Pickles blocks Salford homes scheme over environmental damage
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has supported Salford City Council and blocked controversial outline plans to build 600 homes and a canal-side marina on open land at Broadoak between Monton and Worsley in Salford.
Developers Peel Group and Taylor Wimpey UK wanted to build the residential-led mixed-use scheme at a greenfield location, a mixture of woods, meadows and open land safeguarded by so-called Greenway policies in the City’s Unitary Development Plan.
There were also proposals for a new marina on the Bridgewater Canal, shops and cafes, new green space provision and new footpaths and the creation of an ecological mitigation area
The inspector who held the recovered appeal recommended against the scheme. Pickles’ decision letter made it clear the Secretary of State shared the inspector’s concern that “the appeal proposal’s complete obliteration of a section of the Greenway and its consequent fragmentation and loss of continuity is a high price to pay for making a very small contribution towards meeting the [acknowledged] housing shortfall”.
Pickles also agreed that it the scheme went ahead “there would be fundamental harm to the Greenway’s openness and to its value as an amenity, recreation and wildlife corridor”.
The Secretary of State concluded that the proposals breached both local and national planning policies.
“The adverse impacts of this proposal would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits when assessed against the policies in the National Planning Policy Framework taken as a whole”.
Pickles also stressed there were no considerations of sufficient weight to indicate the scheme should be “determined other than in accordance with the development plan”.