Monday, 21 May 2012

IKEA planning application latest

My request for the IKEA planning application to be "called in" to be decided by the Secretary of State has been rejected. Therefore, provided that IKEA sign the Section 106 legal agreement by August, their planning permission will be granted.

A statement on this planning application in Theale's Future's newsletter is rather misleading. If the IKEA application does not go ahead and another company submits a planning application for the site, then they will have to fund any highways improvements that their application requires. These may be more (unlikely) or less than those required from IKEA. What was said at the planning committee meeting was that road improvements would be required to cope with rising traffic in any case and that the council would be unable to afford them without the contribution from IKEA.

In the meantime, there are rumours that the developers who put in the (refused) application to build 750 homes on Pincents Hill may put in another planning application. It is difficult to see how the road system could be improved to cope with the traffic from both that and IKEA.

Alan Macro
Councillor for Theale
West Berkshire Council

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2 comments:

  1. Hi Alan.

    Thanks for the update.

    I must comment that there is a slight mis-alignment of understanding between your second paragraph above and the article in the Theale Newsletter, relating to the theoretical scenario of Ikea not being successful with their application.

    At that meeting on 4th April, one of the committee members stated that another party could purchase the currently derelict site next to Porche WITHOUT requiring planning permission, and therefore would not have to consider the impact they had on traffic. He also said that given that, "We should be careful what we wish for".

    It was this comment that was reported in the Newsletter.

    I have every confidence that you are correct that any subsequent application would need to fund any highways changes their application requires, but this not what was said at the meeting on 4th April, and the newsletter reports what was said.

    Regards,

    Jim

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    1. I think that I understand the comment now. Any company using the derelict retail warehouses for a similar use would not require planning permission (because the use class was unchanged) and would therefore not have to contribute anything for highways improvements. If, however, they wanted to change the use of the buildings, or replace them, and that new use would increase the amount of traffic generated beyond that from the previous use (Texas DIY, etc.,) then they would have to contribute towards road improvements.

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