Planning round-up: March 2013

March 14, 2013 No Comments »

It was another busy month at Cardiff Council’s planning committee yesterday, although decisions on major applications including a new Sainsbury’s in Rhiwbina and 48 houses on open space in Danescourt were both deferred.

Details of all the decisions made by the committee can be found below, or on our round-up map.

54 Metal Street, Adamsdown

This application for outline planning permission to build a new residential development on vacant land at 54 Metal Street was deferred for a site visit at the request of ward councillor Nigel Howells. The Imam Ali Foundation wants to build 11, one-bedroom flats, and three two-bedroom flats on the site, but Coun Howells said he would like committee members to see the area for themselves to understand residents’ concerns about parking, congestion, and the fact that the development would overlook Adamsdown Primary School. The site visit will take place on April 3.

David Hall Motor Engineer, 1-3 Dalcross Street, Roath

The Mandi Masjid Trust has applied for planning permission to covert this commercial building into a Muslim community centre, including an activity room, classrooms, a kitchen, and prayer hall, but a decision was deferred for a site visit at the request of Plasnewydd ward member Councillor Mary McGarry. She said many residents were worried about the impact the new community centre would have on parking, with up to 200 people expected to use the centre on Fridays. This site visit will also be held on April 3.

Thornhill Garage, Heol Llanishen Fach, Rhiwbina

Developers PMG Ltd are seeking planning permission to change the use of Thornhill Garage on Heol Llanishen Fach into three shops – including a Sainsbury’s – with offices on the first floor. The plans have caused considerable concern in Rhiwbina already, with residents worried about the impact the new retail units would have on existing local shops, and increased traffic in the area. Committee member Coun Adrian Robson declared an interest at yesterday’s meeting and spoke in his capacity as a Rhiwbina ward member, saying there was “overwhelming opposition” to the proposals. He said: “There would be a noticeable impact on local shops, with trade drawn away from those fantastic shops. Traffic will dramatically increase from what we have on the site at present.” Coun Robson added that traffic trying to leave the site would have difficulty turning right because of existing congestion, and the whole area could be brought to a standstill as other cars try to get in. “I see it being chaos,” he said. Fellow Rhiwbina councillor Jayne Cowan said that the proposed closing times for the shops – 11pm Monday to Saturday, and 10pm on a Sunday – could increase the levels of anti-social behaviour in the area. Committee members voted to defer their decision so that officers could provide more information on the transport concerns.

Land at Radyr Court Road, Danescourt

This controversial application for outline planning permission to build 48 homes on land at Radyr Court Road has sparked strong opposition in Danescourt, and three residents spoke against the plans at yesterday’s meeting, as well as Llandaff ward councillor Kirsty Davies. Resident Simon Field pointed out that in 2007, the planning committee had rejected an application for five houses on the same site because of the harm it would do to the area’s character. Mr Field said officers were now recommending an application 13 times bigger than that for approval. He questioned the single track access road’s ability to cope with the large increase in traffic, and said that while officers had judged the land to have no intrinsic value, it was a “haven” for local residents. Helen Stuart also told the committee that the value of the land had been “massively understated”. But Liz Mellett, speaking on behalf of the applicants Nabatean Limited, said Cardiff needed more housing and pointed out there had been no objections from council departments such as highways and transport. She also said that the developer was offering £150,000 to put towards facilities at Danescourt Local Centre, road improvements, and education provision. 40% of the site would also be affordable housing. But committee members including Margaret Jones, Trish Burfoot, and Gareth Aubrey all raised concerns including the environmental impact of the development, the width of the access road, and loss of open space. And despite officers reminding the committee of the pressing need to build new housing in Cardiff – and the fact the council lost a recent appeal against its refusal of an application to build 80 new homes in St Fagans – Coun Garry Hunt said he could not “in all conscience support the recommendation of officers”. Committee members voted to defer the application so reasons for refusal can be drafted.

56A Plas Mawr Road, Fairwater

An application for permission to change the use of a former greengrocers at 56A Plas Mawr Road to a hot food takeaway was approved by the committee, despite a local resident and Fairwater ward member Lisa Ford voicing their opposition. Coun Ford said it was unclear exactly what type of takeaway would open at the address, and she was concerned about the effect fumes from the food outlet would have on neighbouring houses. She added that another take away could also lead to a possible increase in anti-social behaviour. But Coun Adrian Robson said there was already a trend for takeaways in that area, and he saw no reason to reject the proposal. Resident Ron Morgan, speaking in support of the application, said empty shops were bad for the area and that local PACT meetings had been told anti-social behaviour was falling. The committee voted to approve the application by seven votes to one.

77 Kimberley Road, Penylan

A decision on this application to open a baby nursery for up to 19 children on the ground floor of 77 Kimberley Road was deferred so that reasons for refusal could be drafted. Penylan ward member Coun Bill Kelloway told the committee that while there was a demand for child care facilities in the area, this was the wrong site because of the “dangerous junction” with Blenheim Road. He illustrated a string of collisions at the junction with photographs provided by residents, describing the scenes as “absolute carnage”. Committee member Gareth Aubrey said while officers had recommended the plans for approval, he thought reasons for refusal should be drafted on the basis that the junction configuration meant the site was not suitable for a baby nursery. Councillors will vote on the application again next month.

Clive Road Hall, corner of Clive Road and Daisy Street, Canton

Plans to demolish Clive Hall – a former church hall – at the corner of Clive Road and Daisy Street and build a new housing development in its place were approved by the committee. The developer plans to build four three-bedroom houses, three one-bedroom flats, and a bed sit. The existing church hall building is currently used for storage and is in a poor state of repair.

55 Flora Street, Cathays

An application to build a ground and first floor extension with a rear dormer at 55 Flora Street in Cathays was approved by the committee, with an instruction to the developer that the room specified as a dining room would be used as such, and not as a bedroom.

23-24 Park Place, Cathays Park

The Charnwood Group applied for planning permission and conservation area consent to demolish two Victorian villas at 23 and 24 Park Place, and build a block of student accommodation in its place made up of 11 apartments and a total of 62 bedrooms. Plans for a similar scheme, with 79 student bedrooms, were thrown out by the planning committee in September last year, and the committee also voted to refuse this application. Although 23 and 24 Park Place are both currently empty, they are both within the City Centre Principal Business Area, the Northern Professional Office Area, and the Cathays Park Conservation Area. Officers said that the development would not preserve or enhance the character of the conservation area, and when an artist’s impression of the development was shown to the meeting, it was met with gasps from the committee. Coun Gareth Aubrey described the design as “really, really bad”. The committee agreed that the loss of small scale office accommodation was also not acceptable.

4 Cathedral Road, Riverside

Lacegrove Ltd applied for planning permission to covert 4 Cathedral Road from offices into seven two-bedroom flats and one two-bed mews house. The plans were approved by the committee.

Radyr Weir, Radyr

Cardiff Council’s application for permission to build a hydropower scheme at Radyr Weir, with two screw turbines, an improved fish pass, fish counting facility, powerhouse, and the re-routing of a cycle and footpath, was approved with conditions. The electricity produced by the scheme will be exported to the National Grid.

33 Murrayfield Road, Birchgrove

Planning permission was granted to use 33 Murrayfield Road as a childminding business for a maximum of 12 children. It had previously been allowed to cater for up to six youngsters.

100 Wentloog Road, Rumney

The committee refused this application to retain two galvanised flues at the back of a fish and chip shop at 100 Wentloog Road.

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