July 25 2014 Latest news:
By Matthew Gooding
Thursday, July 10, 2014
Revised plans for a BMX club’s headquarters could be submitted following a meeting with neighbours.
The Royston Rockets BMX club met with people living near its Burns Road track last Wednesday to discuss the club’s desire to build a race office and storage facility at the track.
As reported in the Crow last month, an initial planning application made by the club was turned down by North Herts District Council following 11 objections from residents.
However, following the meeting, club chairman Phil Townsend said that a slightly different solution was being sought.
He said: “There was general consensus that a more attractive structure set on the flat ground between the start hill and the third berm would be agreeable – this would still involve a steel sub-structure for security, but clad in a way as to make it fit in with a residential area.
“Although this would be a more expensive option than the unclad structures originally proposed, it was felt this would enhance the excellent facilities the club now has, and would be worth the investment.
“The local councillors present thought it possible that funding sources could be identified to support such a project. It was therefore agreed that this option would be explored further, and costings and specifications detailed, before convening another meeting to explore this possibility further with our residential neighbours.”
Planners at the district council had criticised the previous design as it resembled a large metal box.
Residents also expressed concerns about anti-social behaviour, with the initial plans showing the building located in a corner under some trees.
“The residents at the meeting expressed a strong preference that any new facilities not be located next to the boundary fence under the trees, but instead be located further into the centre of the track,” said Mr Townsend.
“This is actually where the club would prefer them to be located, too, as having race administration next to the finish line is the ideal set-up.
“The club would like to thank all the residents for their thoughtful and constructive contributions.”
The Rockets track opened last year after a £100,000 investment project, and the club needs the storage and office to help host meetings and training sessions.
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