Controversial plans to build 200 homes on flood prone land in Solihull Lodge will go ahead - much to the anger of hordes of local residents.
The fate of the planned housing development on land near Aqueduct Road was finally decided at last week’s planning meeting, where members agreed the proposal should be approved.
Residents living in the road and surrounding streets, whose homes flood on a regular basis, have been fighting against the plans since last year. They say more houses will only add to the flooding issues and there will also be an increase in traffic.
Councillor Howard Allen (Green, Shirley West) said the decision will come as blow for many local homeowners.
“I believe these plans have been rushed through before the council’s own local plan [LDF] for housing has been finalised,” he said.
“We know houses need to be built there but residents’ concerns have not been addressed.
“The application is premature and the best solution has not been found.”
The plans include flood alleviation measures and a second access road along Aqueduct Road.
“The second access will help,” added Coun Allen. “It means the 300 cars have two ways out and it will smooth traffic at the entrance and exit at peak rush hour.”
Paul Chambers, spokesman for SPLAT (Solihull People’s Action Team) - an action group set up to fight the plans - said he was ‘disappointed’ with the planning committee’s decision.
“Residents have been let down,” the Eversleigh Court resident said. “People are selling up and moving because of this new development. We do not feel we have been listened to.”
The planning officer’s report states that the two, three and four bedroom home development “provides a good mix of dwellings to serve the borough’s housing needs, including an appropriate element of affordable housing on site.”
“There are no other material considerations (highways, neighbours amenity, landscape, ecology, contaminated land, drainage) that indicate that the development is not acceptable,” the report added.