Luton Town fans will have to wait until late August to finally find out if councillors will vote to support the Hatters’ planning applications.
This morning (Monday) Luton Council announced that its Development Control Committee would be determining the schemes for a Power Court stadium and enabling development of retail/leisure/offices at Newlands Park during week commencing Monday, August 20 (2018) – two years after the applications were originally submitted in August 2016.
In a statement to the media, the council said: “The council has been working with the developer over a number of months to bring together and finalise all of the necessary information, documentation and reports which are legally required before a planning application can be determined.
“We would like to thank fans for their patience throughout this process which has taken a long time due to the sheer size and complexity of the two interdependent applications. This has made it difficult to provide a date before now, especially given the amount of technical background work required by us, the club and third parties over a number of months.
“If everything proceeds as we believe it will, the week beginning 20 August 2018 is a realistic possibility to allow enough time for us to complete the outstanding work that still needs to be finalised before the applications can be determined.”
It said the outstanding pieces of work include:
> Finalising the independent review of the retail impact assessment of the proposals. This will be published in May and will be out to public consultation for 4 weeks afterwards.
> Reviewing consultation responses on the Retail Impact Assessment and allowing time for the developer to comment on these. The council has allowed 3 to 4 weeks this.
> 3-4 weeks for the council to write the final Development Control report and recommendations, allowing time for any legal advice required to make sure all planning arguments and processes are robust.
The statement added: “We are also legally required to publish the report and recommendations 1-2 weeks before the meeting and there are some practical issues such as making sure that we have a suitable venue as we think that people will want to attend or at least be able to hear the discussion.
“Once again we would like to thank everyone for their understanding, but it’s been important all along that the correct process is followed.”