Out of hours press enquiries, call 07918 195 238.
CAMBRIDGE PRIMATE LAB - The appeal
Posted 1 May 2002
Cambridge University has now formally appealed against the planning authority's rejection of their proposed primate research centre. See our easy guide on how to compose your objection to the appeal.
RESEARCH BUILDINGS AT HUNTINGDON ROAD, CAMBRIDGE
APPEAL BY THE CHANCELLOR, MASTERS AND SCHOLARS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE
GROUNDS OF APPEAL
- The appeal proposal comprises research and development which accords with and is supported by national, strategic and local policies.
- The particular form of research proposed within the new buildings Is In the national interest, a view supported by the Department of Trade and Industry and reflected in the grant of national funding.
- The proposed site is in research use. It largely comprises a developed site. The proposal as revised in discussion with the local planning authority would improve the appearance and utility of the site in the overall public interest. It comprises an extension of the existing facilities.
- The proposed research use would be related to the existing research use established at the site and would be one for which the site would be particularly well suited as part of the research activities carried on by the University. In the circumstances it would accord with policy SP 18/6 of the Structure Plan.
- There is no objection to the proposal by the Planning Authority on grounds of landscape or visual impact. It is not suggested that the proposal will have any impact on residential amenity by reason of noise, smell or light. The Planning Authority accepts that the proposal will not compromise or otherwise harm the openness the Green Belt.
- There is no objection to the proposal by the County Council (as Highway Authority) or by the Highways Agency on grounds of highway capacity or highway safety. The site has immediate access to the main highway network, which is a bus route- The University would include the use within its overall plan for the encouragement of sustainable transportation.
- As revised by letter dated 18th March 2002, the local authority's Decision Notice refers to the view expressed by the Constabulary that "demonstrations at the site will be likely to result in road blockages and a serious danger to public safety". It is asserted that the particular site is unacceptable because of the risk to public safety. The absence of objection by either of the Highway Authorities has been referred to above. In his letter dated 1st March 2002 (written before the revised Decision Notice) the Chief Constable has specifically made clear that the Police do not object to the proposal. It is not accepted that this site has any characteristics that justify the conclusion that there would be road blockages such as to give rise to serious danger to public safety. On the contrary, In so far as demonstrations did arise (the asserted likelihood of which is not accepted), the width of the highway adjoining the site and the site's other characteristics would enable pedestrians and traffic to be controlled so as to minimise any risk to public safety. There is no evidence to support the conclusion that there is any identified additional risk to safety from the use of the proposed site as opposed to any other which would justify overriding the compelling benefits in the proposal and withholding planning permission.
- In all the circumstances the appeal should be allowed and planning permission granted for the development proposed.
Hewitson Becke + Shaw
42 Newmarket Road
Cambridge CBS 8EP
Solicitors to the Appellants
7 May 2002