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The Case for a New Town North West of Cardiff PDF Print E-mail

As you will know we are concerned that Cardiff's Deposit LDP envisages the development of many houses along Llantrisant Road between Radyr and Creigiau without any provision for new or improved roads to deal with the extra traffic which this development will create.

 

We have joined forces with the Community Councils of Radyr & Morganstown, Pentyrch, St Fagans, the Llandaff Society, the Cardiff Civic Society and the Protect Creigiau Group to form the North West Cardiff Group in order to try to convert the LDP into a plan which might work rather than one that clearly will lead to problems. This NWC Group is representing about 25,000 residents, so hopefully it will prove to be a force to be reckoned with.

All the land that Cardiff wishes to see developed along Llantrisant Road lies in the ownership of the Earl of Plymouth Estates. If the Cardiff LDP is accepted as it currently stands, once it is adopted the Earl of Plymouth Estates will sell the land to various developers who will proceed to do their own thing at their own speed with all the resultant transport problems which would result. What we believe will be necessary is a phased approach to this development which ensures the anticipated transport problems will be addressed before any development goes ahead, but Cardiff's LDP will not deliver this. 

Also when the land is sold, because of its increase in value from agricultural land to developable land, the Earl of Plymouth Estates will gain at least £700 million from the sale.

Cardiff Civic Society has devised an alternative plan, which is attached as a Power Point presentation, which envisages the establishment of a New Town Development Corporation by the Welsh Government to manage the development of this land in an appropriate manner. The advantages of this approach are that it would not only deliver the necessary phasing of the development in that the transport improvements would be provided before houses are built, but also that it would gain the benefit of the increase in the value of the land. This would provide the Development Corporation with the necessary funding to construct the infrastructure and the income to Earl of Plymouth Estates from the land would be more in the region of £700,000 than the £700 million which it stands to gain from the Cardiff LDP proposal.

The development envisaged by the CCS plan would be a series of individual developments located along the rebuilt railway or tramway from Fairwater to Criegiau and beyond, which is a part of the Cardiff Metro proposals, each development to be centred on a railway or tram station but separated from the neighbouring developments by parkland. In this way a new 'garden town' would emerge.

Cardiff Council's intended LDP would see up to 11,000 new homes constructed between Radyr and Creigiau, which is a development that will be approximately the same size as the town of Carmarthen. Given that the traffic on Llantrisant Road heading towards Cardiff each morning peak period already seizes up every day, adding any additional volume of traffic to it from this development proposal will just considerably worsen this situation.

The North West Cardiff Group is not against the enlargement of Cardiff but believes that the proposed developments should only be allowed to go ahead after all the necessary infrastructure has been put in place. The term 'infrastructure' includes the provision of shops, schools, surgeries and other community services as well as perhaps more fundamentally the drainage, gas, electricity and water services and means of transportation. Cardiff Council's LDP does not include for the provision of any transportation improvements to accompany this new development and it is this lack of provision which is seen to be the most important by the North West Cardiff Group. The Group believes the LDP is fundamentally flawed without this provision and consequently neither sustainable nor sound. Representations to this effect have been made to all the Council's formal consultations for the LDP.

Mark Drakeford AM and Kevin Brennan MP are known to share the Group's concerns. The NWC Group has held a meeting with Mark Drakeford which resulted in a letter being sent to him dated 08 May (below) which seeks his assistance. Cardiff Civic Society has devised it's 'Parkland' scheme (also below) which is supported by the NWC Group and which it is believed would provide an acceptable way forward. The NWC Group also met with Cllr. R Patel, who is the Cabinet Member for Transport, Planning and Sustainability on 01 May and subsequently wrote to him to confirm the content of the meeting. (See letter dated 07 May below).

The NWC Group also held a meeting with Roger Lewis who has been appointed Chairman of the Cardiff Capital Region Board in order to discuss the importance of linking the development of the Cardiff Metro to the development proposal for North West Cardiff and the obvious need for alignment of these two proposals. (A note of this meeting is also below). Mark Barry is actually in charge of the Metro proposal and the group is thereore also trying to arrange to meet with Mr Barry.

To date all of this activity has not persuaded Cardiff to alter its draft LDP in any way or to recognise the need for any linkage between the development of the Metro and the development proposals for North West Cardiff. The Cabinet meets today 12 June to confirm the LDP and a copy of the report to Cabinet is below. Because of this situation the NWC Group also wrote on 09 June individually to each member of the Cabinet.

Use this link to down load copies of the documents referred to.

Please use our contact form to share your views with the Danescourt Community Association

Last Updated on Monday, 16 June 2014 21:13
 
Obituary for Radyr and District Good Neighbour Scheme PDF Print E-mail

The following is a copy of an article that was originally published in the Radyr Chain Magazine.  It was sent to us by Barbara Willis, Co-ordinator of the Radyr & District Good Neighbour Scheme.  I am sure that many of us in Danescourt are disappointed to see the loss of this facility and will join us in thanking Barabara and the team of volunteers for all the work they have put in to the scheme over the last 25 years.

 

In 1988 the then Councillor for Radyr and Morganstown, Mrs Marion Drake, put wheels in motion to start a Good Neighbour Scheme when she realized that this area, unlike most districts in Cardiff, did not have the benefit of such an organization.  The aim of the Scheme was to help the elderly and infirm with small neighbourly tasks – shopping, letter writing, befriending, changing library books, local transport etc.  In 1989 the first May Tea was held during the Radyr and Morganstown Festival for the senior residents in the community.    Volunteers made sandwiches and cakes and provided transport for many of the guests.  Between 45 and 70 residents have attended this joyous occasion every year since then; Bryn Deri School have provided entertainment and the May Queen and attendants have always visited. In 1992 a weekly coffee morning was started, a chance to get out of the house meet some friends and have a chat.  1993 saw the first Friday lunch in The Old Church Rooms, senior residents could meet friends as well as being provided with a hot meal, cooked by volunteers.  Those who were too frail to come under their own steam were picked up by volunteer drivers.  Every special occasion has been celebrated Birthdays, Jubilees, Valentine’s Day, Easter, Royal Weddings, Christmas and many, many more.

Over the years the Scheme expanded to cover Danescourt and when the boundaries changed Gwaelod, Pentyrch and Creigiau were encompassed. The name change to Radyr and District Good Neighbours and in 1998 a second lunch club started in Pentyrch.

Over the years the main source of funding has been from Cardiff County Council with small grants from the two Community Councils in our area and from other organizations for specific events.  Long before the recession, in 2002, Cardiff Council stopped the small annual rise. (In effect a cut) In 2011 Radyr and Morganstown festival donated all money raised to Good Neighbours and so thanks to a lot of hard work from the local community our much depleted coffers were replenished. Last year the grant was cut by 10% at the last minute.  This year we have been advised that with effect from the 1st April our grant will cease completely.  Without that Grant the Scheme cannot continue.  The grant pays one part-time employee and the general costs associated with running a small office.

Over the twenty six years that the scheme has been in place hundreds of local senior residents have been helped and have enjoyed the many social events which have been organized by the scheme. The scheme has brought the youngest and oldest members of the community together enabling the senior residents to see the positive side of the young, not just the negative stereo types the media like to portray.  Volunteers have freely given thousands of hours in helping the local community and very few have claimed expenses. Without the support of the Good Neighbours organization and co-ordinator the lunch clubs coffee morning and other activities cannot continue.Sadly the Radyr diners will not be having a 21st birthday celebration.   Nearly half of the diners attending the lunch club are transported by local volunteers, for some it can be the only time they are able to leave the house.

We all appreciate that the council have to make huge financial cuts to operate effectively.  However, at a time when we are hearing that many elderly people who visit their doctor with depression are actually lonely this decision will affect many senior, local residents.  This Scheme and the one in Llanishen are the only two independent schemes and they are also the only two Good Neighbours Schemes to lose their grants, despite being the cheapest to run and this scheme being the only one that runs lunch clubs. Over the years I have been to numerous meetings where the comment has been “Oh Radyr, the rich, green, leafy suburb, they do not need any help” I cannot help but wonder if the thinking is entirely financial. While we can all acknowledge that this area of Cardiff is not deprived compared with other areas that does not mean there are no residents in real need of the type of support the scheme has provided. Not everyone in our communities is well off and some of the neediest are the most elderly and vulnerable.

Finally, a huge thank you to all of our volunteers, past and present; thank you to the current County Councillor Rod McKerlich and the committee who have worked very hard on our behalf exploring all avenues for funding; to all organizations, groups and individuals (all too numerous to mention) for the help and support which they have given us over the years and to Marion Drake who’s initial idea has helped the elderly in this small leafy suburb have a better quality of life in their autumn years for the past twenty six years.  

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 March 2014 20:50
 
DCA Comments on LDP PDF Print E-mail

The DCA has submitted a formal response commenting on the Cardiff Council Local Development Plan

You can read a copy of the comments here 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 November 2013 21:09
 
Local Development Plan Latest PDF Print E-mail

Your Danescourt Community Association has been active, making our views known concerning Cardiff Council's Local Development Plan.

The following is correspondence between Edgar Gibbs, DCA Chair and First Minister Carwyn Jones

 

From: Edgar Gibbs DCA
Sent: ‎Thursday‎, ‎31‎ ‎October‎ ‎2013 ‎13‎:‎57
To: carwyn.jones@wales.gsi.gov.uk

xx xxxxx xxxxx

Danescourt

CARDIFF

 

31-10-2013

 

 

The First Minister

 

Dear Carwyn

 

Local development plan

 

As chairman of the Danescourt Community Association, Llandaff, Cardiff, I have been charged with writing to you regarding current situation on the Local Development Plan. Members of our committee have been trying with considerable difficulty to go through the issues regarding the local development plan and how it will affect the residents of Danescourt and how we can have input into it.

 

The process and consultation can at best be described as confusing complicated and convoluted, and at worst totally unhelpful to the public and hugely inflexible, to the point it is almost a tick box exercise without enough boxes where objections can be ticked.

 

Already two years late and we have arrived at the situation where the Local Development Plan, which has still not been adopted will be meaningless, based on the fact that, at long last, the number of authorities within Wales is going to be reduced, with new proposals for boundaries being issued within the near future. This reduction in Authorities will both reduce costs and provide a stronger basis for more strategic thinking about the future for Wales.

 

Cardiff Council has at best been tardy in being so late in producing a draft document which can be sent out for consultation, as it should have been completed two years ago.

 

Realistically, continuing with the local development plan at this stage is going to waste money, when money is very tight, especially as new authorities would be required to amalgamate and update redundant existing LDPs.

 

I would refer you to the City Regions Final Report of July 2012 that stated –

The main drivers behind the city region approach are to:

·       Improve the planning system;

·       Improve connectivity; and

·        Drive investment.

The report recommends creating 2 City regions in Wales – Swansea Bay and South East Wales, which would be called Cardiff City Region – there are 22 recommendations such as 12 on Transport and 14 on Planning.

The Association would wish assurances that the content of the report has been taken into account within the preparation of the LDP.

The Association would also like assurances that the report - A Cardiff Capital Region Metro: Impact Studyhas also been taken into account both in the preparation of the LDP plus the recent planning application for 5000 houses north west of Danescourt.

The Association would like to suggest that the LDP process be halted, but there needs to be a level of planning protection as there is no land bank. Refusal of planning applications can easily be appealed and objections overruled at appeal, as there is no land bank, and consents could leave considerable transport and other problems.

 

Despite the issues regarding planning land bank and objections being overruled etc. the community association would like you to instigate a temporary hold on the local development plan process in Cardiff and I would suspect throughout all Wales as I'm sure there are other community associations, community councils, residents associations etc. also struggling considerably with the current situation.

 

To gain something positive from the situation we are in, the Community Association would suggest that you engage planning consultants and transportation consultants to take a fresh look at the current situation, and prepare a report on how best a local development plan can be progressed, taking into account the new boundaries that are going to exist and the City Regions Final Report of July 2012, and other reports.

 

I appreciate that the Assembly may not have the money necessary nor have budget to employ consultants to carry out this work, but the Association feels that if a halt was made on the LDP the money that would have been wasted on continuing with the process could be used to pay for these consultants.

 

The Association would suggest that a considerably smaller number of local authorities would give a far better more effective more efficient strategic overview whilst at the same time allowing the local people to have their input into the process. Also the Association would wish to have an simpler consultation process which would make local input more relevant.

 

The Association has written to Cardiff City Council to obtain properly considered details regarding the LDP draft proposals but has been unable to get satisfactory information.

 

The local councillor has done his very best to explain the process but the process is so obviously convoluted, confusing, inflexible, illogical and difficult for members of the public to understand that these explanations have led to more questions than answers.

 

In summary the Association would very much like you as the first minister

 

1.     To put a hold on all local development plan processes throughout Wales

2.     Give adequate protection on planning and land bank issues until the boundary and revised process is finalised and implemented

3.     To consult with community associations such as ourselves and produce a brief followed by the engagement of consultants to prepare a way forward to make a new LDP process fit for purpose and relevant to Wales.

4.     Include all relevant parties in a consultation to establish that the revised LDP process can be agreed as fit for purpose.

5.     To set out a timetable for implementation of this revised process.

6.     Give reassurances the reports mentioned above have and/or will be taken into in planning the future of our Capital, and for Wales as a country.

 

We look forward to your detailed and comprehensive response.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Edgar Gibbs BSc, CEng, MICE

Chair

 

Stewart Burgess CEng, CEnv, FICE, FCIHT, MCMI, MBA

Committee member

 

This message was followed up on the 16th of November with the following message

 

Dear Carwyn
You will recall I sent you an email regarding the Local Development Plan which you have asked Carl Sargeant AM to respond to.  The situation has now developed somewhat as it appears that in July a planning application in St Fagans that was refused by Cardiff was taken to appeal. As Cardiff have not got an LDP the appeal was upheld by an Inspector..  
See paragraph 6 of the link below http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/massive-expansion--cardiff-housing-6101521

LABOUR councillors in charge of Cardiff council were tonight challenged to “stand up to their Welsh Government masters” as they approved a massive expansion of the city.

The Cardiff Deposit Local Development (LDP), adopted at today’s full council meeting, allocates land for 41,100 new homes and plans for 40,000 more jobs up to 2026.

The blueprint for growth – which includes a greenbelt of protected land north of the M4 – was backed by the ruling Labour group, despite opposition parties warning it would result in traffic gridlock and the loss of green spaces.

Opponents said the LDP process was “not fit for purpose” and called for a regional approach to planning, with the demand for housing distributed across south east Wales.

Labour said without an LDP, the council was powerless to defend itself against developers, with several planning applications for greenfield sites being approved on appeal recently.

They said the previous Liberal Democrat/Plaid Cymru administration, whose proposed LDP was rejected by a planning inspector as it did not propose any greenfield development, had “failed” the city.

Cabinet member for strategic planning Graham Hinchey said Cardiff was at a key moment in its evolution, with an increasing demand for jobs and houses.

“Elected members need to show strong leadership and grab the opportunity to shape the next chapter in the city’s development,” Heath’s Labour councillor said.

He warned not having an LDP would not stop development, adding: “All that happens is that it happens without control”.

All councils are required by Welsh Government to produce “sound” LDPs based on evidence.

Based on population growth forecasts, Cardiff is planning for 41,100 homes, including 14,000 on greenfield sites west of Pentrebane (5,000 homes), either side of Pontprennau (5,800) and south of Creigiau (2,650).

Conservative group leader David Walker said: “It’s not a council-led plan, it’s driven by the Welsh Government and they know little about the city.”

The Lisvane councillor said the LDP did not take into account the wider region and that  was “totally unrealistic” and would be looked back on “with embarrassment”.

He challenged the Labour administration to negotiate a more strategic plan with their “Welsh Government masters”, adding: “It’s time we stood up to the Welsh Government.”

Fairwater’s Plaid Cymru councillor Neil McEvoy said: “Every Labour councillor is voting to destroy the green lungs of our city.

“This is the beginning of the end of the city that we know and love, Cardiff. It’s also the beginning of the end of our communities.”

Council deputy leader Ralph Cook said the issue had not sparked protests, saying Labour’s transparent approach had allowed residents to understand the need to provide for the future.

“Cardiff is the economic dynamo of the region. Cardiff is a desirable place to live and there is pent-up demand for housing. It is incumbent for the city’s fathers and mothers to provide for that need,” he said.

Other opposition councillors spoke to criticise the lack of specific detail on transport and infrastructure that would be needed for the new suburbs.

Coun Hinchey told them plans for a tram system were already being developed, but added: “Without the houses where is the money going to come from? We need those houses to build the infrastructure – it’s chicken and egg.”

The deposit LDP was approved just hours before the Business Minister Edwina Hart outlined her plan to the 10 council leaders in south east Wales to create a Cardiff Capital Region.

As reported yesterdayTHURS, it’s understood a new body – comprised of representatives of local authorities, the private sector and universities – will be created to shape the region’s planning, economic and transport priorities.

But Creigiau and St Fagans’ Tory councillor Graham Thomas said: “Unfortunately for Cardiff it’s a case of closing the stable door after the horse has bolted. It’s going to come too late to stop Cardiff being overdeveloped.”

 

An application for 48 houses adjacent to Danescourt which was refused is now going to appeal.  It is fairly obvious that the Developer will get permission again as Cardiff have no LDP.

This is exactly the scenario we were concerned about and why we asked for protection. Please will you make this issue a matter of urgency.  Will you also ensure Carl Sargeant responds to this addition to my earlier email within the original timescale. 
Your urgent action is required.
Yours sincerely

Edgar Gibbs  Chair of Danescourt Comunity Association

 

and this reply has been received from Carwyn Jones

Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 November 2013 21:09
 
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