UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED that the Planning Committee is minded to approve the following application, subject to resolution of the queries raised by NRW regarding the Flood Consequence Assessment, further correspondence from the Welsh Government regarding the Article 18 Direction, and the conditions detailed within the report/addendum of the Head of Planning:
S/36948 – Wellness and Life Science Development including: Community Health Hub (Institute of Life Science, Wellness Education Centre and Clinical Delivery Centre) of up to 16,500 sqm (Use Classes; D1 Non-Residential Institution, B1 (B) Business Research and Development, and C2 Residential Institution). Life Science Business Centre (office space in the Research and Development Sector) of up to 10,000 sqm (Use Class B1 (B) Business Research and Development and B2 Light Industrial). Wellness Hub (visitor centre and corporate, community, leisure and sporting facilities) of up to 11,000 sqm (Use Class D2 Assembly and Leisure). Assisted living (nursing care, residential care, extra care housing and clinical rehabilitation facilities) of up to 370 beds/units and 7,500 sqm (Use Classes; C2 Residential Institution, C3 (A) and C3 (B) Residential). Associated outdoor recreation area, leisure and therapy spaces; landscaping and public realm; energy and utilities infrastructure; access and parking on land at Delta Lakes, Llanelli at Llanelli Wellness And Life Science Village, Land At Delta Lakes, Llanelli.
The Head of Planning advised that since the publication of the agenda and addendum a letter had been received from the Welsh Government. The letter noted that Welsh Ministers had been asked to call in the application and to consider determining the application themselves. The letter therefore directed the Local Planning Authority [as per Article 18 of the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) (Wales) Order 2012] not to grant the planning application prior to the authorisation of the Welsh Ministers. The letter stated that this Direction prevented the Council only from granting the planning application. It did not prevent the Authority and the Planning Committee from continuing to process and to consult on the application or from refusing the planning application. The Head of Planning advised that the Local Planning Authority was still awaiting the Welsh Ministers’ decision as to whether or not to call in the application for their own determination. If the Committee was minded to go along with the recommendations set out in the report and addendum, it would be making a decision today that it was minded to approve the application pending the decision regarding the call in.
A representation was received objecting to the proposed development which reiterated the points detailed within the Head of Planning’s written report and included the following:
· Flooding assessment did not fully take into consideration the potential effects of climate change. The site was susceptible to flooding from huge tidal surges caused by Atlantic hurricanes, especially as such hurricanes had become more frequent in recent years. Rising sea levels were likely to exacerbate flooding risks in the future. NRW concerns about the longevity of the site had not been answered sufficiently.
· Under Welsh Water’s Llanelli RainScape scheme rainwater would be pumped into the lake on the site after any incident of rain. The report had not included any hydrology assessments relating to the impact of this scheme.
· Widening the access to Sandy Roundabout junction, which lay on one of the planned key routes for visitors from Burry Port, Pembrey and Carmarthen to the site, was considered an insufficient solution to the expected traffic increase at this major transport bottleneck. Resulting concerns about air pollution and health risks had not been adequately addressed.
The applicant’s agent and the Development Management Officer responded to the issues raised by the objector.