Cycle incentives appeal to inspector
Opportunities to contribute to the sustainability of a development may vary from urban to rural areas. Sustainability can also mean different things within different local plans. Development in rural areas can often be a means through which the viability of local services and amenities can be sustained and strengthened. In the following appeal, a package of measures to encourage cycling to nearby amenities and commuting by rail contributed to a positive outcome.
Property developer Woolbro Group wanted to redevelop a tennis centre in South Nutfield, Surrey, and transform the site into 23 apartments. Due to concerns about the site’s location in relation to Nutfield village centre, the original application was turned down. The challenges for Motion centred on sustainability, access and visibility.
Woolbro Group’s Planning Manager, Jonathan Greenberg, takes up the story. “Motion has a track record of getting results and the team was involved throughout the planning stages and appeal process. With their support, we were able to demonstrate the proximity of the proposed development to local amenities, particularly when travelling by bicycle.”
To encourage residents of the development to adopt sustainable travel modes, each household will be provided with £300 in vouchers which they can put towards the cost of purchasing new bicycles or bus or rail tickets. Residents will also be incentivised to make use of Nutfield railway station, even if the initial part of their journey is by car. Wider infrastructure improvements to the station include upgraded cycle parking facilities, new signage and better access.
Motion Technical Director, David McMurtary, adds, “Despite the lack of footways to local amenities, the inspector was persuaded by the proposed mitigation measures, which help to support cycling. Moreover, the development will result in a reduction of traffic flows on the adjacent Crab Hill Lane compared to previous uses.”
An abridged version of this article first appeared in the Summer 2021 edition of Insight.