Plan for Rumpoles redevelopment recommended for refusal

June 11, 2012 3 Comments »

The former Rumpoles pub on Moira Terrace

Controversial  proposals to knock down a former Brains pub and build an eight storey block of flats and shops will go before Cardiff councillors later this week.

Landlord CPS Homes wants to knock down the former Rumpoles pub on Moira Terrace in Adamsdown, and build a block of 36 flats and two commercial units in its place.

The plans are due to go before Cardiff Council’s planning committee on Wednesday, but council officers have recommended that committee members refuse the plans because the proposals are “unneighbourly” and represent an “overdevelopment” of the site.

CPS Homes was previously granted planning permission to build a five-storey development on the same site, but has revised its proposals, and now wants to build an eight storey block containing 25 one-bedroom flats, 11 two-bedroom flats and two commercial units on the ground floor.

However, the plans have been subject to opposition from Adamsdown ward member Nigel Howells, and former ward member John Dixon. Both argue the proposals are an overdevelopment, that there is no open space or off-street parking provided, and there would be a loss of privacy for residents in nearby Adams Court, Newtown Court, and for Cardiff Prison.

Speaking to yourCardiff earlier this year, Coun Howells described the proposed development as a “huge monstrosity”.

A petition containing the signatures of 200 local residents has also been passed to the council, raising particular concern about the lack of on-site parking, which they say will significantly reduce their quality of life.

One person has contacted the council supporting the application, saying the city needs more developments that are six-12 stories tall with retail on the ground floor.

The planning report committee members will consider on Wednesday says that although a nine-storey building is set to be built on the nearby site of Adam Street fire station, that site is significantly larger than the Rumpoles plot.

It also says that the development would overshadow a significant area of the Adams Court communal garden for up to nine months of the year, creating an “overbearing impact” and “unneighbourly form of development”.

The report concludes that although the proposals do not give rise to any concerns about land use or transportation, it is an “insensitive overdevelopment” out of scale and character with its immediate surroundings.

The report adds: “It dwarfs the neighbouring residential development and will have a detrimental impact on the residential amenity of the Adams Court development.”

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3 Comments

  1. John June 13, 2012 at 12:17 pm - Reply

    It is interesting to read about the objections to the re-development of Rumpoles; a brownfield site and arguably a very aesthetically pleasing existing building, where such a development would give a much needed revamp to a pivotal junction within the Cardiff Central Area.

    Building means investment, which is key to the creation of jobs and the local and national economy. It is jobs and production that will bring us out of recession. The local council should be considering the economy, lowering unemployment rates and following planning policy, rather than concerning themselves with overlooking inmates of Cardiff Prison or a communal area which is primarily made of up car parking, which were objections raised by local members.

    The latest Joint Housing Land Availability Study (JHLA) shows that “Similar to the position back in the early 1990’s just prior to the adoption of the local plan, Cardiff now finds itself with an apparent shortage of land for housebuilding as it awaits progress on its Local Development Plan.”

    With Wales Online reporting themselves that Councillors are faced with slashing the city’s housing waiting list – which has grown to 11,000 applicants – and with National Assembly inspectors ordering the council to find ways of providing housing land, this site would appear ideal for such a supply.

    Whilst the site doesn’t offer any parking, it is in a highly sustainable location and would actively support green methods of transportation. To support sustainable transport a secure cycle storage area would be provided within the development. Furthermore, it is inline with the council's own planning guidance, so objections on these grounds would seem somewhat misguided.

    The development would clearly contribute to the local community by job creation, investment into the city, providing housing and also through contributions of £49,590 to local park services and £21,096 to community facilities.

    The views of local residents are clearly important and should not be dismissed without prior consideration, but many of the buildings in the immediate vicinity do not contain full-time residents and consist of court buildings, Cardiff Prison and the new student halls, which itself recently gained planned permission after a previous refusal. With a shortage of housing and a lack of contributions from developers maintaining local services, it is questionable whether such a development genuinely brings any harm to the city, or in fact a desperately needed cash and housing injection?

    The Liberal Democrats vigorously opposed the Rumpoles re-development and campaigned their petition against the plans, yet despite actively canvassing and leaflet dropping, only managed to obtain two-hundred signatures. Following such an active campaign, this does not demonstrate a great deal of opposition to the scheme.

  2. Jim June 13, 2012 at 10:21 pm - Reply

    The problem is the city is run by nimby councillors who will make decisions based on a handful of objections rather than what is good for the city as a whole.

  3. Anon June 14, 2012 at 7:38 pm - Reply

    The proposed increase in the size of the development appears to be purely for greed with little consideration for local residents and with such a concise area of residential living behind the building the opinions of the 200 signatures should not be overlooked. Could it also be that such a detailed and knowledgeable response from 'John' may possibly be represented by the same John that is the deputy director of CPS Homes and has a somewhat biased opinion

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