1. The appeal is allowed and planning permission is granted for a mixed use development comprising a maximum of 175 residential units, a maximum of 4,000m2 of employment floorspace (class B1), and open space, on land on the north side of Yarmouth Road, Blofield, Norwich, in accordance with the terms of the application, Ref 20111303, dated 31 August 2011, subject to the conditions in the attached schedule.
2. On the application form, the location of the site is given as land at Yarmouth Road, Blofield, Norwich. The site lies on the north side of Yarmouth Road, and I have identified it accordingly in the appeal details above. The main parties agreed that the proposal is more clearly described as a mixed use development comprising a maximum of 175 residential units, a maximum of 4,000m2 of employment floorspace (class B1), and open space, and I have considered the appeal on this basis.
3. The planning application was submitted in outline form, with all matters of detail reserved for future consideration. Two illustrative plans were submitted with the application: the parameter plan shows a broad sub-division of the site into an employment area, open space and a residential area, and the indicative masterplan shows a possible form of layout.
4. A planning obligation in the form of an agreement was submitted at the inquiry (Document O6). Its provisions concern open space, education and library contributions, affordable housing, travel plans and bonds, and land transfers concerning the informal open space.
5. I consider that the main issues in this appeal are:
(i) Whether the housing component of the proposal would be appropriate and sustainable, having regard to policies for residential development.
(ii) Whether the employment floorspace component of the proposal would be appropriate and sustainable, having regard to policies for employment development.
(iii) Whether the proposal would be premature, having regard to the preparation of the Site Allocations Development Plan Document (DPD).
(iv) The effect on the living conditions of residents on the northern fringe of the development, with regard to noise mitigation measures.
(v) Whether any harm arising from the proposal would be outweighed by other considerations.
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