OPPONENTS to the controversial Godley Green Garden Village development are likely to be told their concerns can be resolved.
The Tameside Council-proposed development, which will see 2,150 homes built on green belt land either side of the A560 Mottram Old Road, will go before the authority’s Speaker’s Panel (Planning) committee on Wednesday, November 1.
A decision to approve it, on the proviso it is referred to the secretary of state for housing, is most likely, even though 4,205 letters of objection and a petition of 4,459 signatures against it have been lodged.
However, documents state proposed modifications are likely to ease inspectors’ concerns.
They say: “Objections remain in place to the plan. However, the direction of travel expressed by the inspectors is clear. Although this is set out is an interim view, it is a strong indication in relation to the objections made that they can be resolved.
“The inspectors are satisfied at this stage of the examination that the list of proposed main modifications are necessary to make the plan sound and/or legally compliant, and would be effective.
“The inspectors have therefore indicated their position on the proposed policy content of the plan as modified, including the proposed allocations and revised Green Belt boundary. This, as set out within their note, is without prejudice to their final conclusions, reached after consideration of responses to the public consultation to be carried out on the main modifications.”
As well as homes, shops, a medical centre, sport and fitness facilities, restaurants and cafes and pubs will also be built in what will be split as east and west villages, with 15 per cent of housing classed as affordable.
Supporting education provision in the area will also be a key consideration, including land to assist with the expansion of Alder Community High School and financial contributions towards primary, secondary and special education needs.
If it is built, Godley Stud Farm and Far Meadow Farm will be demolished, along with stable buildings of Brookfold Farm and agricultural buildings of Greenside Farm.
Hundreds of reasons for objection are listed in the documents surrounding Godley Green Garden Village, which will be built over a 15-year period if approved.
And a number of bodies have also stated their worries, although National Highways has indicated it would not have a severe impact.
A traffic report also claims: “Whilst there is an increase on some arms, the areas of most concern see a reduction in traffic using updated distribution.
“The findings of the report do suggest that there may be longer queues on the A560 arm of M67 J4 in the morning peak.”
However, it adds: “It also seems that, despite the overall reduction in traffic, the new distribution shows that more vehicles are likely to head straight on to Manchester Road rather than southbound from the M67, which may lead to a slight increase in queueing on the M67 behind the traffic signals.”
National Highways also believes conditions should be in place relating to things including the provision of a dedicated travel plan co-ordinator, the southern connection to Hattersley station being implemented at the earliest opportunity and electronic charging points being provided in housing and district centres.
United Utilities, which has no objection to proposed drainage solutions, state: “The submission still lacks full detail on a clear strategy for delivery.
“Although the submission is in outline, the applicant has yet to fully establish the principle of site delivery which does not meet the requirements of the draft site-specific policy in the Places for Everyone document.”
It has also been found the site supports great crested newts, badgers, bats, barn owls and nesting birds. However, Natural England say it, ‘will not have a significant adverse impact on statutorily protected nature conservation sites.’
The Woodland Trust objects on the basis of indirect impact to ancient woodland in Brookfold Wood and says a buffer 100-metre buffer zone should be included.
And the area’s NHS Primary Care body states: “If the planning application is supported additional healthcare estate will be needed.
“The current estate is already challenged and therefore this additional geographic development will compound that.
“The Godley Green development would need to include a community health and wellbeing hub within one of the Village Hubs.”
To counter the thousands of objections, 33 letters of support have also been submitted, with points including it, ‘will open up the area for more footpaths and bike paths as at the moment it is all just private land,’ and, ‘It will bring new jobs into the area and will be a lovely place to live right next to Werneth Low Country Park.’
Tameside Council also states it, ‘would have a positive economic impact.’
“A construction period of 15 years would result in the equivalent of £25 million gross value added and 550 jobs per annum,” it adds.
“Once the development is complete, the economic benefits would come from a combination of the direct and indirect impact of new residents spending income locally and the provision of commercial floor space within the site.
“The council would receive £4 million per annum in New Homes Bonus for the first six years.”