Taylor Wimpey has submitted a planning application for the first stage of a development that will see 500 new homes built on Moreton Hall, in Bury St Edmunds.
The developer is seeking consent for the first of five build phases – for 100 homes north of Mount Road – with no more than 50 to be occupied before the completion of the Eastern Relief Road (ERR).
It wants to build the houses to ‘stimulate funding for the construction’ of the ERR, but concerns remain about not having suitable infrastructure in place before the homes are occupied.
Borough councillor Terry Buckle said: “I actually think the road ought to be put in before the houses and, if they build the houses, no-one should go in before the road is built.”
County councillor Trevor Beckwith said it was naive to think the ERR would prevent the impact of more traffic on the estate’s often heavily congested Sainsbury’s roundabout.
“It’s quite simple. If you’re going to add more cars, you’re going to get more congestion – it’s not rocket science.”
Borough councillor Frank Warby said he would like to see the houses and the ERR built at the same time to prevent residents from being inconvenienced by works traffic any longer than necessary, but he is keen for the project to get underway as soon as possible.
“Common sense should prevail but we need it done now - it’s been hanging about for too long,” he said.
Taylor Wimpey’s first build phase would also include a small local centre ‘to meet the day-to-day needs of residents’ and an allotments area.
The application, which also seeks outline planning permission for the remaining 400 houses, is likely to be considered by Development Control early next year and, if approved, building work could start around August next year, with the first residents moving in towards the beginning of 2016. The ERR is due to be completed around April/May of that year.
A spokesman for Taylor Wimpey said: “We are pleased to have submitted our planning application for up to 500 high-quality new homes.
“Our proposals form the residential element of the wider expansion of Moreton Hall which will provide a secondary school, the new Eastern Relief Road and an extension to the Suffolk Business Park.
“Should our planning application be approved, this development will help to fulfil continuing demand for high-quality new homes in the area.”
Cllr Terry Clements, cabinet member for planning, said: “I am very pleased that the in-depth Vision 2031 process is now delivering results. With ongoing community involvement, we have put the framework for accommodating future growth around Bury St Edmunds in place.
“The framework gives the principles of development, a developer led masterplan showing how the principles are interpreted, and now we have the full detail of an application which will be determined by the local planning authority after public consultation.”
Moreton Hall is the second of three sites in Bury with adopted Vision 2031 masterplans to have had a planning application submitted.