Friday 30 August 2019
A Development Framework has been approved by the Development & Planning Authority (D&PA), for a potential residential development at Bouverie Lane, Cobo in the parish of Castel.
Whilst the principle of residential development in this area was established through the Island Development Plan, the purpose of the Development Framework is to provide planning guidance on how this particular site might be developed. It sets out how the policies in the Island Development Plan will be applied, identifying the key parameters which would direct the form a development might take. The details of any development, including the site layout, site access and the number, type and form of any buildings proposed, would be included in the formal application for planning permission. Any such application would be expected to be in accordance with the guidance set out in the Framework, and would be advertised for public consultation in the normal manner, both in the Guernsey Press and by Site Notice.
The preparation and publication of a draft Development Framework provides the public with an additional opportunity to comment on the potential development of the site. The consultation period for the draft Framework enables comments to be made early in the process, primarily in relation to constraints and opportunities in respect of the site. A further opportunity to comment is then available once a formal application is submitted, enabling comment to be made on the details of any proposal.
In this case, the draft Development Framework was the subject of a six week public consultation which closed on 26 June 2019 and 23 responses were received from the public, in addition to a number of comments from relevant States Committees and other agencies. The issues raised in the responses related primarily to vehicular access to the site, retention of the Bouverie Lane public footpath, and sensitive boundaries with neighbouring properties. Concerns were also expressed regarding the likely impact on the character of the area resulting from a multi-storey development
All responses received have been reviewed and the approved Development Framework addresses the various concerns.
In respect of the site access, the draft Framework has been amended to clearly identify that all vehicle access would be from the Route de Cobo, with no vehicular link to Rue du Bouverie. The Development Guidelines however identify that improvements would be required to the site access to meet road safety standards.
The Bouverie Lane pedestrian path falls outside of the site area included within this Framework. The path would therefore have to be retained as part of any proposals for development. It is however identified within the Framework that consideration would need to be given to separating pedestrian and vehicular traffic at the site entrance to ensure a safe pedestrian environment is maintained.
The identified sensitive boundaries with adjoining residential properties have been extended following comment from the public.
A number of responses referred to the requirement for multi-storey development on the site. A key tenet of the Island Development Plan is that a development make the most efficient and effective use of land and the Plan identifies that a building of two or more storeys would require a smaller footprint than a single storey building providing the same level of accommodation, and would therefore comprise a more efficient use of land. Policy therefore promotes the use of multi-storey buildings. Multi-storey buildings however simply means more than one storey.
As identified within the Framework, the area surrounding the site is characterised by a mix of building forms and, whilst there are a number of one and a half storey cottages (with accommodation in the roof space), there are also a number of two storey or higher buildings, including a two storey house bounding the site to the north-west, constructed in the mid 20th century, and a two and a half storey house at the site access, which was constructed prior to 1900 and the highest residential building in the Cobo area. This mix of residential properties, the Cobo Mission Hall on the opposite side of Route de Cobo and the backdrop of the Rockmount Inn and Cobo Bay Hotel, provides a context of higher development against which any new development is viewed. A development of more than one storey would therefore be consistent with the character of the area. Although promoting multi-storey development, the Development Guidelines set out within the Framework specifically state that the scale of development should be appropriate to the character of the area and consideration must be given to the impact in long views from the surrounding area.
The Planning Service would like to thank all respondents for their interest and engagement in the preparation of this Development Framework. The approved Development Framework and the Committee Report on the responses received can be accessed via the States of Guernsey website at https://www.gov.gg/developmentframeworks or copies are available to view at the Planning Service Reception at Sir Charles Frossard House, La Charroterie, St Peter Port.