISHED: 06:30 13 October 2015 | UPDATED: 09:08 13 October 2015

Artist Impression of open space toward the Crescent at Plumb Park, Littleham, Exmouth.

Artist Impression of open space toward the Crescent at Plumb Park, Littleham, Exmouth.

Clifton Emery for Taylor Wimpey

'Complete chaos' at Littleham Cross road junction has been predicted by Avenues residents if plans for a 350-home housing development in Littleham go ahead.

Developer Clinton Devon Estates (CDE) is consulting on the design of the first 264 homes of its Plumb Park development, with a planning application to East Devon District Council expected later this year.

At The Avenues Residents’ Association (TARA) annual meeting on Friday, CDE’s John Varley and representatives of homebuilder Taylor Wimpey were questioned on a number of issues, including traffic.

TARA’s Plumb Park liaison Terence Ford said: “A number of questions were asked about the anticipated highly-dangerous situation at Littleham junction and the shopping parade, where parking is already at a premium and risky.

“A number of accidents have already occurred this year, and complete chaos can be anticipated with an additional 350-plus cars using the area everyday.

“CDE has previously claimed that it has fast-tracked and upgraded the traffic system here. This was met with derision by the audience.”

Responding after the meeting, CDE said it was factually incorrect to say it had claimed to upgrade the traffic system.

It said in 2012 it commissioned a Littleham Traffic Project which identified a number of key issues with the roads in the Littleham area, and consultants Buro Happold were asked to find potential solutions.

However, the Devon County Council Highways consultant tasked with reviewing traffic at the time of the Plumb Park planning application in 2013 found that there would not be enough extra traffic to trigger compulsory highways improvements.

CDE says as a result there has been no allocation of Section 106 funding for any road improvements, and adds that under planning law, it is not permitted to propose an upgrade to the road junction as part of the planning application.

However, John Varley said: “If, with any new applications for development it is demonstrated that there is an adverse impact on Littleham Cross, we would propose to return to the Littleham Traffic Project to seek solutions.”

Residents at the TARA meeting also questioned the single road access to the site via Buckingham Close.

Mr Ford said: “This has always been of serious concern to councillors and council environment health officers.”

In response, Andrew Tildesley from Taylor Wimpey said a number of steps had been taken to ensure disruption to residents was minimised during construction.

He said: “The construction access via Buckingham Close is the number one issue for Taylor Wimpey and my team are already focusing on the ways in which we can minimise disruption to residents in Buckingham Close as we gain access to the site.”

The consultation is ongoing online at www.plumbpark.co.uk

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