Initial designs for a town of more than 2,000 homes which could be built on the site of Wisley Airfield
Wildlife organisations and Highways England (HE) have expressed concerns about plans to build more than 2,000 homes at the former Wisley Airfield.
Developer Wisley Property Investments (WPI) hopes to build 2,100 homes and amenities at the former airfield.
Several organisations have submitted concerns to Guildford Borough Council (GBC) regarding the developments impact on traffic and wildlife.
HE, which is planning major upgrades of the A3 and M25 after 2020, has said the applicant has not demonstrated ‘the soundness of the application’.
In its submission to GBC, HE wrote: “In the case of the proposed development, HE is interested in the potential impact that the development might have upon the M25 and A3.
“We are concerned as to whether there would be any adverse safety implications or material increase in queues and delays on the strategic road network as a result of the development.
“Due to existing high and prolonged periods of traffic congestion at the A3, we are particularly concerned about the possibility of extra demand adding to existing queues and delays that will only increase without improvements to the network.”
The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds has raised concerns that the development would negatively impact on birds in the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area (SPA).
It said: “We consider that the mitigation measures proposed are insufficient to avoid an adverse effect on the integrity of the SPA.”
The statements adds: “In addition to our nature conservation concerns, the RSPB’s view is that the proposed development is not sustainable in planning terms.”
Surrey Wildlife Trust highlighted impact on the SPA and sites of special scientific interest (SSSI), and on the species the habitats support.
Mike Murray, who represents WPI, said: “The strategic road network, including the M25 and A3, will benefit from significant investment during the development of the airfield as part of Highways England’s planned improvements for Junction 10 and M25 Smart Motorway upgrades.
“Further enhancements to the A3 are also planned. WPI has also offered significant measures and contributions towards improving safety and reliability at Junction 10 and on the A3.”
He said the proposals will increase the area of good quality wildlife habitat on the site by around 132 acres, ‘a significant proportion of which will be in place before the first house is occupied’.
“WPI has liaised closely with Natural England on the design and maintenance proposals for this area,” he said.