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Plan for new homes gains approval – but councillor argues it won't benefit community

Permission granted for development on Rivacre Academy site

Rivacre Academyin Ellesmere Port, which closed earlier this year

Objections were raised to the prospect of additional homes on a former Ellesmere Port private day nursery site.

Merseyside based Forth Homes Construction told the borough council it was seeking permission for the four detached properties at Rivacre Academy on Forest Road where the nursery has closed.

Outline plans were originally agreed for a new day nursery and up to 24 dwellings on the wider site although a detailed permission envisaged a new nursery and 22 homes.

The borough’s planning committee heard the developer was now proposing the four dwellings on land intended for the new nursery.

Netherpool ward councillor Diane Roberts (Lab) called the application in due to concerns the properties would be overdevelopment with loss of privacy. The new build would be ‘a dominant addition to the street scene’ she believed which would have a detrimental impact on the character of the area and affect parking and highway safety.

Councillors heard a number of objections had been received opposing the principle of houses being erected on a bungalow estate among other issues.

Cllr Roberts herself pointed out it was hoped there may have been a compromise involving bungalows and argued the new build homes would bring no benefits to the community.

Other dwellings in the vicinity are pre war semis, post war prefabs and 1960s semis with Rivacre Valley primary school and its playing fields nearby according to a report.

The site in the established residential area has easy access to a range of services and facilities and is within walking distance to a train station, bus stops on a major route and cycle routes.

A new purpose built day nursery recently opened on Rossmore Road West close to a Tesco Express would also be within walking distance.

Planners accepted the two storey new build compared with the previous low level nursery would not now appear as almost as a transition from the neighbouring bungalows but there would be no unacceptable overlooking.

It would not be significantly out of keeping and there would be less traffic than with the nursery.

Approval was recommended subject to conditions and a legal agreement. Permission was agreed on a 10-1 vote.

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