A common site in the USA; and now Whitchurch might get its first gated community.

The developer that knocked down the Railway pub and turned it into a temporary car park has submitted a planning application to B&DBC to turn the site into Whitchurch’s first electronic gated residential development.

Lochailort Investments Ltd, the developer, said in its ‘Design & Access Statement’ that, “a 5-bar electric gate is proposed across the vehicular entrance in order to provide a safe and secure environment for residents.”

The access to the site from Station Approach, facing the train station, will also be blocked to cars if the plans are accepted. However, the developer will give pedestrian access there to the Station.

Each of the proposed houses will occupy a space of between 40 and 50 square meters, and have two floors each.

ESSENTIAL SERVICE

The plans also state that they have about 25 vehicles per day using the temporary car park, which currently charges £2.50/day. Confusingly, they state that the car park “is an essential service for the community” and also argue in their submitted plans that it should not be considered as such in order to approve the housing.

They state that B&DBC should persue the development of a car park to the north of the station as a long-term solution.

TWO SHEDS

The plans state there is to be cycle storage, which was a requirement on the developer to provide when approval was given for the temporary car park. B&DBC are currently undertaking enforcement action against the developer for not yet providing cycle storage, in breach of planning law. The proposal shows two sheds.

The temporary car park is to be discontinued by 30th July 2013, unless B&DBC approve a change of use.

NO INTEREST AS A PUB

The developer says that B&DBC should not be constrained by their policy C8 protecting essential community services as the Railway pub “had not been trading well and had been marketed with no interest as a pub”.

Their planning application lists other pubs in town providing community service – including the shut Harvest Home pub on Winchester Street.

Investigations are underway to determine who has bought the Harvest Home pub, where a very high wooden fence was recently erected.

All the documents are found in the planning application: BDB/74244.

You can tell the B&DBC planning officers what you think of this application: Feedback on BDB/74244.