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Barton Development

Pre-Hearing Meeting

Notes from this meeting by John Rawson added 8/6/2012

A Pre-Hearing Meeting was held at 1.30pm on Thursday 7 June 2012 in Oxford Town Hall, St Aldate's, Oxford OX1 1BX. This was a joint meeting with the Sites and Housing Plan respondents.

At the meeting, the Inspector set out how she intends to run the hearings and the main areas of focus for each Examination. The meeting was open to the public and was particularly relevant for those who intend to participate in the hearings. An agenda for the meeting can be viewed here

Examination Hearings timetable

The Hearings will start at 1.30pm on Monday 16 July 2012 in Oxford Town Hall, St Aldate's, Oxford OX1 1BX. They will continue until Friday 20 July 2012. The hearings are open to the public but only those who have already made representations, and informed the Programme Officer that they wish to attend, may participate in the discussion.  An initial timetable for the hearings is set out here:

A separate web page is maintained by the Council for the Barton Examination

The latest consultation on the BAAP Proposed Submission closed on March 23rd, and now many of the relevant documents can be seen here where the responses that the Council has received can be read.

The Friends' response is RB58 in the numbered sequence and has been extracted here

The Ruskin Fields Group is currently reading all these with a view to producing a brief digest for the Committee. The Council's timetable is shown below

The italicised stage is provisional and subject to change.

Gather background evidence On-going
Consult on Issues Document & Sustainability Appraisal (SA) Scoping June - July 2010
Publish report on community views gathered during Issues consultation Sept 2010
Publish Preferred Options Document & Draft SA report May 2011
Consult on Preferred Options & Draft SA report May - June 2011
Publish Proposed Submission Document & Final SA report Feb 2012
Consult on Proposed Submission Document & Final SA report
Feb - Mar 2012
Submit the AAP to the Secretary of State April 2012
Independent Examination in Public Jul 2012
Adopt Barton Area Action Plan Dec 2012

 A number of organizations including The Friends have stated that they wish to speak at the enquiry, but that the decision as to who will be called rests with the Examining Inspector.

The next consultation stage has now begun, and runs until March 23rd. The City Council is seeking comments on the Draft Submission which the Council plans to present to the Secretary of State and subsequently to an Examining Inspector who will hold a public enquiry on the Barton Area Action Plan as it then stands.

The Friends' Committee continues to be seriously concerned for the future of Stoke Place (see section 5.5). The Council is proposing to 'upgrade' the lane and bridleway, which would involve thinning the trees, resurfacing, widening, and lighting the full extent of Stoke Place. It's hard to see how this will not destroy its charm and rural character forever.

The Committee will therefore ask the Council to reconsider the use of Stoke Place as the principal cycle and pedestrian link to and from Barton West. If you agree with this, we would appreciate your support in responding to the consultation: the Council's comment form can be found here, and images of Stoke Place can be viewed here, a, b c & d.

Another issue the Committeee will raise is the 'boulevard' scheme. The Council plans refer to the A40 here as a 'city street' with the northern side of the ring road lined with houses in order to promote the 'integration ' of Barton West with Headington and Northway. Since a boulevard is by definition two sided, and since integration between communities which can't see each other is unlikely, we feel that the aim is probably an increase in housing. Since this could be achieved by a better layout, with houses facing away from the A40, the 'boulevard' proposal is both inherently unsound and unnecessary. It also fosters the idea that building on this side of the ring road is appropriate. 

The Oxford Times has recently published a leader and a number of letters  which present the chief arguments for and against the 'boulevard'.

The Council is asking for your views, so do please complete forms, or write in with your comments; we are near neighbours to the Barton West development and should certainly take the opportunity to express an opinion.

 Further information can be found on the Barton Area Action Plan pages of the Council's website.

40mph speed limit plan for Oxford ring road- Oxford Times readership poll 15th December 2011

Protesters fail to stop Barton West (From The Oxford Times) December 2011 pdf

Oxford Times letter December 2011

Developer picked for new Barton homes 4th May 2011

Oxford Times Article - 11th November 2010

Barton Area Action Plan: Issues Report on public consultation - September 2010 pdf

An Archaeological desk-based assessment of land at Barton on behalf of Oxford City Council - December 2009