The proposed path after 43 Clos Nant Glaswg is demolished (Image: Google Maps / Ben Summer)

Controversial housing development will go ahead despite more than 200 objections

Residents are worried about safety and say the new homes will be isolated

THE building of 45 affordable homes and the demolition of a nearby house has been approved by Cardiff Council, despite the concerns of hundreds of residents.

The homes, to be built north of semi-rural Ty-Draw Road in Pontprennau, will all be affordable, zero-carbon social housing.

Access to the new properties will be via a shared foot and cycle path, which will require the house at 43 Clos Nant Glaswg to be demolished. If this goes ahead, Clos Nant Glaswg will no longer be a cul-de-sac.

Joanna Fashan, who lives near 43 Clos Nant Glaswg, told The Cardiffian: “We are obviously really disappointed. It’s one of the most-fought planning decisions that Cardiff Council has had.

“We’ve put in about 1,000 hours’ work to oppose this, and half of what we put in writing wasn’t even quoted or put in the committee’s report. We feel exceptionally let down.”

The location of the proposed development north of Ty-Draw Road in Pontprennau (Image: Ordnance Survey / Ben Summer)

When asked why many opposed the decision, Ms Fashan explained that the new houses on the outer edge of Cardiff would be left isolated with inadequate access except for the new footpath.

“There should have been more provision for highways rather than putting an alleyway through our estate,” she said.

“Our other complaints include safety, light and noise pollution, and cutting down a hedgerow with a legal covenant on it that the council imposed years ago.”

But Emma Fortune, the agent behind the application, said: “Whilst it has been met with local resistance, this footpath and cycleway will provide a strategic travel link to both existing and future residents, providing access to and from the shops, the services, and the public transport links that will be developed within the site.”

The plans were approved in a planning committee meeting on Wednesday, February 2, despite over 200 written objections by residents and the concerns of some councillors.

The development, to be built by construction firm Edenstone Homes and not-for-profit landlords United Welsh, forms part of Cardiff’s current Local Development Plan. The LDP runs until 2026 and includes the building of 4,500 homes in North East Cardiff near Pontprennau.

Residents: We’re worried about safety

In the planning meeting, Ms Fashan said: “Our primary concern is that there is no discussion in the plans around security for existing residents.

“This alleyway opens up the development from Ty-Draw Road into Pontprennau, essentially creating a rat run. We are therefore at risk of higher crime rates, for instance from opportunist car thieves.

“This puts the safety and security of the whole Pontprennau community at risk.”

However, Tim Smale, planning director of Edenstone, said: “[The path] is a safe and commodious route, and will encourage active travel. It will create a safe and secure environment and it incorporates the advice of the crime prevention adviser and highways officers. It will be lit, with suitable bollards.”

Councillors: Developments are piecemeal and isolated

Conservative ward councillors Dianne Rees and Joel Williams also spoke in the meeting, describing the development as piecemeal and criticising the lack of access to the site.

Coun Williams said: “The proposals would create an isolated development cut off from local amenities such as schools, doctors, and other public services, and indeed public transport.”

However, he stressed: “As a community we are supportive of the need to develop affordable and social housing.”

Coun Rees added: “This is a development in relative isolation on the urban fringe. It would effectively restrict residents to the site after dark as crossing into Pontprennau would require crossing an unlit road with country speed limits.”

“Yes, there will be development in the future, but who knows when?”

Ty-Draw Road, where the new crossing will be built (Image: Google Maps)

Others who opposed the issue include Joel James, Conservative MS for South Wales Central. He highlighted the council’s own guidance that affordable housing should be distributed throughout a site and near amenities, not concentrated and isolated. He also raised concerns about the prevention of anti-social behaviour on the new path.

Anna McMorrin, Labour MP for Cardiff North, also wrote to the council to raise concerns about crime and the impact on the quiet nature of Clos Nant Glaswg.

Planning permission has technically not yet been given, because the application has been called in by the Welsh Government who will consider the application and could prevent the granting of planning permission. But if, as seems likely, the Welsh Government do not take action, planning permission will take effect following Wednesday’s vote.

Residents of Clos Nant Glaswg could seek judicial review but this would be costly and time-consuming.