Brent councillors send objection letter about Welsh Harp plans to Barnet Council
- Credit: Archant
Controversial proposals sparks anger from residents in both boroughs
Ten Brent councillors have submitted a collective letter to Barnet Council objecting to development plans on the Welsh Harp reservoir.
The written objection was sent to a senior planning officer at the town hall as part of their battle to stop more than 2,000 homes being built near the nature reserve.
The plans, submitted by Barratt Metropolitan LLP, has angered residents in both Brent and Barnet who fear the addition of the new homes, some of which could be more than 20 stories high, will spoil the landscape of the reservoir.
The letter signed by Cllr Muhammed Butt, leader of the council, and the nine other councillors on the executive was sent to Thomas Wyld.
It states: “We have serious concerns that the height and density of the proposed development will have a devastating impact in the Welsh Harp’s rare ecology including the extensive areas of marshland that have earned the area the status of Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).
“The Welsh Harp is the only SSSI in Barnet or Brent and we believe that the maintenance of this status must be a primary consideration when considering any planning application in the area.
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“We are also concerned that the local infrastructure is not designed to cope with such a large influx of residents and the substantial volume of extra traffic could bring the very narrow and picturesque Cool Oak Lane to a daily standstill.”
The councillors also added that planning officers in Brent had identified issues around parking capacity and the negative impact additional footfall would have on the wildlife at the nature reserve.
A petition signed by more than 850 Brent residents was presented to Barnet Council in May.
The council will consider the planning application in the next few weeks.
A Barratt Metropolitan spokesman previously told the Times they shared residents’ wishes to protect the environment and would create a “green buffer” along the entire length of the eastern shore of the reservoir.
He added: “A full environmental assessment - which looks at the potential impact the development could have on views, wildlife, recreation and traffic - has now been submitted to Barnet Council.”