Royal Docks concrete facility will stay says council despite objections
PUBLISHED: 18:00 19 January 2017 | UPDATED: 15:22 20 January 2017
A decision to grant extended planning permission for a concrete batching facility has “disappointed” residents living 500 metres away.
Corbyn Construction Ltd will continue to batch and transport concrete at its warehouse on Royal Albert Island in the Docklands until July 2018, not July 2019 as its owners had requested.
Following this, it will need to reapply for planning permission.
The earlier time frame was one condition laid out by voting councillors, who also requested a three-month monitoring period of the firm’s operations during a meeting on Tuesday evening.
Cllr Ian Corbett, however, declared Corbyn should not be facing an earlier deadline, saying “you can’t run a business on that basis”. He voted against the motion along with Cllr Lester Hudson.
Fishguard Way resident Gareth Evans, who lodged an objection to councillors, said he and other residents would “continue to fight” the decision.
Speaking at the meeting, he said residents were “having to cover our noses because every hour of every day there are trucks from Corbyn there, making it hard to breathe”.
Corbyn submitted a retrospective planning proposal on November 4. It has since received 67 objections.
“Putting a concrete batch next to residents is always going to be difficult but not even bothering to find out what the impact is going to be is troubling,” said planning consultant, Andrew Cann, of Planning Direct.
Speaking at the meeting on behalf of an objector, he referenced high levels of dust and noise pollution.
Other concerns raised referenced excess trucks on the roads around the site.
However, Corbyn owner James Molloy defended the business’ record – which was criticised by the island’s marina owners and some nearby residents in December 2015 – by saying industry standards were being abided by.
The 500-person employer also said “dust amelioration” and noise reduction plans had been submitted to the council while concrete production had a “limited shelf-life” of 40 minutes, meaning projects had to be “focused heavily in the borough”.
“We believe we are doing all that we can,” he said, adding: “If we were importing concrete from another borough, it would just mean more traffic coming in from other boroughs.”
My Molloy said the concrete batching takes place in an enclosed room and a three-metre timber fence had already been erected.
Criticism was levied separately at the council for its failure to carry out a environment impact assessment. A legal representative said the project “did not meet the criteria” needed although this was questioned by objectors.
A separate site application by Corbyn for vehicle storage was also passed at the same meeting by the Strategic Development committee.
Royal Albert Island has been designated an “enterprise zone” by the Mayor of London’s office. The land is owned by the Greater London Authority (GLA).