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The development proposal envisages an additional 300 dwellings, which on average would suggest a population increase of some 1000+ persons or around 15% of the existing permanent population of the island. Average car ownership per household will be a minimum of 1-2 cars per household, or another 600 car movements per day. These households are likely to mainly work off the island, so another 600 cars per day using the Strood crossing at peak times. To reach the Strood crossing from West Mersea, where the 300 homes are proposed these cars will have to either use East Road/Colchester road junction, which is already an accident balck spot, or Dawes Lane, which is presently totally unsuitable for this additional level of traffic.
Whilst accepting that the capacity of the West Mersea Sewage Treatment Plant is nominally sufficient for this additional housing, the planning permissions for this plant set a limit on the amount of effluent which can be discharged into the sea. If the discharge is not increased, then additional tankerage will be required to remove the increase in sludge sediments generated. At present the only vehicle access to the Treatment Plant is via Cross Lane, a residential area which is totally unsuitable for passage of 44-ton tanker vehicles. When the Treatment Plant planning was passed in 1995 vehicles of this size were not in use on UK roads and could not have been anticipated for passing through a residential area such as Cross Lane. By agreement with Anglian Water the number of suc vehicle movements has been restricted to 5 per week and any increase would be vehemently opposed by the Cross Lane residents, both on grounds of amenity disruption and basic safety considerations. After Cross Lane the tanker vehicles have to negotiate a restrictive 90 deg narrow corner before continuing down a narrow bridle track used, inter alia, by pedestrians, horses, and children on bicycles. For all of these reasons any increase in traffic to ad from the Treatment Plant generated by the proposed housing development requirements would require an alternative access route to be constructed.
These infrastructure objections are quite apart from objections which I am sure will be well-rehearsed elswhere regarding the inability of local schools, medical, shopping, and roads generlly to cope with such an increase in population and traffic.
To suggest that an increase of this proportion in the island population is "sustainable" is quite insupportable.