East Herts Council
|7 July 2021|
Dear Sir or Madam
I am writing on behalf of the Bishop’s Stortford Civic Federation to object to this application to install 5.75 metre high lighting columns on the top floor of the Northgate End Car Park currently under construction.
This development, though not yet complete, is already a gross intrusion into the conservation area and a development for which no need has yet been demonstrated – although integral to the development of Old River Lane, what that development will comprise is currently unknown and the car park, treated as a freestanding proposal, is completely unnecessary. High level lighting on the top floor of the car park will increase the detriment to the conservation area and cause excessive light pollution, particularly for nearby residential properties.
The nearest analogy in the District to this development in terms of inappropriateness of location, scale and appearance is the multi storey car park, also operated by East Herts Council, in Gascoyne Way, Hertford. This car park has no lighting columns on the top floor, with all the lighting located within the parapet wall. We see no reason why a similar arrangement cannot be adopted at Northgate End. Although the car park has a wider footprint than the one in Hertford, a similar level of lighting could be achieved (possibly triggered to come on by movement sensors) by installing central barrier containing lighting on the top floor.
An alternative approach which would also be less unacceptable than this proposal would be to close the top floor to public access during the hours of darkness, making any form of artificial lighting unnecessary. This would have the added benefit of discouraging the types of anti social behaviour which this kind of development tends to attract.
We trust therefore that permission for this application will be refused.