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D’Urton Lane housing plan recommended for approval despite Guild Wheel cyclists protests

Posted on - 2nd December, 2015 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Broughton, Fulwood, Housing, News, Politics, Preston Council, Roads, Transport
Where the Guild Wheel leaves D'Urton Lane Pic: Keith Sergeant

Where the Guild Wheel leaves D’Urton Lane Pic: Keith Sergeant

A controversial housing development looks set to be approved despite a campaign by cyclists.

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Land near the Guild Wheel at D’Urton Lane is earmarked for 112 new homes.

Preston City Council planning officers have recommended the scheme be approved but with a number of strict conditions.

The site cannot be linked directly to the M55 and the developers must reach a Section 106 agreement – money which funds community improvements in the area – by Friday 18 December or permission could be withdrawn, if the plans are approved.

A previous scheme for 118 homes on the same site was refused by councillors in July this year.

Protest by cyclists

Nearly 10,000 people have signed a petition against development along the Guild Wheel route.

They say the D’Urton Lane housing would increase traffic along narrow roads and affect the route of the Guild Wheel, which is used by tens of thousands of cyclists each year.

The Guild Wheel Users Group has objected to the plans stating; “D’urton Lane has for many years been a short cut for vehicles between Eastway and the A6 Garstang Road and has given cause
in the past for a number of traffic calming features to be installed in an attempt to slow vehicle speeds, although many motorists travel far too fast, particularly on the sections where there is no footway, poor forward visibility and a strong likelihood to encounter vulnerable road users.

“The decision to take the Guild Wheel along D’urton Lane was made in the knowledge that for the most part, outside of peak hours, the route would be relatively quiet from a vehicle perspective. Added to this was the longer term prospect of D’urton Lane being closed to through traffic thus eliminating the short cutting traffic.

“Any potential benefit of closing D’urton Lane to through traffic would be lost if a major development of this scale is progressed at a location that appears unsuitable for such an intensive development.”

Preston Rural East councillor Neil Cartwright has also added his voice to those against the development.

He says the development does not fit with the North West Preston Masterplan, which would see thousands of new homes built in a Garden City beyond Cottam and Ingol.

County council view

Lancashire County Council’s highways department has not raised any objection.

The development comes just weeks after the county council announced it was taking steps to protect the Guild Wheel route from development. The plans were criticised by cycling campaigners.

Planning officers in their conclusion on D’Urton lane state: “The proposed development would deliver residential development, including affordable housing on a site, which is identified within the North West Preston strategic location for residential development.

“The proposed scheme would not have any unacceptable adverse impacts upon the amenities of neighbouring residents, visual amenity, open space, landscape, ecology and the natural environment, air quality, ground conditions, archaeology and the historic environment’ and traffic and highway safety.

“The design and layout of the proposed development, together with the agreed on-=site and off-site mitigation measures and improvements are considered acceptable.”

The plans will be decided by councillors on the city council planning committee from 1.30pm on Thursday 3 December at the Town Hall.

What do you think of the recommendation? Do you use the Guild Wheel? Let us know your views in the comments below

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