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Unpopular centre plans on green land given more time

The greenfield land between Birchwood Lane, Somercotes, and Cotes Park Industrial Estate, which has been earmarked by Clowes Developments for a distribution centre.

The greenfield land between Birchwood Lane, Somercotes, and Cotes Park Industrial Estate, which has been earmarked by Clowes Developments for a distribution centre.

Developers are continuing to stall over unpopular plans for a distribution centre on a greenfield site near Somercotes.

Clowes Development Ltd’s planning application to build industrial units on 27.8 acres near Birchwood Lane was originally twice rejected by Amber Valley Borough Council’s planning committee before it was approved at a full council meeting in 2010.

But the developers have now been granted a further time extension before any work is expected after an Amber Valley Borough Council planning meeting at Ripley Town Hall, last Monday, February 17.

A Clowes Development Ltd spokesman said: “Due to the significant downturn in the economic climate, this site has not been attractive to the market and therefore has thus failed to be implemented.”

Protestors who originally opposed the development in an effort to preserve the greenfield land once again raised further objections during the latest meeting.

Concerned resident Rob Ward said the land in question forms a vital barrier between Birchwood Lane residents and Cotes Park industrial estate.

Protestor Laura Jane Ranby questioned whether the development would create large employment opportunities and Paul Curran-Bilbie and Amber Valley Borough Cllr Paul Smith said the centre would create traffic chaos on the B600 road.

Amber Valley Borough Cllr Brian Lyttle compared the time extension and further delays and protests as being like “Groundhog Day”.

The planning committee had originally rejected the application in an effort to preserve trees, hedgerows and a green buffer between homes and Cotes industrial estate and after listening to concerns about flooding, traffic, noise and light pollution concerns.

Mr Curran-Bilbie was appalled when the full council originally over-ruled the planning committee and is now concerned the developer is pushing to get the land allocated for housing.

 

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