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The Colchester Borough Council's local plan for future developmenton Mersea Island may fit into present blank spaces close to existinghousingand use "available" land convenient to developers.
However, it raises two questions:
a. In about 2030,2045 and 2060 what will be the next "developments?" Eventually there will be precious little land left for CBC to force through.
b. There are far too many " infrastructure" constraints to allow further willy-nilly increases of the island's
population. These are listed and discussed below. 350 houses equates to about 1000 souls butinthe summer,and maybe throughout the year,the population of the island increases dramatically. Where the
infrastructure is hard pressed to cope today,it will not cope with a 350 house expansion.
Roads: Dawes Lane will become the preferred route on and off the island for the new developments. It is far too narrow atthe moment (Ihave already had mywingmirror clipped and broken whilst driving along it).
The Strood roadis notpassable 24 hours/day at SpringTides. Pot-holes will be more of a problem than they are now!
Schools:The Primary School will need to expand for the extra population.
M edical: The Doctor's surgeryis hard pressed to cope atthe moment Plans to move to a bigger premises have beeninthe air for 18 years. GP's are inshort supply and the NHSis short of money.
Water and Sewage:The area around Wellhouse Green and East Road (SeaView Avenue,to Dawes lane),is,reputedly prone to sewage back-ups. How will it be able to cope with 350 more houses?
Emerncy Less thantwo and a half miles across the water lies Bradwell decommissioned nuclear power station. The intermediate nuclear waste is and will be stored there for years to come. Though there is no risk of explosion,contamination risk will always be present The Chinese bid for a super reactor is all in the air. Assumingit goes ahead, is it sensible to plan on the expansion of the population of anisland with only one access road, which submerges athigh tide.
I am aware that CBC planners have little choice but to "plan" on expansion and that to do so for 15 years ahead can produce alarming results. However, the obstacles I have listed above are, nevertheless, real. It would be good for these to be dealt with BEFORE : further development is allowed to go ahead rather having to manage as they occur. That is what I call Planning
John H Dinnin