TRESA objects to TQEC Reserved Matters application. Have your say…

University of Bristol, Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus –

Reserved Matters Application

TRESA has today registered an objection to this planning application.

Reference 19/02952/M
Address Land Next To River Cattle Market Road Bristol
Proposal Application for the approval of reserved matters for 953 bed student accommodation (Sui Generis) scheme, ground floor active uses (A1, A3, A4, A5, D1, D2 uses) and associated works pursuant to conditions 1 and 3 of outline permission 17/06459/P being details of layout, scale, appearance and landscape

TRESA object to the development.

We feel that the three proposed 12, 16 and 21 storey tower blocks do not demonstrate ‘design excellence’ in line with Part 3 of the Urban Living SPD adopted by Bristol City Council.

We agree with Bristol Civic Society’s comments that:

– the proposed buildings are anonymous and indistinguishable from many of Bristol’s speculative office blocks

– only the buildings’ height makes them ‘memorable landmarks’

– these ‘anywhere’ commercial structures do not indicate that they are part of an exciting future campus. The Temple Island buildings lack recognisable character or distinction

–  the creation of high quality buildings and places is fundamental to what the planning and development process should achieve

–  good design is a key aspect of sustainable development, creates better places in which to live and work and helps make development acceptable to communities, and that

–  being clear about design expectations, and how these will be tested, is essential for achieving this

As they point out, effective engagement between applicants, communities, local planning authorities and other interests throughout the process is also essential.  Paragraph 128 of the National Planning Policy Framework states that design quality should be considered throughout the evolution and assessment of individual proposals. Early discussion between applicants, the local planning authority and local community about the design and style of emerging schemes is important for clarifying expectations and reconciling local and commercial interests. Applicants should work closely with those affected by their proposals to evolve designs that take account of the views of the community. Applications that can demonstrate early, proactive and effective engagement with the community should be looked on more favourably.

TRESA Directors are disappointed to have to comment that notwithstanding the above, it has only been very belatedly, and in contravention of the matters in the above paragraph, that any direct consultation will have taken place between the University and TRESA.  This will not occur until September 2019.  The designs now proposed have not therefore evolved taking into account the views of the Totterdown community.  For that reason, it is our view that these designs should be looked on less favourably.

Furthermore they do not comply with the National Planning Policy Framework, nor with the Urban Living SPD, and should not be permitted.

HAVE YOUR SAY: To comment go online at https://planningonline.bristol.gov.uk/online-applications/

Deadline for comments is 8 AUGUST 2019