Less haste, more speed for Llanbedr?

Planning application for new road at Llanbedr to be presented back to Planning Committee

An application for planning permission to construct a new road in Llanbedr near Harlech will be presented back to the Snowdonia National Park Authority’s Planning Committee following an application for a Judicial Review.

The application for a Judicial Review was submitted by an affected landowner to the decision of the Snowdonia National Park Authority’s Planning Committee to grant a new 1.5km road at Llanbedr. The case for the Judicial Review is made on the basis that due process was not fully complied with in relation to the Habitat Regulations Assessment (HRA), specifically in regard to assessing the impact on a nearby Special Area of Conservation, which is a statutory designation.

The National Park Authority has decided not to contest the case, and has agreed to the quashing of the planning permission by the Court. Following the disposal of the case by the Court, the planning application is to be redetermined by the National Park Authority.

Gwynedd Council’s  original planning application was submitted in a hurry and lacked some essential documents.  That submission reflected Welsh Government’s haste to show ‘progress’ towards infrastructure improvements in support of its efforts to attract the ‘UK Spaceport’ to Llanbedr airfield.  That spaceport development has since been awarded to the A’Mhoine peninsula in Sutherland.  With that change of circumstances, we will be scrutinising the application when it returns.  We’ll be asking whether it makes sense in terms of the needs of local people, the natural environment and the National Park landscape.  We note, for example, that Welsh Government has allocated ‘Active Travel’ funding for the Llanbedr bypass development with no provision for cyclists or pedestrians.

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