(Councillor Vaughan declared a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in the matter to be discussed. He left the room during the consideration of this item and took no part in the vote on the matter to be determined).
The Planning Manager:
a) advised that outline planning permission was granted conditionally in 2017 (2017/0586/OUT) for the principle of development to erect two and three storey buildings to accommodate a mix of office, laboratory and higher end workshops as part of Phase 2 of Lincoln Science and Innovation Park (LSIP), with all matters reserved
b) advised that the reserved matters application before Planning Committee tonight proposed a 3 storey building to accommodate offices located to the west of Poplar Avenue and north of Beevor Street adjacent to the existing Science and Innovation Park buildings, to provide accommodation for new start-up businesses as well as "grow on space" for companies expanding and moving from the Boole Technology Centre
c) reported further on the location of the application site with the Boole Technology Centre to the east of the site and the Charlotte Scott building to the north
d) highlighted that Lincoln Science and Innovation Park was founded in 2012 as a joint venture between the University of Lincoln and the Lincolnshire Co-op, allocated as a strategic employment site within the Central Lincolnshire Local Plan; the presumption would be for the Strategic Employment Sites to meet the needs for large scale investment that required significant land take, small scale and/or piecemeal development that prevented the delivery of large scale investment would be refused
e) outlined the history relevant to the application site as detailed within the officer’s report
f) requested that a further additional condition be imposed on the grant of planning permission requiring a detailed landscaping scheme to be implemented on site
g) provided details of the policies pertaining to the application as follows:
· Policy LP1: A Presumption in Favour of Sustainable Development
· Policy LP5: Delivering Prosperity and Jobs
· Policy LP26: Design and Amenity
· Policy LP31: Lincoln's Economy
h) outlined the responses made to the consultation exercise
i) advised members of the main issues to be considered as part of the application to assess the proposal with regard to:
· National and Local Planning Policy
· Flood Risk and Surface Water Drainage
· Contaminated Land
· Air Quality and Sustainable Transport
· External Plant Noise
· External Lighting
· Construction/Demolition Impacts
j) concluded that:
· The proposed development would be in accordance with the perimeters set out in the Outline planning application and would be in accordance with the Local Plan allocation.
· The proposed building would be of an appropriate design and would be a beneficial addition to the next phase of the LSIP development.
Members discussed the content of the officer’s report in further detail, raising the following main points:
· It was hoped that further measures would have been included within the proposed scheme to reduce the impact of the building on carbon footprint in line with concerns regarding climate change.
· It would be credible for City of Lincoln Council’s own planning applications to include environmentally friendly measures to support reduction in carbon footprint.
· The comments made by Lincoln Civic Trust regarding issues of traffic congestion/access to the site in the area and reliance on private transport were noted. It was hoped that the Lincoln Transport Plan for the city would come forward soon.
· The proposed development was unlikely to win any architectural awards, however, the building was fit for purpose.
· Why wasn’t the Drainage Board consulted on this planning application?
The Planning Manager offered the following points of clarification:
· In terms of climate change/sustainability measures, the planning application did incorporate environmentally friendly elements such as living walls, landscaping and an additional tree planting scheme. Building Control measures incorporated a ‘fabric first’ approach to conserving energy. Planning officers would ask the applicant to do as much as it could to support environmental sustainability.
· In terms of public transport implications, the Transport Strategy from the Highways Authority was awaited. There would always be a requirement for an element of car parking in these types of development due to the use of the building. Walking and cycling links were better here than in some locations.
· The Internal Drainage Board had been consulted on the scheme before us. Only respondents having submitted comments were summarised within the report to keep it manageable in terms of length. A process was agreed with Lincolnshire County Council as lead Flood Authority to pull together comments from each Drainage Board and issue a single response to planning applications. Comments were often received from individual Internal Drainage Board’s and these were also taken into account. The Environment Agency was satisfied due to flood risk measures to be employed incorporating use of a drainage channel that there were no technical concerns with regard to the management of flood risk.
Members questioned why there was no reference to the living wall element of the planning application within the report.
The Planning Manager confirmed that there was an issue with the wording on the applicant’s plans being too small to read, although the living wall was listed. The green wall had value in promoting cleaner air quality in terms of environment and biodiversity. There would also be a wildlife meadow and grassed area incorporated into the second phase of the scheme.
RESOLVED that planning permission be granted subject to the following conditions: