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Major housing scheme in Downham Market back on agenda

Downham Market
Downham Market

New plans for a major housing scheme in Downham has been submitted – and the applicant says it remedies issues on a previously-rejected version.

The proposals for up to 300 homes and associated infrastructure and access on land at Nightingale Lane were submitted by the Grosvenor Partnership 3 at the end of May.

It comes after a previous application for up to 300 new homes at the site was refused by West Norfolk Council’s planning committee in April.

At the time, the committee agreed the density of the scheme was too high.

However, planning documents on the online portal say “the dwellings per gross hectare is much lower at an overall 22dph”.

The documents state that the plan demonstrates a capacity of 270 dwellings at the site, using a mix of house types from one-bed maisonette dwellings to four-bed detached.

“The house types mix is generally the same as identified in the previous outline planning application,” it states.

“Using the concept plan as a base we have created a layout with positive street scenes throughout, with safe and secure open space environments,” it adds.

According to the summary of the design and access statement “the indicative scheme layout has been carefully developed to ensure that the proposed development responds to the site context and opportunities and constraints as set out within this design and access statement”.

It goes on to say the site is “considered to be suitable for a residential development and can be accommodated by the existing infrastructure in the area”.

However, at a public meeting held in the town regarding the previous planning application in February, many residents claimed that the infrastructure was “not sufficient” for the current population, let alone with hundreds of new residents.

An objection to the application on the site says: “We are a market town not a city, and our existing infrastructure will not cope.

“I understand Downham must accept further development but this is too much, too soon.”

Development is due to go ahead for this part of the town, though, as planning consent for 170 homes to be built on land off of the A1122 was granted last summer.

According to the West Norfolk Council planning portal, the determination deadline for the proposals is October 3.

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