Agenda item

21068/041 - Alton Sports Centre, Chawton Park Road, Alton, GU34 1ST

Sports and Leisure Management Limited

 

Approval of reserved matters pursuant to outline permission 21068/040 - Replacement sports centre (Use Class D2) up to 8,500 sqm gross external floor area together with parking structure and other car parking (up to 250 spaces); Construction of outdoor floodlit, fenced synthetic turf pitches; vehicular, pedestrian and cycle routes; landscaping, including tree planting and sustainable urban drainage. Earthworks, implementation of appropriate remediation works and felling of trees following demolition of the existing sports centre building; removal of the existing synthetic sports pitches, floodlighting and fencing. (Access, Appearance, Landscaping, Layout, and Scale to be considered) [Supplementary information and amended plans received 11/12/2017, 21/12/2017, 8/1/2018 and 1/2/2018]

Minutes:

Approval of reserved matters pursuant to outline permission 21068/040 - Replacement sports centre (Use Class D2) up to 8,500 sqm gross external floor area together with parking structure and other car parking (up to 250 spaces); Construction of outdoor floodlit, fenced synthetic turf pitches; vehicular, pedestrian and cycle routes; landscaping, including tree planting and sustainable urban drainage.  Earthworks, implementation of appropriate remediation works and felling of trees following demolition of the existing sports centre building; removal of the existing synthetic sports pitches, floodlighting and fencing. (Access, Appearance, Landscaping, Layout, and Scale to be considered) [Supplementary information and amended plans received 11/12/2017, 21/12/2017 and 8/1/2018]

 

The Development Management Team Leader introduced the application and referred to the Supplementary Matters where there had been a further update from Sport England, the Sports Development Officer and Hants FA.  However, no changes were proposed to the officer recommendation.

 

He advised the committee that the internal layout and mix of D2 uses was not a material planning consideration.

 

A location plan of the site was displayed, along with an illustrative masterplan, the existing site plan, proposed site plan, and proposed elevations.

 

The principle of development had been established through the granting of the outline permission.  This reserved matters application considered matters relating to: access, appearance, landscaping, layout and scale. 

 

The new sports centre would be constructed whilst keeping the existing facility open.  Access and egress to the site would remain via Chawton Park Lane.

 

It would be sited closer to Alton Cardiac Rehab centre and aligned corner to corner with a shared courtyard parking area.  A new area of car parking was proposed on the footprint of the existing centre as well as revisions to the current car park.  Highways had raised no objections to the proposed increase in parking from 146 to 232 spaces.

 

In terms of landscaping, a detailed plan was to be agreed by the Landscape Officer and Arboricultural Officer.  A landscape buffer would remain in place to retain the separation from a terrace of properties in Gurdons.

 

The proposed building would be viewed as a series of blocks.  The use of these smaller blocks would break up the scale and massing of the building which overall, was of a good standard of design.

 

The recommendation was for approval of reserved matters.

 

The committee was addressed by the following deputees:

 

(1)         Mrs Golding spoke on behalf of objectors to the application.

 

As set out in appendix 1 attached to these minutes.    

  

(2)          Cllr Hicks spoke on behalf of Alton Town Council.

 

As set out in appendix 2 attached to these minutes.

 

(3)          Mr Love spoke as the agent for the application.

 

As set out in appendix 3 attached to these minutes.

 

(4)          Cllr Graham Hill spoke as the local ward councillor.

 

As set out in appendix 4 attached to these minutes.

 

The committee discussed the application and referred to the outline application approved in 2015 which in the officer report to committee stated that full details of the facilities to be provided would be set out in the Reserved Matters application, following consultation with interested parties.   The level of consultation undertaken was also questioned, as Members considered that there was evidence to show that key groups had not been consulted.

 

Officers confirmed that significant consultation had taken place since 2011 and specifically, user groups had been consulted in 2013.  Officers highlighted that the facility mix at the present sports centre could be changed at any time without the need for planning permission and that the mix of facilities agreed as part of the contract was separate to this reserved matters planning application, and for the Council to consider separately in its role as leisure services provider.

 

In response to a request from the committee, the meeting was adjourned to allow officers to provide the consultation documentation that had been published on the council's website.

 

The meeting adjourned at 7.38pm.

 

The meeting reconvened at 7.56pm.

 

Having read the consultation document, the committee stated that it comprised of a list of consultation that had taken place, rather than the details of the consultation and therefore gave the document very little weight.

 

In response to questions, officers confirmed that they felt that the application met all of the policies contained within the Development Plan and reiterated that full consultation had taken place.  The proposed condition requested by Sport England was unenforceable as it did not satisfy the tests for conditions set out in the NPPF.

 

The committee had not seen suitable evidence to demonstrate that adequate consultation had taken place and therefore felt unable to determine the application.

 

Cllr Phillips proposed that the application be deferred to allow the applicant to demonstrate that full consultation had taken place.

 

The meeting adjourned at 8.40pm in order to allow Cllr Phillips to finalise the wording for his deferral.

 

The meeting reconvened at 8.46pm.

 

Cllr Phillips proposed that the application be deferred in order for the applicant to demonstrate quantifiable evidence of how it has engaged the relevant stakeholders in mitigating Policies CP16 and CP17 of the Joint Core Strategy and Policy CH2 of the Alton Neighbourhood Plan, within the 15 minute drive time of the new facility.

 

This proposal was seconded by Cllr Joy.

 

The committee voted on Cllr Phillips’ proposal for deferral.

 

Following the vote, the proposal was declared CARRIED, 7 Councillors voting FOR deferral, 2 Councillors voting AGAINST deferral and 1 Councillor ABSTAINING from voting.

 

The committee adjourned at 8.55pm.

 

The committee reconvened at 9.00pm.

 

Cllr Mocatta left the meeting.

 

Cllrs Glass and Thomas returned to the room.

Supporting documents: