Sally Panayi (Senior Planning Officer) provided a summary of the application, stating that Abbey Green Gardens was a triangular area of grassed open space bordered by mature trees and surrounded by roads on all sides. The application sought consent for the installation of a shared cycleway/footpath to run through Abbey Green Gardens. She advised that:
· The pathway would replace the existing pedestrian and cycling facilities on Corporation Street.
· It would comprise an asphalt surface raised to approximately 300mm above the existing ground level.
· The proposed installation would be a non-dig construction, ensuring that the roots of trees located close by would not be disturbed.
· Informal planting areas would be provided either side of the pathway. Seven new trees would be planted along the route.
· It was not proposed to remove any of the mature trees located to the west of the path.
· Six lighting columns would be installed along the route of the pathway.
· Residents of the 84 neighbouring properties had been consulted. One objection had been received from a resident querying the need for a pathway in this location. The objection also referred to a covenant on the land which could preclude any work being undertaken on the Green. However, this had been resolved.
· No objection had been raised by WCC Ecology; however, provision of a Construction and Environmental Management Plan and a Landscape and Ecological Management Plan was recommended prior to commencement of the works.
· No objection had been raised by the Lead Local Flood Authority subject to a planning pre-commencement condition for the approval in writing of a detailed Surface Water Drainage Scheme.
· The red line area did not extend beyond the boundary of Abbey Green Gardens. However, the application provided details of the junctions to the north and south of the site. A Road Safety Audit had been instigated to overcome concerns raised during initial consultation with WCC Highways. Amendments had been made, leading to withdrawal of the Highways objection.
· The application accorded with the policies of the Local Plan and would support delivery of improved cycling infrastructure.
· Subject to the conditions outlined within the report, the recommendation to the Committee was for approval.
In response to Councillor Warwick, Sally Panayi advised that the option to locate the path on the side of Abbey Green Gardens adjacent to Corporation Street had been ruled out in anticipation of potential changes to the highway layout at the junction of Corporation Street and the A444 to improve the flow of traffic.
Dan Cresswell (Team Leader – Project and Programme Management) advised that changes to the layout of Corporation Street were proposed as part of the wider Transforming Nuneaton scheme. He advised that non-dig construction could not be achieved on the carriageway side of Abbey Green Gardens. To do so, it would be necessary to elevate the level of the existing highway and footway which was not practicable.
In response to Councillor Clarke, Sally Panayi advised that creation of the footpath was a standalone project that could be implemented ... view the full minutes text for item 3