Venue: Council Chamber, Arun Civic Centre, Maltravers Road, Littlehampton, BN17 5LF. View directions
Contact: Andrew Bishop & Carley Lavender
Note: The Committee has decided that it would like to invite public representations to this Special meeting. This will be subject to the normal public speaking rules of no more than two objectors and two supporters and spaces will be allocated on a first come first served basis. Those wishing to speak at the meeting should contact Sue Bowley on 01903 737533 by no later than Midday on Monday, 17 May 2021. Participation in these meetings will either be through attending virtually via Zoom or a written submission that will be read out at the meeting depending upon your preference. Your written statement must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org and marked 'written submission for Development Control Committee 18 May 2021' by no later than 5.00 pm on the day before the meeting.
Declarations of interest
Members and Officers are reminded to make any declarations of pecuniary, personal and/or prejudicial interests that they may have in relation to items on this agenda and are reminded that they should re-declare their interest before consideration of the item or as soon as the interest becomes apparent.
Members and officer should make their declaration by stating :
a) the application they have the interest in
b) whether it is a pecuniary, personal and/or prejudicial
c) the nature of the interest
d) if it is a prejudicial or pecuniary interest, whether they will be exercising their right to speak to the application
No declarations of interest were made.
To approve as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting held on 28 April 2021.
The Minutes of the meeting held on 28 April 2021 were approved by the Committee.
The acoustic fence was granted permission under permission LU/234/16/RES at Arun’s Development Control Committee on 17 October 2017. This report invites the Committee to consider whether they wish to investigate options around amending/withdrawing the permissions granted and commission an independent report to undertake a review of previous decisions and to provide advice on possible actions available to the Council.
5 Public Speakers
Cllr Jill Long, Littlehampton Town Council
Cllr Britton, West Sussex County Council
The Group Head of Planning presented his report. This was followed by five Public Speakers and response to comments made was provided by the Group Head of Planning.
Members then took part in a full debate on the report where a number of concerns with the acoustic fencing were raised. These concerns primarily revolved around height, traffic speed on the new road, materials and proximity to housing.
Members who spoke noted that the fencing was high and some noted that it could have a claustrophobic effect on residents, but that there was not currently enough information to determine if the fencing was too high. There was a perception amongst Members who spoke that the height of the fencing was strongly determined by the speed of the road and the subsequent noise generated, and therefore if the speed limit could be reduced to 30mph from 40mph then the fencing height could also be reduced.
It was explained that West Sussex County Council, with responsibility for Highways and having previously determined the speed of the new road, would have to agree to a reduction in the speed limit. The Group Head of Planning also confirmed that there was no technical evidence that demonstrated that a lower speed limit would result in the need for a significantly lower structure. Members were asked to note changes to Government policy on carbon neutrality and the future impact of more electric vehicles on the road but appreciated in the short and medium term that the road may be used by large vehicles including HGVs. The Cabinet Member for Planning noted that there was not a direct correlation between height and speed limit due to the complexities of sound mitigation and therefore seeking a lowering to the speed limit might not be the right direction to take as it would not necessarily translate into a lower fence.
Members who spoke raised concerns around the look of the weathered steel both for residents and road users and how in keeping with other road barriers in the District it was. Members who spoke suggested that options around alternative materials that were more sympathetic to residents and the area should be explored including transparent ones and the use or greater use of natural barriers such as trees and shrubs.
The proximity of fencing of that height to the houses on Highdown Drive and Amberley Close was also raised as a concern and whether an option of moving the fence further away from the houses could lessen the impact of both the height and look for residents.
Members who spoke acknowledged that this was a complex issue with a long history but affirmed that they wanted to see a fair outcome for residents and road users, and that in order to achieve that end needed more information on possible ways forward. Given the consensus during the discussion, the Chair ... view the full minutes text for item 577.