STOP PRESS – Port Meadow – Report Withdrawn

Adrian Arbib

10th September 2013

Adrian Arbib

In a last minute move, Oxford City Council yesterday evening pulled the consideration of the controversial Roger Dudman Way development from tonight’s West Area Planning Committee.

The public deserves to know why!

Councillors had been due to consider an Officers’ report which recommended signing off all outstanding conditions on the development. However, the report was withdrawn following legal advice. An email from Michael Crofton-Briggs, Head of City Development, announced the move and said this was done ‘to enable a further screening opinion to be undertaken in accordance with the applicable regulations’.

Helen Marshall, Director, CPRE Oxfordshire said: “To withdraw a report like this is most unusual and so far, the reasons given are very vague. This is a matter of huge public interest and the people of Oxford have a right to know what exactly is going on. Which planning condition is it that is under question, what are the ‘applicable regulations’ and what is the ‘screening opinion’ required?

“Whatever the details, we hope Officers will use this opportunity to give far closer scrutiny to the landscaping and contamination conditions. There are still no meaningful mitigation proposals on the table and there are some serious outstanding public health issues such as why the construction management plan allowed for potentially contaminated soil to be used as part of the foundations of the buildings.

“The impact of this decision on the University is potentially huge, as they were hoping to move students in later this month. Maybe this will finally force them to make more meaningful offers around mitigation.”

For further info see our Save Port Meadow campaign page