Cornwall homes development at Penryn College Valley decision date

A decision is to be made over the details of a developer’s bid to build 121 homes on fields on the outskirts of Penryn.

Developer RJ Walker has applied for planning permission for houses on land at College Farm, north of the A39 Penryn Bypass and west of Hillhead Road.

His application covers all reserved matters for the scheme that also includes open space, play space, access and parking.

The scheme includes 35 per cent affordable house – 42 homes – with 25 per cent of the affordable rented units being accessible.

The application site includes a narrow strip of land south of College Hill, which is a proposed pedestrian and cycle link on to College Hill and connecting with Hillhead road.

Plans state a minimum of two parking spaces for each unit, although one space for one-bedroom apartments, with electric charging points provided.

Plans were submitted back in March, but are only now going before Cornwall Council’s planning committee this month, on September 21.

Falmouth Packet:

An aerial view of the site location

Cornwall Councillor for Penryn West, Mary May, requested that the application go before the committee rather than be decided by officers, after 218 letters of objection were received by the council.

She said: “Residents have, in very lengthy emails, objected to the reserved matters of this application. They feel that design, colour and height of dwellings on this sensitive site which will overlook the valley will have a significant impact.

“Noise, light pollution and the removal of important hedgerows will have a devastating effect on habitat.”

She has also highlighted concerns over energy consumption in light of the climate emergency and pedestrian safety on Eastwood Road.

Mrs May said that while the developer had “gone some way in addressing concerns,” she added: “Residents who live near and around the site and use the valley each day for daily exercise have major concerns on the overall significant impact on the valley’s fauna, flora and wildlife, and future accessibility.”

Conditional outline planning permission has already been granted for up to 150 residential units – including 35 per cent affordable housing – following an application in August 2017.

Read more: Homes plan for Penryn’s College Valley approved by delegated authority

Case officer Peter Bainbridge gave conditional approval, saying the proposed development formed one of the sites that Cornwall Council had allocated to meet the housing needs of Penryn up to 2030.

He said there “would be a number of benefits” including affordable housing, off-site highway improvements and “ecological enhancements”, and that while the loss of agricultural land would have a negative impact it was “not significant.”

This application is now for the specific details of the development, with a reduction to 121 homes.

However, Emily Brand said traffic had “increased so much” since outline permission was granted, and that there was far greater demand on schools and health services.

Falmouth Packet | News