Friday 26 March 2004
Secret plan sets its sights on Slyfield
MASSIVE development programme for a 100-acre site – including the land
originally proposed for the Slyfield incinerator – is being secretly considered
by Guildford Borough Council.
The suggestion could even involve moving Thames Water’s sewage treatment works, confidential borough council papers reveal.
Developing the site, which stretches along the River Wey from the council’s Woking Road depot to the far northern boundary of the Slyfield Industrial Estate, would “reduce the risk of further waste incinerator proposals”, the report says.
A spokeswoman for Thames Water confirmed yesterday (Thursday) the talks had taken place, but stressed they were at a “very early stage”. Council officials refused to comment.
Politicians on the community development scrutiny committee are being asked in committee on Monday to recommend the borough’s decision-making Executive approves a feasibility study on developing the 40.2-hectare (99.3-acre) site. Options for the site, which encompasses the Woking Road depot, Thames Water’s sewage treatment works, allotments and the former landfill site, also owned by Thames, include housing, employment and recreational uses and “appropriate waste facilities”.
But the first stage, according to the document, would be the redevelopment of the Woking Road depot and the Stoke Park Nursery, the current site of which, the report says, has redevelopment potential if it is relocated to Slyfield.
If a proposed joint study costing up to £40,000 between the council and Thames Water manages to overcome the transport issues understood to have been raised, and validates the scheme, it could finally mean an end to the long-running spectre of an incinerator in Guildford.
The report says the whole project hinges on whether the sewage works can be relocated, as increasing the capacity of the neighbouring Woking Road depot is a priority of the council.
A provisional brief says the consultants should “advise on the potential for the regeneration of land including the borough council’s Woking Road depot, allotments and the undeveloped former landfill site at Slyfield … to provide a master plan/land use planning strategy to guide redevelopment of the area”.
Stage one of their work would be to focus on traffic implications on Woking Road before looking at flood risks, the potential visual impact on the Wey Navigation Conservation Area and the opportunities of such a development as a second stage.
In the master plan the consultants will be asked to give options to improve the road infrastructure, opportunities to enhance and expand Riverside Park and assess the impact on adjacent residential areas.
If the scrutiny committee recommends the feasibility study goes ahead, the report will go to the Executive committee on April 8.