Posted: 02.04.19 at 12:48 by The Editor
Plans for a controversial, large-scale housing development in the Cosmeston area were presented to local people yesterday. The event was designed to encourage members of the public to have their say on the project masterplan and related issues.
The Welsh Government, which owns the land involved, is preparing to submit detailed proposals to the Vale of Glamorgan, which will make the decision on planning permission. The consultation alongside a small exhibition were held at the nearby Cosmeston community cafe.
The masterplan says that the public's input can ''be considered as part of the design process before key decisions regarding the masterplan are taken''.
The plan suggests building 567 homes, a new primary school, community facilities, public open spaces, play areas and the extension of the NCN88 cycle route through the site.
There is likely to be a good deal of discussion in the weeks and months ahead. Welsh Government and the Vale of Glamorgan council argue that there is a serious shortage of housing, especially affordable housing, in the Vale. Shelter Cymru, the housing charity, calls this a full blown 'housing crisis.'
Local residents at the Cosmeston meeting made a range of arguments against the masterplan. The most prominent were concerned with the level of traffic congestion.
One resident said that previous housing decisions had already overloaded local roads. ''It already takes me a considerably longer time to get out of Sully road in the rush hour due to the new housing development that was created nearby," she said. "It's not that I'm against housing and development but more consideration needs to be taken for those already in the area and the effects it will have on them''.
There are also decisions to be taken about schools. The Welsh government favours opening a new Welsh medium primary school on the Cosmeston site. The Council's 5 year strategic plan, dating from 2015, supports promotion of the Welsh language, including in education, in line with the Cardiff Bay Government's Welsh Language Measure.
A range of environmental points were also disputed, with some local residents arguing that brown-field sites in Cardiff would be more suitable for a big housing project than the Cosmeston green sites. The planning team have outlined that they have ''sought, to retain, protect and enhance the biodiversity interest on site'' whilst producing their proposal.
On transport, the plan proposes enhanced cycle routes and an investigation into bus routes, but local residents were not convinced that this would deal with the already growing traffic congestion. Cosmeston is located 5 miles outside of the city centre and has no direct train links. Residents are concerned that the development would inevitably lead to an increase in cars in the area.
The Welsh government will be hoping that the masterplan's commitment to ensuring that 40% of the new homes built on the site will be ''affordable housing'', might offset local objections.
For those unable to attend the consultation event yesterday, you can view the masterplan here:
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