Pedestrian bridge in heritage area favoured for public safety reasons

A pedestrian/cycle bridge in a conservation area and special area of conservation in Bristol was allowed, subject to numerous conditions, with the public benefits of the scheme in relation to improvements to highway safety outweighing the limited harm to the surrounding conservation area and the setting of another.

The proposed stone arch bridge with ancillary ramps would be sited over a busy road in an area characterised by historic features including conservation areas, listed buildings and parkland, and wildlife features including a special site of scientific interest and special area of conservation. The proposal included the removal of 38 trees of low-moderate value individually, but of group value in terms of the character and appearance of the conservation area generally.

The inspector considered the proposed structure would be in keeping with its grand surroundings in terms of design and use of materials, but felt the loss of trees would cause harm to the appearance and character of the conservation areas affected, contrary to the development plan. She attributed limited weight to this loss given its extent would be relatively small in the context of the scale of the parkland. She concluded the public benefits of the bridge, in terms of improving highway safety in crossing a busy road, outweighed the limited harm to the heritage assets. 

Inspector: Hayley Butcher; Written representations

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