A PROPOSAL to change the planning conditions for the Tadpole Farm Development passed the council’s planning committee, despite objections being raised.
The council want to use Tadpole Lane and Lady Lane to build a new primary school on the site, which the council say is desperately needed because of the lack of available places.
When the development was given permission, one of the conditions was that an access route from Ermin Street would be built, but because of the changes this will now not be completed in time for the school to open in September.
Blunsdon Parish Council objected on the grounds that the new route is not safe because of its width and sharp bends.
However, the change was voted through unanimously by councillors who felt that while the change was not ideal, it was necessary so the school could be built in time – along with a number of demonstration homes.
“The need for school places in North Swindon has caused us quite a dilemma,” said Coun Vera Tomlinson (Con, St Andrews).
“We have reached crisis point and something has to be done.
“The access road will not be ready until the end of the year which means the school will not open until 2015 at the earliest which is one year too late.
“If we do not accept these changes then there will be no school ready at the time when it is needed.”
A section of Tadpole Lane is closed as it is being upgraded to cope with the extra traffic. As it stands, 5,500 journeys are made along the road and it is estimated that the building route will add an extra 20 lorries a day.
Ian Jankinson, the chairman of Blunsdon Parish Council, said: “I am not against the early building of the school and I understand the need for school places in 2014.
“However, it has been ten months since the decision was taken to build it on Tadpole Farm, and with some foresight the haul road could have been built by now.
“What we are against is the use of a weight-restricted rural lane as a haul road to begin not only the construction of the school, but the first few houses as well.”
The alteration means developer Crest Nicholson will be able to access the the site from a temporary road coming off Tadpole Lane, but they will only be able to send traffic along this route until the end of 2014, after which they must use the originally planned access road.
John Terry, the managing director of Crest Strategic Projects, said: “We’re delighted planning consent has been agreed for the temporary access road from Tadpole Lane to the school site. “Work to construct the road will start next month. Providing this access route will mean Swindon Council can begin building the school much earlier than originally anticipated.”