Plans have been submitted for 38 houses and 12 flats — 18 of those marked for affordable housing — in an extension to Birch Close in Freshwater.
The application by Tallulah Estates is proposed for the greenfield site, which used to be agricultural land, at the end of the close and is said by them to ‘strike a balance’ between making efficient use of the site while fitting in ‘comfortably’ with the residential character of the area.
As part of the public consultation, however, residents have hit out at the development with the Isle of Wight Council receiving 24 objections so far.
Birch Close residents have expressed deep concerns about the ‘visual intrusion and infringement’ to their privacy should the application be approved as six windows of one of the two-storey block of flats would directly look into their gardens.
“This greenfield development will completely destroy Birch Close and no doubt the lives of the residents; I would go as far as to suggest that the devastation wrought will have a serious, direct and detrimental effect on their psychological health and general well being.”
The ‘drastic change’ has been branded as urbanisation being ‘forced’ upon residents, with some under the impression that the green space would not be built on when they bought their homes.
One said it seemed utterly immoral to give it permission with other objections citing potential pressure on the drainage system, the flooding the site is prone to, light and noise pollution as reasons the application should be rejected.
Freshwater Parish Council said it would be a major overdevelopment of the land.
With other big developments already approved, and some underway, in the Colwell area, the increase in traffic the proposed housing would bring was also deemed excessive.
Island Roads recommended the application be refused on four grounds, including inadequate vehicle access visibility for 17 of the plots, insufficient onsite pedestrian provision and a lack of green travel measures.
The highways authority said should the council approve the development, it would recommend installing double yellow lines on both Birch Close and Colwell Road, due to the issues they saw during their site inspection.
Local ecology concerns have also been raised, one through the Isle of Wight’s Badger Trust as a sett is present and badgers use the space of neighbouring properties.
Comments on the application, 21/00357/FUL, will be accepted until 6th April.