Plan for 400 homes sparks traffic fears

Community leaders in Swaffham are working to protect the town from being swamped by cars from a proposed 400-home estate.

Community leaders in Swaffham are working to protect the town from being swamped by cars from a proposed 400-home estate.

The scheme to build the large estate on the former Redland Tiles site at the A1065 Brandon Road is tipped for approval by Breckland Council at a meeting next Monday.

But there are fears at Swaffham Town Council that up to 800 cars from the homes will jam the town's roads and it is asking developer Gladedale (Anglia) Ltd to fund further transport improvements.

The developer has already agreed to build a roundabout at the estate's access onto Brandon Road, pay £40,000 to extend footpath and cycleways on Brandon Road and pay £60,000 for an on-demand bus to run in the town.

Swaffham town clerk Richard Bishop said that it is working with the developer and Norfolk County Council to ensure money is available to improve nearby road junctions at Filby Road and Watton Road.

Mr Bishop said: “One of our major concerns was traffic because all of a sudden we could have up to 800 extra cars on the road.

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“The developer needs to make it easier for people to travel through the town and stop the traffic from clogging up.”

Elsewhere the town council has praised the developer for accepting suggested changes to building designs and the estate's three recreation areas, for making the roundabout larger, funding the bus service and increasing on site parking to 800.

The development would include 130 affordable homes and provide £507,500 investment to create a multi-use sports area, as well as ploughing money into local schools, the library and funding public art on the site.

Breckland principal planning officer Nick Moys says that Gladedale should be given full permission for 135 homes and outline permission for the remaining 265 houses on the 10.7 hectare site.

Mr Moys' report to the development control committee says that there is plenty of alternate land to create jobs in the town and that concerns about extra traffic and the isolation of the site are dealt with by the new roundabout, bus service and improved footpath and cycleways.

Mr Moys says in his report: “Compared to previous commercial uses the proposed residential use would reduce traffic levels, particularly of HGVs.”

He backs the approach of developers in adopting a distinct design for different areas of the estate, mixing the style of a Norfolk village with traditional Georgian terraces and courtyards.

The development is expected to be made up of about 68 detached three and four bedroom homes, 124 semi-detached two and three bedroom homes, 168 terraced and linked two and three bedroom homes and 40 one and two bedroom apartments.

t The plans for the site will be decided at the Breckland meeting at its council offices in Dereham at 9.30am.

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