Consultation response
We would like to thank everyone who has taken the time to share their comments on the proposals for Baltic Wharf. We understand that building new homes is an emotive issue for many people and the application is the product of many months of work by our specialist project team reflecting on all of the feedback received to ensure we deliver the best possible scheme at Baltic Wharf.

Following the submission of the application Bristol City Council ran its own consultation on the proposals. The responses to the consultation covered a number of areas and we have responded below to the main areas raised.
Context

We understand that there have been concerns raised about the provision of new open market and affordable homes on the Baltic Wharf site and feel it is important to understand the context in which the site is coming forward for development. Balancing the importance of enhancing the environment with the need for new homes in Bristol, in accordance with local policy and in alignment with the aspirations of the public requires achieving an appropriate balance. More information on this can be found here.



Western Harbour

Bristol City Council has identified the western end of the harbour as a possible site for large scale development and are consulting on these proposals separately. However, the Baltic Wharf site, whilst forming part of the Western Harbour Growth and Regeneration Area, falls outside of the Western Harbour Project Area itself.

Similarly, to development proposals such as Payne’s Shipyard to the south of the Avon, bringing forward of planning applications does not conflict with the consultation process and proposals of the Western Harbour Project Area.



Height & scale – we were asked to review the building heights
  • The site is located within the city centre and the Urban Living SPD states that 200dph is optimum density for such a site to maximise the potential to deliver new homes for Bristol.
  • The proposed density at Baltic Wharf is 193 dph and therefore in accordance with this policy
  • The proposals are for a moderate height from 3 to 6 storeys with slender buildings to allow for landscaped open space in between.
  • Building heights were lowered as part of the design development prior to submission so that they are only 6 storeys in a single location in the centre of the site, where it’s visibility and impact is greatly reduced.
  • Following comments during the Council’s consultation about the heights of the buildings proposed we have undertaken a further assessment. This showed that a reduction in height by one storey would reduce the number of homes by 16, resulting in a loss of 7 affordable and 9 market units.
  • This is a key city-centre brownfield site in a sustainable location, where there is a significant demand for new homes and best use must be made of such locations in order to reduce pressure on less sustainable sites where there will be a greater environmental impact.
  • Therefore, reflecting on the above, we have decided to retain the current heights and are confident that Baltic Wharf will form a positive addition to the existing harbourside landscape.


Heritage - we were asked to look at building heights & brick colour
  • Historic England broadly supports the proposed development and concluded harm to the City Docks and Underfall Yard as less than substantial.
  • In response to further comments from Historic England, we have changed the western wing of Block E from red brick to buff brick. This will help the development better contrast with the neighbouring Bonded warehouses when viewed along Cumberland Road.
  • The buildings’ location, shape, roofs and materials reflect its harbourside location and the wall along Cumberland Road will remain and be improved as part of the proposals.


Daylight, sunlight and shadowing – questions were raised over daylight, sunlight & overshadowing
  • We have increased the number and size of some of the windows as well as repositioning balconies to improve the amount of daylight and sunlight entering into proposed homes
  • The homes all meet or exceed nationally prescribed design sizes and the layout seeks to provide light and spacious homes to accommodate modern living and the need for larger accessible homes which can be adapted for wheelchairs.
  • We have looked again at the impact on neighbouring properties to the east.
  • As before this shows that these properties will experience a minor adverse impact but will still enjoy good quality daylight in accordance with the anticipated levels for a home in this location.


Trees onsite – we were asked to look at retaining more trees
  • Since the planning application was submitted, we have undertaken further studies in relation to the trees onsite.
  • We have looked to retain as many trees as possible whilst still delivering new homes on this site.
  • There are 101 trees onsite and 82 of these will need to be removed to facilitate this development.
  • In accordance with Bristol policy, this equates to a requirement to plant 227 new trees. Our proposals include planting 65 trees onsite, 10 near site and 152 new trees being planted within Bristol by means of a commuted sum to the council.
  • These measures will result in a net loss of 17 trees on site and a gain of 126 trees within Bristol.
  • The trees that are to be removed are of moderate quality and a lower ecological value than those being replaced. Replacement trees will be semi mature trees including cherry, birch, alder, hornbeam and beech.


Biodiversity – we were asked to complete a biodiversity calculation
  • Currently the existing caravan site comprises of some 83% hardstanding and a relatively low ecological contribution.
  • For best practice a biodiversity assessment has been completed and the site will deliver a 33% increase in biodiversity habitat as defined by the DEFRA 3.0 metric. We do however have a loss of hedgerow overall which we are unable to mitigate onsite.
  • More information about the biodiversity onsite can be found here.


Flood Risk – we were asked to update our modelling and confirm compliance with the sequential test
  • A detailed Flood Risk Assessment (FRA) was completed as part of the application and concluded that homes will remain safe and above the predicted levels of any flood event for the next 100 years.
  • FRA dated March 2021 & the sequential test confirms the development is safe and meets all policy & design requirements.
  • Since the application was submitted updated information about predicted flooding has been released and we are continuing to assess our scheme against this.
  • The Baltic Wharf scheme is not reliant on the implementation of the proposed flood protection measures by Bristol City Council.
  • Through our modelling we have also confirmed that there is only a negligible impact on the flood risk to the local area and the development will not exacerbate flood risk elsewhere in Bristol.


Wind – we were asked to complete a wind microclimate assessment
  • We have completed a wind microclimate assessment to look at impacts on the water.
  • This looked at the current existing relative wind speeds around the sailing club’s harbourside and on the water and what impact the development would have.
  • This concluded that the predominate wind direction is from a 260 degree direction (south west) and is likely to result in some smaller alterations to wind patterns.
  • These range from both an increase of between 10% to 20% and a decrease between 10% to 30% on the water.
Whilst having an impact on the wind speeds, it is not believed this impact would detract from the current use of the harbour for such watersports activities that are present.
  • A question was raised over the inclusion of the dutch barn behind the sailing club was included within the wind model and whether the impact of this being open or closed would affect the results of the wind report.
  • The specialist consultant has reviewed this and concluded that any adjustment to the model in light of this would be negligible on the previous results provided.


Transport – we were asked to look at parking and complete a travel plan
  • The site is in a sustainable location with excellent walking and cycling links to the city centre and a travel plan will be created.
  • There are 78 car parking spaces with the option for EV charging in the future.

More information on sustainable travel to, from and around the site can be found on the Environment page



Community – we were asked to complete a BREEAM Communities Assessment and look at the uses in the non-residential space
  • We have completed an initial BREEAM Communities Assessment.
  • We also wanted to confirm the potential use classes onsite, we are applying for Class F1 use at block B – education, display or artwork, public or exhibition space.
  • At block A – Class E – retail, health services, a day nursery or restaurant.
  • The development will also generate financial contributions through the Community Infrastructure Levy.


Energy - We were asked to clarify the energy statement

More information can be found on the Environment Page

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