Public meeting will tackle fears over QinetiQ development proposals

Malvern Town Councillor, Martin Lawrence outside the rear entrance to QinetiQ on Longbridge Road, Malvern. Mr Lawrence is calling for a public meeting to discuss the effects of building on the land. 3514684401. Picture by John Anyon.

The rear entrance to the QinetiQ site off Longbridge Road, Malvern. 3514684402. Picture by John Anyon.

First published in News by

PLANS to build up to 400 new homes on the site now occupied by QinetiQ will be on the agenda at a public meeting on Monday.

The meeting has been organised by Martin Lawrence, who represents the Chase ward on Malvern Town Council and is concerned about the impact of the proposed development.

The technology company, one of the largest employers in the Malvern area, hopes to develop a substantial part of its site off St Andrew's Road.

In July, QinetiQ held a one-day public exhibition at Poolbrook Village Hall outlining its proposals. In recent years it has reduced the amount of its site that its buildings occupy.

Cllr Lawrence said: "I am concerned at the potential impact upon the area of such a high concentration of new properties at that central location.

"Whilst we desperate need housing, 400 homes equates to over 800 vehicles per day using the St Andrews and Longridge Road exits, particularly the latter in view of safety concerns regarding the lack of a pavement on and uphill from the bend.

"To get a better measure of residents views, I have called an open public meeting, It is hoped that a Malvern Chase Resident’s Group will be formed so that public opinion can be gauged, one way or the other. I will also start an e-petition."

Cllr Lawrence has also put in a Freedom of Information request to Worcestershire County Council asking for information about statistical data it has relating to traffic flow forecasts or predictions.

"We need the best information we can get about the traffic impact. St Andrew's Road and Court Road are busy enough now, and we need to know how the authorities plan to deal with the extra traffic."

A QinetiQ spokesman said, “As part of the consultation process, we welcome all comments from the local community and will take these into account as we continue discussions with the council to address any outstanding issues.”

The meeting will be at the Octagon Community Centre, Brook Farm Drive, between 6pm and 8pm.

Comments (7)

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11:46am Sat 30 Aug 14

Coughspittle says...

Surely, this site makes more sense than many other proposed sites across the Malvern area. It's land that already has (unused) buildings upon it and therefore is not razing green belt land, meadows etc. As long as infrastructure fears (improved road, services and potentially education) are allayed then this site makes a great deal of sense to me.

QinetiQ formerly used this entrance as its main/visitor gate (prior to a great deal of the site's decline) so it has already had increased traffic flow through it...it coped back then (apart from the guy chipping golf balls at the traffic...), so I'm sure it would cope again providing the builders make any necessary improvements to the junctions etc.
Surely, this site makes more sense than many other proposed sites across the Malvern area. It's land that already has (unused) buildings upon it and therefore is not razing green belt land, meadows etc. As long as infrastructure fears (improved road, services and potentially education) are allayed then this site makes a great deal of sense to me. QinetiQ formerly used this entrance as its main/visitor gate (prior to a great deal of the site's decline) so it has already had increased traffic flow through it...it coped back then (apart from the guy chipping golf balls at the traffic...), so I'm sure it would cope again providing the builders make any necessary improvements to the junctions etc. Coughspittle
  • Score: 8

12:08pm Sat 30 Aug 14

Casmal says...

Ah, but that's exactly the point: "as long as infrastructure fears are allayed...." I agree that the site itself makes sense, but the area around cannot cope with another 400 houses and the people and the cars it brings with it. St. Andrews Road and New Court Road are already busy, as is Barnards Green. There is no scope for enlarging any of these roads to cope with the extra traffic, which I suspect, will be greater than traffic generated by the staff prior to the site's decline. Parking in The Green would become impossible.

It is not realistic to point to public transport as a way of relieving such issues, because people just don't use it that much, plus public transport is being cut!

And where do you build the extra surgeries for doctors, dentists etc? And school places? Hopsital admissions?

They are similar arguments to The Newland development. Council Leaders refused to look at infrastructure issues, while assuring us they would be resolved, yet the A4440 will still only be partially dualled, with the stretch up to and including the Carrington Bridge left undualled!

Besides, I thought there was a need for more land for hi-tech industry round here?
Ah, but that's exactly the point: "as long as infrastructure fears are allayed...." I agree that the site itself makes sense, but the area around cannot cope with another 400 houses and the people and the cars it brings with it. St. Andrews Road and New Court Road are already busy, as is Barnards Green. There is no scope for enlarging any of these roads to cope with the extra traffic, which I suspect, will be greater than traffic generated by the staff prior to the site's decline. Parking in The Green would become impossible. It is not realistic to point to public transport as a way of relieving such issues, because people just don't use it that much, plus public transport is being cut! And where do you build the extra surgeries for doctors, dentists etc? And school places? Hopsital admissions? They are similar arguments to The Newland development. Council Leaders refused to look at infrastructure issues, while assuring us they would be resolved, yet the A4440 will still only be partially dualled, with the stretch up to and including the Carrington Bridge left undualled! Besides, I thought there was a need for more land for hi-tech industry round here? Casmal
  • Score: 6

4:30am Sun 31 Aug 14

Rita Jelfs says...

So what infrastructure are the developers prepared to provide to ensure that children in those houses have somewhere to play, rather than "kicking cans down the street"? Or do they expect them to be locked inside their back gardens out of sight? What safe bike infrastructure is the council providing for children to ride their bikes to school, etc? The developers have a social responsibility to put something back into the community, if they're getting a financial benefit out of it. If the country is to be paved with houses then there has to be a social return to the next generation surely?
So what infrastructure are the developers prepared to provide to ensure that children in those houses have somewhere to play, rather than "kicking cans down the street"? Or do they expect them to be locked inside their back gardens out of sight? What safe bike infrastructure is the council providing for children to ride their bikes to school, etc? The developers have a social responsibility to put something back into the community, if they're getting a financial benefit out of it. If the country is to be paved with houses then there has to be a social return to the next generation surely? Rita Jelfs
  • Score: 1

8:05am Sun 31 Aug 14

green49 says...

I agree with Rita above, also watch out Worcester Tax offices thats going to have a similar fate soon.
I agree with Rita above, also watch out Worcester Tax offices thats going to have a similar fate soon. green49
  • Score: 2

10:56am Sun 31 Aug 14

liketoknow says...

I'm pretty sure it Longridge road, not Longbridge as stated.
I'm pretty sure it Longridge road, not Longbridge as stated. liketoknow
  • Score: 2

3:10pm Sun 31 Aug 14

skychip says...

Just need to know when DEFRA and the Tax Office is moving off the site and will it still be employment land as I was told by the City Council - still things have moved on since then and it will be for housing. Whittington Road will be at gridlock before too long.
Just need to know when DEFRA and the Tax Office is moving off the site and will it still be employment land as I was told by the City Council - still things have moved on since then and it will be for housing. Whittington Road will be at gridlock before too long. skychip
  • Score: 1

4:50pm Mon 1 Sep 14

Andy-Apache says...

As the original respondent said, this site is more suitable than most. I cant see there being a huge increase in traffic. At it's peak, the site employed some 1500 people, so I'm sure traffic would be broadly similar to what it was then.

And surely 400 more houses will reverse the 12% rise in prices reported elsewhere in this newspaper. (And yes, I'm being sarcastic - the housing market is an odd one, more supply doesn't often drive prices down)
As the original respondent said, this site is more suitable than most. I cant see there being a huge increase in traffic. At it's peak, the site employed some 1500 people, so I'm sure traffic would be broadly similar to what it was then. And surely 400 more houses will reverse the 12% rise in prices reported elsewhere in this newspaper. (And yes, I'm being sarcastic - the housing market is an odd one, more supply doesn't often drive prices down) Andy-Apache
  • Score: 0
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