Residents Raising Funds To Fight Orchard Road Car Park Closure

Planning consultant appointed to challenge council application

Orchard Road car park
Orchard Road car park


Parking Space Squeeze Feared Due to Orchard Road Housing Plan

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A group of Brentford residents are launching a fundraising appeal in an attempt to fight the loss of a local car park.

The Orchard Road Residents’ Association has set up a GoFundMe page and so far over £1,200 has been raised.

A prize draw to win a hand-made hamper worth £100 is on offer to anyone who donates at least £5.

The group has appointed planning specialists MZA Planning to make its case to Hounslow Council, whose plans to develop the car park at the eastern end of Orchard Road would mean the loss of 30 car-parking spaces. The pay and display car park is available to Brentford Station CPZ permit holders and this provision reduces the number of cars parked on adjacent streets.

The Council’s plans would see the construction of five, family size, two-story houses with no off-road parking and no guarantee of replacement parking for the loss of the car park.

Petitions against the development have been signed by 322 people living in the vicinity. As one of the oldest streets in the area, Orchard Road is scheduled to be designated as a conservation area.

Although the car park lies just outside the proposed Conservation Area, MZA Planning are of the view that the emerging Conservation Area status of Orchard Road should be taken into account.

Furthermore, it is claimed the re-distribution of car parking lost to development within the conservation area would have a detrimental impact on the character of Orchard Road, where the streetscene is already dominated by parking.

Visualisation of houses planned on Orchard Road car park

The residents allege that the loss of parking and lack of proper consultation – which has resulted in an extension being granted to gauge locals’ views – have meant they have had no option but to object to the plans despite recognising the need for more housing in the borough.

‘The roads around Orchard Road are already very crowded – and will become more so,’ the group says.

‘The large development on Boston Manor Road, just opposite Brentford Station, is progressing. And the threat looms of an extra floor being added to Mercury House, just opposite the car park, which is already a whole block of 30 flats with no parking.’

They point out that these developments add to the significant amount of new housing planned near the High Street.

The Residents’ Association says it has have tried to engage with the Council but have yet to receive a response to its requests for a meeting.

The Council have also confirmed, through a Freedom of Information request lodged by the group, that they are considering developing the 30 garages at the Windmill Road end of Orchard Road – further eroding car parking in the area and adding more residents and therefore more cars onto the streets.

A spokesperson for the group said, ‘We are of the view that there are better sites for further housing development in the borough. The current proposals for family houses will have no car parking provision, or even disabled parking, as part of the scheme.

‘Occupiers will have no rights to apply for resident parking permits for street parking. This does not represent a desirable or sustainable model for multi-generational living in the community.’

The group also points out that once full attendance begins at Brentford Stadium – despite the move to Kew Bridge – the car park is so near the A/M4 that many supporters, local and visiting, will use the roads around the Orchard Road for parking on match days, as they have
traditionally done.

The Council’s suggested mitigation for the loss of parking is to remove some yellow lines but residents believe this will result in serious congestion. They say buses already have to be diverted when people park on Windmill Road on match days.

The proposals will go before the Planning Committee meeting on 4 March. The virtual meeting is virtual and open to the public – for further information click here.

Full details of the fundraising campaign can be found on this link.

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February 19, 2021

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