Planning and Development

Homeplus site application

A planning application has been submitted for the site of the Homeplus Store at the junction of Beaver Road and Avenue Jacques Faucheux. The application follows a consultation event at the Stour Centre in May.

The proposal for 214 apartments, 9 townhouses, 3 commercial units plus a rooftop restaurant have been submitted by A Better Choice for Property Development Ltd, Ashford Borough Council’s property investment vehicle.

The application, case reference 19/01597/AS, can be examined on the Ashford Borough Council planning website: https://planning.ashford.gov.uk/Planning/details.aspx?systemkey=113996

J10A East facing sliproad opening

Click to enlarge

You may have heard recently that there have been some changes to our plan for opening the new junction 10a we are building on the M20 near Ashford, and I wanted to write to you to tell you what our plans are and what they mean for you.

The main thing that has changed is that we are fast-tracking work to have the new east facingslip roads at the new junction and the new A2070 link road open in time for 31 October. This will mean that drivers will be able to use the new coastbound entry and London-bound exit slip roads, and the new A2070 link road from this Thursday 31 October 2019.

Drivers will be able to access the M20 travelling eastbound using the new A2070 link road and M20 J10a. Drivers travelling westbound will also be able to exit the M20 at the new junction 10a and travel towards Ashford using the A2070 link road. Having these new links available for traffic is significant good news that will benefit thousands of drivers every day and improve access to and from Ashford. We accelerated this work to help
lorries move smoothly to and from Ashford Truck stop when the UK was expecting to leave the European Union on 31 October.

Opening these new links will also allow us to move on to the next stage of finishing the improvements. From early November the coast-bound slip road onto the M20 at junction 10 and the London-bound exit slip road will be permanently closed, allowing us to complete construction on the new west facing slip roads at junction 10a.

The A20 will remain on its current temporary alignment for the time being and will be connected to the new junction 10a in phases. The A20 will be connected to the east side of junction 10a on Monday night 4 November and will be open in both directions. Drivers will be able to exit at the new junction 10a and travel towards Sellindge, and will also be able to travel from Sellindge and access junction 10a. The A20 will be connected to the west side of junction 10a, via a oneway system. During this period, there will be no access to the A20 from junction 10a traveling towards junction 10. Drivers seeking to travel to junction 10 from junction 10a, will be directed to use the A2070 link road instead. This temporary road layout is shown in the diagram above.

The final changes should be complete – and the new junction fully open to traffic – in spring 2020.

I hope you agree that this is an exciting time for Ashford, as we take the final steps to open this major road improvement to traffic. We hope this information is helpful and we apologise in advance for any inconvenience this work may cause.

If you have any questions please contact us by visiting our scheme webpage at www.highwaysengland.co.uk/M20J10a.

M20 junction 10a Project Manager




Powergen plots to be sold

Layout of plots
Layout of Plots on Powergen site. Plots to be sold are those to East of Gasworks Lane

An application to Ashford Borough Council requesting the Council confirms that access works undertaken to Plots 1 and 2 of the Powergen site were undertaken lawfully to implement a start of the approved development of the site. The application has been submitted to confirm that the planning approval has not expired hence allowing the site to be sold with planning permission.

The application has been made Gerald Eve LLP on behalf of Victoria Road Developments Limited, which is in receivership.

ABC approved planning application 15/01671/AS giving detailed permission for 400 apartments on plots 1 and 2 and outline permission for 260 apartments and houses on plots 3,4 and 5 in November 2016. A condition attached to a later approval, 17/00018/AS, required the development of Plots 1 and 2 to be commenced within two years of the approval. The apartments were to be built to rent by Neighbour, a private rental company originating in Scandinavia.

The directors changed the name of the company owning the site, from Neighbour Ashford Limited to Victoria Road Developments, in 2018, perhaps indicating that they no longer wanted the Neighbour brand to be associated with the site. The company appointed receivers in August of this year at the behest of Lendinvest Security Trustees, who it is believed provided finance for the development.

Development of Plots 3,4 and 5 is being progressed by Quinn Estates for GRE Assets, a property company with headquarters in Oxford.

East Stour Park amendments

Amended drawings submitted to Ashford Borough Council on Wednesday of this week, indicate a reduction of one storey from the three highest blocks resulting in a removal of 24 apartments from the proposal.

The drawings also appear to indicate a reduction of the ground level in some areas. The number of parking spaces has been increased to address issues raised by Kent Cunty Council Highways

South Ashford Community Forum will undertake a further review of these drawings to gain a full understanding of the changes.

ABC Planning Case ref: 19/00709/AS
https://planning.ashford.gov.uk/planning/Details.aspx?systemkey=112528

Response to East Stour Park development

Satellite image of site

South Ashford Community forum has drafted its response to the planning application for the proposed East Stour Park Development.

We are aware that a petition has been started against the development. Petitions cannot be presented at meetings of the Planning Committee so will have no effect on the decision. All who wish to object to this development should submit their comment using the process set out on the Ashford Borough Council website: https://www.ashford.gov.uk/planning-and-building-control/making-planning-applications/comment-on-applications/

South Ashford Community Forum will include the issues listed below in its comment. You may include these issues in your own comment but need to formulate them into suitable paragraphs.

  • Site is in Green Corridor
  • Development would add further severe restriction to the Green Corridor and movement of wildlife in an area adjacent to which such movement is already constrained by the station, railway and roads round it.
  • The proposed ‘enhancement’of the Green Corridor does not adequately mitigate the loss of Green Corridor.
  • The exit of traffic onto Norman Road so close to the Kimberley Way Roundabout will create a hazard
  • Site is not allocated in local plan; development not required to meet 5y  housing need.
  • Developments of the proposed size on greenfield sites should go through the SHEELAA selection process and not be considered as windfall sites.
  • The sequential test does not include the Homeplus site.
  • The claim that properties in Riversdale Road would flood before the site is incorrect as experienced in 2014.
  • There is no mention in the current Green Corridor Action Plan of a Wetland Country Park in the South Willesborough Dykes.
  • Development of the South Willesborough Dykes, or part of it, as a country park would have a severe negative impact.

Ashford Bourough Council Case Reference: 19/00709/AS
http://planning.ashford.gov.uk/Planning/details.aspx?systemkey=112528

Homeplus site exhibition

A Better Choice for Property Ltd., the property investment company owned by Ashford Borough Council, has announced an exhibition of proposals for development of the site of the Homeplus home furnishings store in Beaver Road.

The site was purchased by A Better Choice fot Property earlier this year from Southern Housing Group. Although Southern Housing had commissioned outline designs for development of the site, no planning
application for the proposals had been published.

Thursday 16th May 2019
3pm – 8pm
The Stour Centre, Station Approach, Ashford, Kent, TN23 1ET

A Better Choice for Property Development Ltd invites you To attend a public exhibition event in relation to a proposed high quality mixed use (residential and commercial) development on the former B&Q (now Home Plus) site in Beaver Road.

The public exhibilion provides an informal opportunity for the local community to learn more about this development and to provide feedback to the team.

A model of the initial scheme for the site will be on display and representatives from A Better Choice for Property Development Ltd as well as members of the project team will be on hand to answer any questions you may have.

Email: info@dhaplanning.co.uk

Poplars planning application

Ashford Borough Council (ABC) have submitted a planning application to demolish 14 flats and 3 houses at the Poplars at the junction of Beaver Lane and Beaver Road and replace them with 31 apartments for independent living older tenants.

The proposed development follows the rebuilding of Farrow Court, nearby, Danemoor in Tenterden and the proposed rebuild of East Stour Court in Mabledon Avenue as part of an ABC strategy to modernise and increase their sheltered housing stock.

The new apartments will be for affordable rent to tenants aged 50 or above.

The ABC Planning case reference is 19/00516/AS
https://planning.ashford.gov.uk/Planning/details.aspx?systemkey=112217

Appeal against refusal for motorcycle workshop

The applicant has appealed a decision by Ashford Borough Council to refuse an application to change an industrial unit in Eastmead to a motorcycle workshop.

Alexander Motorcycles currently located on Ellingham Industrial Estate applied, in December 2017, to change the use of Airtech House in Eastmead Avenue from industrial/commercial use to a motorcycle workshop. Ashford Borough Council refused the application in, August 2018, because “The proposed change of use would give rise to an unacceptable level of noise and disturbance to residents within the locality which cannot be adequately mitigated. As a result, the residential amenity of the occupiers of dwellings in the locality would be significantly harmed to their detriment. “

Alexander Cadenhead, a director of Alexander Motorcycles, submitted an appeal against the decision on 3rd February of this year.

Ashford Borough Council planning case ref: 17/01873/AS
Planning Inspectorate case ref: APP/E2205/W/19/3221781

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