Concerns over impact of London Road 32-homes development

A computer generated image of the proposed London Road development as viewed from Orient Close, St Albans.

A computer generated image of the proposed London Road development as viewed from Orient Close, St Albans. - Credit: Oakford Homes (Bewick) Limited

Neighbours were shocked to hear about plans for 32 homes on their doorsteps through word of mouth after developers failed to notify them of the scheme.

Residents of Orient Close say they were not informed about the proposal by Oakford Homes (Bewick) Limited to build flats on the industrial estate at 222 London Road, St Albans.

The redevelopment of the site for residential use involves the conversion of Vickers House into nine apartments, the demolition of the remaining industrial buildings on the site and the erection of 23 homes.

Homeowner Susie Evershed said she and many of her neighbours were not informed about the plans even though their properties stand to be seriously impacted by this application.

"This appears to be a significant overdevelopment of the site, which sits adjacent to the conservation area of St Albans. At present, Orient Close offers a tranquil cul-de-sac estate to many families, some of whom have resided here for over 20 years since the development was first built. 

"The height of the proposed development - which directly affects my views from the front and back of my property - is much greater than the existing building.

"The plans also appear to be a gross invasion of privacy for many residents whose properties directly face the proposed dwellings. This will adversely affect quality of life and value of properties for many of our friends and neighbours. Yet only two of these houses are listed as being officially notified of the proposed changes which is utterly outrageous."

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She is also concerned about the impact on traffic and pedestrian safety in London Road with so many additional vehicles accessing the site, and the impact on local amenities and infrastructure.

Susie added: "I am confident that a suitable plan could be developed for the site in question, but the proposals as drafted demonstrate a complete lack of sympathy or consideration for local residents, placing housebuilder profit above local residents' lives."

St Albans Civic Society has objected to the plans on access grounds, insisting the proposed vehicular access poses a hazardous entry onto the busy London Road.

You can view the plans on the district council's website using reference 5/2021/1972. A decision on the scheme is due by October 25.