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95 HOMES: St Albans residents object to green belt development plans

 Published on: 16th March 2022   |   By: Dean Shaw   |   Category: Uncategorized

Residents in St Albans have voiced their concerns about plans for 95 new homes on green belt land.

The proposed development would see land dividing Park Street from St Stephen’s turned into housing with residents concerned it would join the two communities.

The land, which is opposite the BP garage, is regarded by locals as an important dividing piece of land with a pressure group launched to “retain a pleasant environment”.

That pressure group, called Greenbelt, has been established by local resident Paul King who feels the plans are unacceptable.

He said: “This land isn’t just part of the rural gap between Park Street village and St Albans, it is the gap. Approval of this scheme would therefore eliminate Park Street as a separate village.

“In 2014 a government inspector, on appeal, ruled that the loss of a much smaller piece of land adjacent to the land in question would represent unacceptable encroachment. Yet now we are faced with the elimination of something 11 times the size.

“Once again local residents are being forced to fight developers and opportunistic land owners, in order to retain a pleasant environment in which to live.”

The plans have been submitted by developers M Scott Properties who defended the plans.

They said: “This narrow strip of land can be released from the Green Belt for development without substantial harm to the remaining Green Belt areas, on the basis that it is well contained and lies separated from the surrounding open countryside.

“The retention and enhancement of the existing vegetation structure will preserve the separation of settlements and the integrity and character of the surrounding rural landscape.”

Comments on the proposal by the public had to be submitted by March 26 with the plans available on St Albans District Council’s planning portal using reference 5/2022/0267.

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