Donington gets approval – conditional on traffic scheme

By LJ Hutchins

CalendarThursday, January 8th, 2009

 
 

The redevelopment of Donington Park in a quest to be ready to host the 2010 British Grand Prix has cleared a significant hurdle by being granted planning permission – but it comes with a major condition.

Members of the North West Leicestershire District Council’s planning committee gave unanimous approval to the plan, in line with recommendations from their planning officials,and following a site visit by councillors.

Building work should now be able to start in line with the terms of some 25 conditions attached to the report, including satisfying rules about drainage, construction traffic and landscaping to mitigate the development’s impact.

But permission was also conditional on the preparation and approval of an event management plan which will cover aspects like travel, emergency planning and aviation safety at nearby East Midlands Airport.

If the plan does not meet with the approval of the council then it will be able to apply for an injunction to stop the event going ahead. The Telegraph reports the condition:

It has led to Gillett and the district council entering into an agreement whereby if he fails to produce a workable travel management plan, they could impose an injunction.

Gillett admitted: “The traffic management plan is one of my biggest bugbears because it’s about my customers. If they don’t get in then they’re not going to come back and they are not going to have the experience I want them to have.”

Cllr Stevenson added: “With the traffic management plan, we can first try it out on another event with over 20,000 attendees. If it doesn’t work, then as Simon has said, it won’t help him and it won’t help the people we represent, and both are important.

“But I’ve never known a judge yet, if we say we’re going to take out an injunction, not give us the support of the court. There are no ifs and buts, and they know that.

“But our focus now is to work with Donington Park from here on in to make sure we don’t get to that point.

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