Gridlock predicted on Headland roads after 110 new homes approved

The Marine Point housing development, Old Cemetery Point, Hartlepool. Picture by FRANK REID

The Marine Point housing development, Old Cemetery Point, Hartlepool. Picture by FRANK REID

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Concerns have been raised over whether infrastructure for a major new housing development in Hartlepool will be able to cope after 110 more homes were given the go-ahead.

Work is already well under way on hundreds of homes on the £100million Marine Point development on the former Steetley chemical works site.

The road leading to the Marine Point housing development, Old Cemetery Point, Hartlepool. Picture by FRANK REID

The road leading to the Marine Point housing development, Old Cemetery Point, Hartlepool. Picture by FRANK REID

Permission has been granted for the second phase of 110 homes, bringing the total size of the development to 484.

A new access road has been built connecting the development off Old Cemetery Road to West View Road and a new roundabout.

But fears have been raised with planning authority Hartlepool Borough Council over whether a single road in and out of the estate and a new roundabout will be able to cope with the hundreds of cars new residents will bring.

Concerned Headland resident Heather McWilliam said: “I think it’s a great use of brown site land. But I foresee traffic gridlock and problems for emergency access if that route becomes blocked.

“Hundreds of cars are potentially going to be trying to get on and off the site in the morning and afternoon and evening peak. They have right of way on the new roundabout, so I predict there will be frequent tailbacks on Northgate.

“They seem to have put the bare minimum infrastructure. For a development of this size of 484 houses, I would have thought it vital to get an independent traffic report.”

John Cambridge, chairman of Headland Parish Council, sympathised with Ms McWilliam’s concerns.

He said: “I have the same concerns but there is nothing we can do about it. The roundabout is a nuisance to start with.”

A council spokesman said: “When outline planning permission was granted for Marine Point, the developer submitted proposals for a new road and roundabout to improve access to the area.

“It is standard practice for developers to propose changes to the public highway as part of the planning application process. The council was satisfied that the design of the scheme was appropriate for this location.

“As all new road schemes, it will be closely monitored over time.”

Nick Blezzard of developer Starford Holdings, said: “The council approved the traffic survey and approved the road.

“The road has been put in far sooner than was required by the planning permission.”