Toad’s Hole Valley FAQs

 

THE APPLICATION

Why 880 homes?

In 2017 Brighton & Hove City Council created detailed plans for Toad’s Hole Valley, through their Supplementary Planning Document. The Council determined that there should be a minimum of 50 to 70 homes per hectare on the site. With 16.5 hectares of land for housing, between 825 and 1,155 can be built at Toad’s Hole Valley. The application seeks to build up to 880 homes, ensuring there is plenty of space of accessible green open space.

Why develop this site, why not focus on the development of brownfield sites in Brighton and Hove?

Toad’s Hole Valley has been identified by the Council as a prime site for a significant development. There is a large need for new homes in Brighton and Hove. The Council is aiming to deliver at least 13,200 new homes between 2010 and 2030, which is roughly 660 new homes each year.  Development at Toad’s Hole Valley will deliver over one year’s housing supply on one site, with supporting infrastructure. Attempting to redevelop smaller brownfield sites would not be able to provide the same level of vital housing for the area.

Why is Court Farm not part of the proposed development?

Court Farm is in different ownership to the rest of the site. This land received planning permission in 2017 for it’s own redevelopment.

TRAFFIC, PARKING AND SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT

How will more accesses and a lower speed limit help?

Neighbouring roads have multiple access points and cope with similar volumes of traffic, which encourages drivers to adapt their driving style to suit the environment. The purpose of increasing the number of accesses and lowering the speed is to change the nature of the road to suit a more residential area in keeping with Council officer suggestions.

How will the new junctions improve the road?

The new signalised junctions will accommodate both existing and additional traffic. By providing a signal junction towards the south of the site the flow of vehicles will be better managed, the current queues along Goldstone Crescent would be reduced.

Why can’t there be access from the roundabout at the top of King George VI?

Access from the roundabout would be required to go through Court Farm, which is in different ownership to the rest of the site. This land received planning permission in 2017 for it’s own redevelopment.

Why can’t there be access from the A27?

Access to Toad’s Hole Valley from the A27 presents a number of significant challenges. The topography of the area means the A27 runs at a high level upon a steep bank on the northern boundary of the site. To include a suitable access road from the A27 to Toad’s Hole Valley would be costly and require a substantial amount of space, which could be better utilised.

Won’t traffic just queue down the hill at peak times?

Capacity studies have been undertaken on the majority of junctions within the area, the new signals have been designed with additional capacity with this in mind. These proposed changes will be subject to checks by the Council in order to meet their requirements.

Are you just looking at this road or the wider network?

The proposals take into account the wider network. As part of the proposals the A27 with the A293, Hangleton Road and the A23, together with numerous junctions within the local area, were considered during the formulation of the plans.

Why will changing King George VI to a single carriageway help congestion?

King George VI Ave is not a dual carriageway, it is a single carriageway with a lane to allow slower vehicles to be passed, especially HGVs, for only two thirds of the road. As the character of the road changes to fit within a residential area, with a lower speed limit and less HGVs, this additional lane is not needed.

How many parking spaces will be provided?

To ensure there is no overspill to neighbouring residential streets, sufficient car parking will be provided, as required by the Council. As part of ongoing discussions with the Council, the applicant is keen to agree additional parking provision for the larger family-sized homes.

What route will the number 21 bus take?

The number 21 bus will enter the site from King George VI Drive, across King George VI Ave via a bus only access on the Drive, it would then loop around the site, where it will lay over before returning to King George VI Drive to continue the existing route. The existing bus route beyond Toad’s Hole Valley will remain the same.

Will the bus be more frequent?

The applicant has met with the operator about running the service longer and more frequently. As part of the proposals, a financial contribution will be given to the Council for investment in areas such as public transport.

THE PROPOSALS

Will there be medical facilities included within the plans?

The proposals will provide space for a new doctors surgery.

What does “managing” the Site of Nature Conservation Interest (SNCI) mean?

Currently the SNCI is “unmanaged”, meaning it is currently overgrown, inaccessible and misused. St Congar’s proposals include managing the SNCI, meaning the creation of new pedestrian and cycle paths, opening up and maintaining areas of chalk grassland, the restoration and maintenance of the dew pond, and other methods to increase the diversity of habitats to benefit as many species as possible.

Will there be a school included as part of the proposals?

After consultation, Brighton and Hove Council believe it will be necessary to include a secondary school within Toad’s Hole Valley, as per the City Plan. Therefore, the applicant will be providing 5 hectares for a secondary school to meet the local requirements of Brighton and Hove.

The development will put too much pressure on local infrastructure – why should it go ahead?

As part of the proposals the applicant will be giving a financial contribution to the Council through the Section 106 Agreement which will allow the Council to continue to invest in local services to cope with the increased amount of people using them. In addition, the proposals include a provision for a space for community use.

How will wildlife move around the development?

The Masterplan has been designed to retain a core wildlife corridor at least 10-15m (33-50ft) wide that wraps around the eastern and northern boundaries of the site, and connects directly into the SNCI. This will allow wildlife to freely move in and out of the site along the A27 embankment, which is the key means of dispersal for species such as Slow-worm, Common Lizard and Hazel Dormice.

Within the developed area, several wide green corridors run both north/south and east/west, all connecting back into the A27 embankment and the SNCI. These will include tree clumps and scrub as well as areas of longer grass, to provide cover for wildlife.

Garden and boundary fences will be designed to allow wildlife such as Hedgehogs to pass through.

How will wildlife be protected during construction?  

Construction areas will be securely fenced off with temporary fencing at all times to prevent larger animals from entering construction areas, and to prevent accidental damage to retained habitats. Excavations will be covered at night. Best practice measures will be followed in order to prevent pollution, as well as excessive dust, noise, vibrations and lighting.

Vegetation clearance will be undertaken in stages and timed to avoid sensitive periods for wildlife, such as nesting and hibernation seasons. All vegetation clearance will be directed and supervised by an experienced ecologist, and site workers will be fully briefed on the wildlife interest of the site and the protection measures that are in place.

Smaller animals, such as Slow-worm and Common Lizard, will be captured over a period of months prior to clearance, and released into suitable habitat on or off site. Special exclusion fencing will be installed to prevent animals from re-entering the construction area.

Construction will also be phased in such a way as to ensure that undisturbed habitat remains available for wildlife at all times, including corridors connected to the SNCI and A27 embankment.

Will there be a greater flood risk?

No, any surface water runoff will be managed by attenuation and controlled discharge directly into the ground (a site investigation has confirmed that the site geology makes the site suitable for this method). A series of basins/ponds, swales, soakaways and areas of permeable paving will be used to control surface water flows, they will also act as a buffer to store water during periods of high rainfall, then discharge rainwater to the ground.