Road safety fears for pupils on Portland

Road safety fears for pupils on Portland

Published by Maria Greenwood at 8:27am 11th June 2019.

It's over plans for new housing.

The safety of school pupils catching buses could be compromised by a plan for five terrace and semi-detached homes north of Cheyne Close, Portland.

The homes, all of two bedrooms, are being proposed by local company, Betterment Properties.

Comments on the application claims that the proposed homes will increase the risk to children using a bus stop opposite the site and would be an over development in the area.

The views are backed by Portland Town Council and the safety grounds partially supported by a highways officer.

Cheyne Close 2

Residents who have objected say the scheme will change the nature of the area which they say is already at risk from new developments.

“The green land which is planned to be built upon is very small and used for local residents to walk on and children to play, there is very little green space left in the area of Southwell due to the increase in housing which has already taken place over the past 10 years,” said Mrs Christine Kerr in a letter to the Dorset Council planning team.

“The junction by the bus stop adjacent to Cheyne Close and opposite the proposed site is the main crossing and bus stop used by all of the local pupils that attend the School Academy at Southwell Business Park. If these 5 houses go ahead there is a huge concern from residents in Cheyne Close for the safety of the children crossing to the bus stop, not to mention the increase in traffic the new houses will bring to the small area. The junction is already very busy and considered unsafe by current residents, especially at school start and finish times.

There are restricted views when driving in and out of the Close already, especially when a bus is parked, which is every 10 minutes, all of which will be worsened if the proposed houses are erected.”

Another objector, Mrs Stephanie Rowland-Pilgrim, says the homes would change the character of the area: “Southwell is a village interlaced with green spaces between groups of housing. These areas are played on by local children, used by walkers and horses. Visually these areas of green space enhance the area and this development of awkward, prominent houses which would be elevated above neighbouring properties, would harm the area as well as removing a prominent green space contrary to environmental policies.”

She says the area already has proposals for 58 houses on the former Southwell Primary school behind Cheyne Close, and seven houses in two sites on Reap Lane, and a further two at Branscombe Close as well as the 10 houses recently built on Avalanche Road.

“The addition of this development will put too much pressure on an area that is becoming over developed. Cars are frequently parked bumper to bumper down Reap Lane, Rip Croft and neighbouring roads from residents, visitors, care workers as well as bird watchers, walkers and climbers who are vital to Portlands local economy.”

Cheyne Close - bus stop
Cheyne Close, bus stop

The highways authority shares some of the concerns about the site layout and suggests it ought to be changed, if planning consent was granted: “All parking spaces appear too short. The perpendicular ones need setting back further from road as they have no visibility when entering the highway and will be constrained by any cars parked less than 6m away on the opposite side of the road… The layby requires that vehicles have to drive along the footway which is unacceptable.”

Public comments on the application remain open until June 15th.

It is expected that the application will be decided by a planning officer.

By Trevor Bevins, Local Democracy Reporter

The Wessex FM Newsletter


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