Agenda item - BH2021/04068 - Saxon Works, Land to the rear of 303-305 Portland Road, Hove - Full Planning

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Agenda item

BH2021/04068 - Saxon Works, Land to the rear of 303-305 Portland Road, Hove - Full Planning


1.       The Planning Manager introduced the application to the committee.




2.       Ward Councillor Sankey considered the principle of development was acceptable, however, this was an extensive overdevelopment of the site. The proposals, on elevated land, overlook neighbours’ gardens resulting in loss of privacy. The development will result in more vehicles in the area, where there have been numerous accidents. There is an absence of affordable housing. The financial viability assessment states the development is not viable, however if the development were car free, the underground car park would not be needed. Works for seven days a week would not be good.


3.       Stuart Duncan, objecting to the application, stated they represented their family and other residents. They had a number of concerns regarding the development: the commercial building will be hard up to the boundary with house at 305 Portland Road and daylight will be affected with a 57% loss of light to windows including kitchen and dining room; Martello Lofts use land currently for parking and will need to get parking permits and this seems unfair; should be 39 parking spaces not 26 as proposed. The application is an overdevelopment of the site. Seven days construction working is not acceptable, please reduce to five.


4.       Guy Dixon addressed the committee as the agent and stated that the proposals would regenerate a brown field site and there was a housing need under the 5 year land supply. The application has undergone many amendments reducing the scale and moving away from neighbours. The daylight and sunlight assessments found the development acceptable. The increase in employment floor space will result in more jobs. The financial viability assessment concludes the development is currently unable to support the provision of affordable housing. The development includes underground parking, eco boxes and is sustainable, and will support local jobs. The committee were requested to support the application.


5.       The Planning Manager clarified the construction times would be defined by condition under the demolition plan and construction plan. Any issues on neighbouring sites and the behaviour of the developer are not to be considered by the committee.


Answers to Committee Member Questions


6.       Councillor Yates was informed that the outline planning permission had not been granted for the larger development on Portland Road, as the S106 agreement had not been agreed.


7.       Councillor Moonan was informed by the case officer that there was no parking for the commercial building as the site was a sustainable location. The commercial space would not have any permitted development rights and would need planning permission to change to housing as it is conditioned to be used for commercial. The development is 5.6m from the neighbouring property boundary and 18.5m from the windows of the property.


8.       Councillor Ebel was informed that the condition 3 restricted certain elements of use class E: Condition 3 restricts the commercial areas to office use only.


9.       Councillor Shanks was informed that the ‘Late Stage Review’ will take place once the flats are being sold. The case officer confirmed that there would be parking for retail units and there was existing parking on the industrial estate. It was considered there would be minimum trips to the site and this could be covered by existing on street parking areas.


10.      Councillor Theobald was informed by the agent that the current parking on the land to be developed was informal.




11.      Councillor Moonan stated they were against the application, with concerns regarding parking as people will drive to the commercial spaces. The frontage onto Olive Road overlooks the existing properties. The proposals are an overdevelopment of the site. The councillor requested a more proportionate development.


12.      Councillor Theobald considered the loss of employment space an issue, as was the lack of affordable housing. The councillor considered the proposals would be higher than others in the area and very dense. The proposals were of a poor design, and it was a shame to loss the existing trees. Parking was also a concern. The councillor stated they were against the application.


13.      Councillor Ebel was considered at the lack of affordable housing; however, they noted the proposals were policy compliant and therefore supported the application as the applicant would win at appeal.


14.      Councillor Yates considered the transport issues were not significant as the site would be accessible by sustainable transport. The parking for the office use was not good and there was no affordable housing. The councillor considered looking at the larger site at this location would be better. The councillor was against the application.


15.      Councillor Janio considered the council would lose at appeal and they did not have any concerns regarding affordable housing. The councillor supported the application.


16.      Councillor Littman noted a number of issues had been raised and considered the application to be better than the existing one on this constrained site.




17.      A vote was taken, and by 2 to 4 against, with 2 abstentions, the committee voted against the officer recommendation.


18.      A motion to refuse the application was proposed by Councillor Moonan and seconded by Councillor Yates.


19.      A recorded vote was taken, and Councillors Moonan, Shanks, Theobald, Yates and Littman voted for the refusal. Councillors Ebel and Janio voted against the refusal and Councillor Hills abstained.


20.      RESOLVED: The application be refused for the following reasons:


1) The proposal, as a result of its scale, bulk, proximity to the site boundaries and location of balconies on the residential building, would result in an overbearing impact, overlooking and loss of privacy to the Olive Road residential properties. This is contrary to policy DM20 of the Brighton & Hove City Plan Part Two.


2) The scale, bulk, and height of the proposed residential building would be out of keeping with the pattern and scale of the surrounding area. The number of proposed units and the scale of the development represents an overdevelopment of the site. This is contrary to policies CP12 and CP14 of the Brighton & Hove City Plan Part One and DM18 and DM19 of the Brighton & Hove City Plan Part Two, and SPD17:

Urban Design Framework.

Supporting documents:


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