Railways Works Redevelopment

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STATEMENT RE WOLVERTON WORKS - Issued on behalf of Gemini Rail Group and St. Modwen 25 March 2018

Gemini Rail Group has undertaken an extensive review of its Operations at the Wolverton Railway Works and currently the Management team is part way through a Transformation programme to enable the business to move towards a more sustainable position within the next 2 years. As part of this programme the management team has spent considerable time in evaluating the changing market conditions in the UK Rail service sector, primarily to give the owners and the Local team a level of confidence as to the type and extent of business the Works will undertake in the coming years. It is clear from this that there is a sustainable business volume that would support a future redevelopment of the site and that the volume of work, although of a differing type, is expected to be of a consistent level to underpin the Works longevity and support the investment required for site redevelopment. Gemini Rail Group have therefore commenced discussions with St. Modwen about the redevelopment of the site to provide a new facility for the business.

Gemini Rail Group are also aware of the local interest in Wolverton Railway Works regarding its future and an understanding of Gemini's intentions. Gemini are now working on a strategy to engage with the local community and will be issuing invitations to meet with stakeholders in the near future. These discussions will include the potential to house the War Memorial remembering the individuals that worked at the Wolverton Railway Works who lost their lives in WW1.
St. Modwen supports the intentions of Gemini Rail Group with regard to the War Memorial and is pleased to be engaged in discussions which will hopefully result in the delivery of new rail-related buildings for them, maintaining the historic use on this important site. This will then pave the way for the new housing development and public realm on the rest of the site. St. Modwen looks forward to working with the local community as it develops the plans for Gemini and the rest of the site through the Reserved Matters planning process.

Stratford Road Railway Works Development Site Planning Application number 15/02030/OUTIES

 

Judicial Review Update - Railway Works loses Appeal - 31.07.18

WGTC have been informed by Historic England of the High Court's decision following their appeal against the development of the Wolverton Railway works.

"The High Court has declined to quash the Council’s decision to grant planning permission for the almost complete demolition of the railway works...The judge considered that the (MK) Council was, in law, entitled to come to the conclusion that the future use of one part of the site for railway-related employment and the replacement of the rest for housing outweighed the retention of the unlisted buildings for the contribution they make to the character of Wolverton."


History of the Development

Development Control Committee decision Stratford Road Railway Works Development Site Planning Application number 15/02030/OUTIES

Planning permission was granted for a new Lidl store on the Works site next to Tesco on 21st September 2016, despite serious concerns about the extra traffic at a busy point in Stratford Road and the loss of about 15 current parking spaces to enable access to it. The discount food store itself is very welcome to our area.

The development will be delivered in phases, and works are now progressing with the food store which is due to be completed in time for opening in Easter 2018. Redevelopment of the site for Knorr-Bremse will then be followed by approximately 375 new homes, during 2018 to 2021 and an area for employment. WGTC are currently in contact with MKC regards the "Outline Planning Permission" for the site and have asked to be kept up to date with any developments at the site, which includes the plans for the bus stop, creating public access via pedestrian crossing to the store and the lowering of part of the wall to create an access point to the store. Concerns have been raised about the proposed bus stop and pedestrian crossing and discussions are underway with regards to what engagement has been carried out for this proposal, these are ongoing at present.

Inspections have been carried out to the wall and WGTC have been advised that any brickworks removed will be used to replace those that are beyond repair. The development will mean that we will also see the wall be re-pointed.

26.01.18 Permission has now been given by MK Planning to the developer to begin the breach works on the wall along Stratford Road, we are advised that this work is imminent.

02.02.18 Notification received for the relocation of the bus stop on Stratford Road and the proposed crossing "Planning permission was granted for the Lidl supermarket development scheme off Stratford Road, Wolverton on 21stSeptember 2016 and, at the recommendation of Milton Keynes Council as Highway Authority, a planning condition included requiring the developer to provide a pedestrian crossing on Stratford Road near the junction of Radcliffe Road which also requires the relocation of the existing Bus Stop. GF Tomlinson & Son have been appointed to undertake construction of the pedestrian crossing works. Technical approval and a Section 278 was granted 18th August 2017.

Permit for the construction of the new signals / relocation of the bus stop has been granted and works on site are programmed to commence on 12thFebruary 2018. The works should take approximately 5 weeks and will be carried out in stages to minimise disruption for local residents and businesses.

GF Tomlinson & Son will be providing information signs and undertake a letter drop to keep Stratford Road frontages advised (please see plan and letter attached) on Monday 05th February. Two / Three-way traffic signal control and single lane working will be required (a pedestrian phase will be included in the temporary traffic signals) to assist In the safe crossing from northern footpath to the southern footpath. Some suspension of approximately 4-5 existing parking bays will be required for the works.

Construction works will be between Monday to Friday with some Saturday working

19.03.18 - Construction of the new signalised pedestrian crossing and relocation of the existing bus stop that are in progress.

Additional improvement / repair works to the existing boundary wall were identified by the contractor and have been incorporated within the scope of this scheme. This was to minimise disruption to local residents, traffic and on safety grounds. Unfortunately, this now means that the overall program has had to be been extended to cover all the works.

Works to the wall and new signalised crossing on the north side of Stratford Road should be completed by w/e 08th April 2018. The contractor will then move to the south side on Monday 09th April, traffic will be controlled by temporary 2-way traffic lights. In order to carry out the proposed footway works on the south side and for safety reasons they will require the temporary suspension of 4 no parking bays for a 3-week period. Work will be carried out Monday to Friday with some works on Saturdays. It is anticipated that all works will be completed by end of April 2018.

The contractor is working closely with MKC Network Management and Highways Adoptions Teams and will make every endeavour to complete the works as quickly as possible.

Pedestrian and emergency access to properties will be maintained at all times. There are no planned road closures. Letters have been delivered to businesses along Stratford Road.

As soon as we get further information on any other developments at this site, we will endeavour to update you here on this site.