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 Archive

November 2006 

West and North West of Crawley Joint Area Action Plan: Issues and Options

Duly Made Representations for Mr John Steele (2853) on behalf of The Horsham Society (November 2006)

Development principles and objectives : Paragraph 2.10

Response

“The Horsham Society's interests lie primarily in the impact that the development will have on Horsham town. We support the "neighbourhood" principle that has served Crawley well and believe that this approach in itself should determine the answers to some of the questions posed in this consultation document. We particularly support the principle that the new development should avoid contributing to the coalescence of settlements. But we believe that words "by maintaining the sense of separation between Crawley and Horsham" do not go far enough. It is not only the sense of separation but the reality that must be protected. The Horsham Society wishes to see the continued existence of an effective Strategic Gap.”

Summary

“Support the "neighbourhood" principle that has served Crawley well and the principle that the new development should avoid contributing to the coalescence of settlements. However, the Horsham Society feels that the statement "by maintaining the sense of separation between Crawley and Horsham" does not go far enough.”

Question Set 1 (The Environment)

What do you think are the most important environmental or historic features in the Area of Study?

What design features do you think could be used to ‘blend’ a new urban area into the existing urban area and the surrounding countryside?

How would public access and links to the countryside from the new development be improved from those that currently exist?

Do you have any suggestions as to how the most important landscape features and character areas can be protected whilst accommodating development and what are the opportunities for protecting and enhancing the area?  

Are there any particular characteristics about the current urban/rural edge that you feel should be retained or enhanced?

What type of green/open spaces do you consider important for a community and how can these be integrated with the new development, the existing built-up areas of Crawley and the surrounding countryside?

Response

“The Horsham Society considers it to be essential that the development provides a clear and defensible boundary on the west side to ensure that the Strategic Gap is unambiguously defined. We therefore have concerns about suggestions that blur the edges of town and country and will need to be convinced that this is not incompatible with the concept of a clear defensible boundary. One possibility could be to define the boundary with strategic open space.”

Summary

“It is essential the development provides a clear and defensible boundary on the west side to ensure that the Strategic Gap is unambiguously defined. We have concerns about blurring the edges of town and country. One possibility could be to define the boundary with strategic open space.”

Question Set 3  (Employment Provision)

Do you think land for employment use should be included in the neighbourhood?

Should the development West and North West of Crawley deliver strategic employment provision or should development only accommodate the commercial floorspace required for a new neighbourhood?

Should any new strategic employment provision be accommodated within the new neighbourhood or provided in direct connection with the existing employment areas at Gatwick and Manor Royal?

What type of employment do you think is needed?

Response

“The "neighbourhood" principle should mean that apart from housing there should be adequate provision of community facilities, including commercial space to the extent needed to make for a rounded sustainable community. It is unclear what the term "commercial floorspace" means but if it includes, for example, a pub, local shops and possibly some light industrial units then that is appropriate. We do not consider this area should be used to accommodate strategic employment provision including industrial parks etc.”

Summary

“The "neighbourhood" principle should include commercial space needed to make a sustainable community. If "commercial floorspace" means, for example, a pub, local shops and possibly some light industrial units then that is appropriate. This area should be used to accommodate strategic employment provision including industrial parks etc.”

Question Set 5 (Transport and Highway Infrastructure)

When and where do you think the worst traffic congestion occurs in the western neighbourhoods of Crawley?

How effective are existing public transport services in the area?

What are the opportunities to provide for sustainable transport provision?

What are the advantages and disadvantages of building a relief road in conjunction with the development?

What do you perceive to be the key issues and constraints to the delivery of any such relief road?

Response

“The Horsham Society is concerned about the proposal for a relief road. It is not clear whether the road is intended to provide for current traffic or that generated by the new development, nor is it clear what size it might be or its preferred route. As currently posed the question is too general to be answered one way or another. We would observe however that a relief road through the new development would probably be divisive, whereas one on the edge could contribute to providing a defensible boundary.”

Summary

“It is not clear whether the road is intended to provide for current traffic or that generated by the new development, nor is it clear what size it might be or its preferred route. A relief road through the new development would probably be divisive, whereas one on the edge could contribute to providing a defensible boundary.”

Question Set 6 (Utilities and Infrastructure)

In your view, have we identified all the right constraints and requirements at this stage?

In light of the responses received to date, are there specific areas or issues that we should give priority to in order to bring the JAAP forward to the next stage?

Response

“The Horsham Society is concerned that new development should only proceed once strategic infrastructure is in place. We remain unconvinced that there are adequate reserves of water, for example, to serve a large new community when the authorities cannot provide it now. We believe the issue of adequate hospital provision should be a pre-requisite for any development.”

Summary

“New development should only proceed once strategic infrastructure is in place. Unconvinced that there are adequate reserves of water, for example, to serve a large new community when the authorities cannot currently provide it. Adequate hospital provision should be a pre-requisite for any development.”

Question Set 7 (Alternative Land Uses)

Do you agree that the alternative land uses, discussed in this document should be explored further through the JAAP?

Are there any alternative land uses not listed in this document that should be considered as part of the JAAP?

Are there any parts of the Area of Study that a particular alternative land use should avoid?

Are there specific land areas within the Area of Study that lend themselves particularly well to any of the above uses?

Are there any alternative land uses, discussed in this document, that should not be considered further in this JAAP?

Response

“The Horsham Society views with interest proposals to examine additional uses such as a hospital, university, new rail connections etc. Whilst they might be desirable in their own right their inclusion should not prejudice the provision of the necessary homes. Furthermore we wish to see a commitment in the document that if any such alternative uses are included so too will provision for all ancillary requirements. In other words if a university or hospital were included within the area of study so must provision for housing for staff, students etc, and any necessary infrastructure such as CHP. The inclusion of a large facility within the area of study must not be allowed to put later pressure on the Strategic Gap.”

Summary

“Alternative land uses might be desirable in their own right but their inclusion should not prejudice the provision of the necessary homes. We wish to see a commitment that if any alternative uses are included so too will provision for all ancillary requirements and any necessary infrastructure. The inclusion of a large facility within the area of study must not put later pressure on the Strategic Gap.”

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