Ironbridge Power Station development plans: Traffic and highways issues among concerns
Traffic and highways issues were among residents' concerns over a blueprint for the re-development of Ironbridge Power Station.
Residents told a Shropshire Local Plan Review public consultation meeting that while they welcomed the re-development of the site, in Buildwas, they have concerns about the number of properties and vehicles it will bring to already struggling road junctions.
Power station site owner Harworth is preparing a scheme for around 1,000 dwellings and business units following demolition of the landmark cooling towers and a major mineral extraction programme.
Residents told the meeting bottle-neck junctions including at Much Wenlock, Farley and Ironbridge Road "which has accidents on a regular basis" would need tackling.
Buildwas residents have spoken of their hopes of getting “beautiful” designs for 1,000 new homes earmarked to replace the former Ironbridge Power Station.
A number of residents told a public consultation meeting for the Shropshire Local Plan Review that they wanted to see affordable properties, and dwellings with plenty of space.
Buildwas parish councillor resident Jill Grainger said: “None of us want to see the sort of housing we have seen at Lawley – designs which look like children’s building blocks.”
The meeting on Wednesday heard that site owner Harworth was due to select the housebuilders.
The county's strategic transport and contracts manager Matt Johnson told the meeting: "There will be two transport requirements for the developers. One for post planning, and another for demolition and construction."
"It requires Harworth to register a transport model with us. It will be checked from the start. For us, it involves looking at 23 to 25 junctions including roundabouts - including looking at the highway effect between Emstrey at Shrewsbury and Much Wenlock.
"Telford & Wrekin clearly has a stake. They need to review their transport plan so it seems expedient for Harworth to get involved with Telford.
"Telford is the holders of that (transport) model and are the sponsors for it. We have already raised a few issues. It is absolutely not going to be pushed on you. Once completed it will be part of their planning application."
Addressing concerns about the future role of Buildwas Parish Council, Shropshire's senior policy officer Daniel Corden explained that he was not aware of any Boundary Commission changes that would take the development site out of the parish.
He further stated that planning details would be addressed as part of the planning application process and not this review.
Speaking afterwards Councillor Claire Wild, Shropshire Council's representative for Severn Valley, said: "It was a very good meeting. There were some very constructive comments, especially in relation to the design and sustainability of the site.
"There is huge concern about the scheme and how it is going to be phased which is the big question. Also, without the railway we can't bring the site forward. We need to get rid of the gravel and the ash. The railway is key."
New home proposals the former power station, Clive Barracks, in Tern Hill, and RAF Cosford have all been identified by Shropshire Council as strategic sites incorporated into the county's housing need figures.
A total of 27,850 are required by 2036. Strategic sites are large sites of more than 61 acres which will contribute to the county's economic growth.
The information form the consultation will be used in a draft plan due next spring. With the final plan due to be sent to the Planning Inspectorate in June 2020.
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