Incomplete housing estates a county-wide problem

Jonathan Edwards calls for a review of planning application process

Jonathan Edwards MP with County Councillor Alun Davies in Penybanc

Jonathan Edwards MP with County Councillor Alun Davies in Penybanc

Local Member of Parliament, Jonathan Edwards, has spoken of his summer activities in visiting a number of recently built housing estates and speaking to residents who live without some of the most basic council services.

In June this year, Jonathan Edwards conducted street surgeries in housing estates which have not had their roads adopted by the local authority.  Many of these estates have no street lighting, unfinished pavements and roads finished to only a ‘base course level’ meaning they have not been surfaced with tarmac.

As a result of unadopted roads, the roads and walkways are dangerous to walk on, and householders are denied the most basic of council services such as refuse collection.

Having collected a database of incomplete housing estates, Jonathan Edwards took his concern to the Welsh Government.  In its response, the Welsh Government Minister for Housing and Regeneration outlined the range of powers available to the local planning authority in Carmarthenshire County Council.  Following his correspondence with the county council Jonathan Edwards has said a full scale review is needed of how such applications are approved to stop incomplete housing developments from occurring.

Jonathan Edwards MP said:

“Understandably the local council will not pay to bring these housing estates, their roads and pavements up to the required condition when this work should have been done by the developer in the first place.

“An adoption agreement and/or bond scheme should be in place for every single development.  I don’t think it is right that developers are awarded planning permission without a cast-iron guarantee that the development will be completed.

“As a result of these incomplete estates the roads and pavements are uneven, iron works are too high, holes exist where street lights should be placed and each household has to carry its refuse to the top of the street because the council vans won’t drive on the road.

“Residents in these housing estates have paid substantial sums of money for their properties but do not enjoy the most basic of home comforts.  Those with children often worry about the safety of their children playing on their own street.

“I believe we need a full scale review of how such developments are awarded planning permission without a guarantee that they will be completed.  We also need a comprehensive response as to how the existing estates can be finished – simply passing the buck is not good enough.”

ENDS

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