Revised Planning Application Gives Rise to Concerns over Further Traffic Chaos

An application on behalf of the owner of Avalon, Apperley Lane, Rawdon, Leeds, LS19 7DX to convert the existing building into 6 appartments with parking for 9 vehicles threatens to increase the already congested situation at the notorious traffic lights situated at the junction of Micklefield Lane and Apperley Lane. All residents of Apperley Lane and Little London are strongly urged to submit an objection to Bradford Planners before 17 September.  The WARD organisation has already put in a letter of objection, see below:

This development is totally out of character with the conservation area in which it is sited.  The proposals will result in a loss of privacy and visual amenity to neighbours and will, without doubt, add to traffic congestion and adversely affect road safety at this busy junction. 

The ingress and egress to the development is the existing one and this already has poor and unsuitable vehicular access as it is sited within 25 metres of the traffic lights at the junction of Micklefield Lane and Apperley Lane.  At peak times the traffic from these lights backs up half a mile to the JCT 600 roundabout where Apperley Lane meets the A65.  Existing residents on the site already have great difficulty exiting safely and are unable to exit right due to the back-up of traffic at the lights.  In addition, traffic travelling north east from Apperley Bridge to the A65 continually violates the 30 mph speed limit as the traffic lights are constantly green for long periods and this is a perpetual hazard when exiting from the proposed site.  Nine parking places are probably insufficient to accommodate all the vehicles from six two bedroomed apartments and this will result in some residents and visitors having to park on Apperley Lane itself, where presently inhabitants in the row of terraced houses opposite Avalon are already forced to park on their side of the main road having absolutely no alternative parking spaces.  This will also present problems for service and delivery vehicles who will inevitably part on the roadside to service the proposed development eg refuse collection vehicles will do this on a regular basis.  Because of residential parking on the opposite side of the road to Avalon this will pose a further problem by narrowing an already narrow road into a pinch-point inviting a major accident on this heavily trafficked road.

 A private MET Engineering Traffic Study on the A658 and A65, carried out in 2011, has already confirmed that the traffic on these two roads has reached capacity at peak times.  Airport expansion has also forced more vehicles onto the A658 and plans to increase passenger numbers further at LBIA will undoubtedly increase the number of hazardous situations and traffic incidents in the future.  This proposal can only exacerbate the chaotic traffic situation at this dangerous junction and, together with the narrow upper part of Green Lane, is already causing Leeds Transport Department to give some thought to traffic calming measures on both Apperley Lane and Green Lane.

 Residents in this part of Rawdon already have severe problems exiting and accessing the small lanes in Little London and there is real concern for road safety both on Apperley Lane and Green Lane.  Residents also fear that if this proposal is allowed it will set a precedent for further development around this site as the proposer is believed also to own further land adjacent to the Avalon property.  Again, this causes problems of access and road safety issues which are paramount.

 Despite the proposal to widen the access to the site this does not deal with the problems of visibility on a stretch of highway where the principal function is that of carrying traffic freely between centres of population.  The slowing and turning manoeuvres of vehicles entering or leaving the access and the possibility of vehicles standing on the highway would lead to conflict and interference with such free flow to the detriment of the principal function and, as such, would be contrary to Policies TM2 and TM19A Council’s Replacement Unitary Development Plan.

 The site forms part of a larger area which is covered by a Tree Preservation Order and this means it would be likely to result in future demand for felling and lopping of mature trees to the long term detriment of the visual amenity of the area as a whole.  This would be contrary to policies UR3, D1, D5, NE4, NE5 and NE6 of the Council’s Replacement Unitary Development Plan. 

 The WARD organisation strongly urges Bradford’s Planning Department to reject this application because of real concerns about pedestrian and road safety and for all of the further above listed issues. 

 Yours faithfully

 Dr David Ingham

Chairman

Wharfedale & Airedale Review Development”

People living the area wishing to object to the above application are welcome to use material from the above letter providing it is communicated in their own words.  This is important as Planning Departments do not accept multiple copies of identical material.

Letters should be headed with the planning application no. and details as follows:

APPLICATION NO. 14/02256/FUL : Avalon, Apperley Lane, Rawdon, Leeds, LS19 7DX

Proposal:  Redevelopment of existing dwelling and site to 6 self contained apartments & parking for 9 vehicles

The letter should be marked for the attention of Richard Cryer, Department of Regeneration & Culture, Planning Department, Jacob’s Well, Bradford, BD1 5RW.  Letters can also be sent by email and attachment to richard.cryer@bradford.gov.uk