The artists impressions of new developments always look idyllic. The truth of the reality is very often far from that alluring image.
Well, we the current residents of Waterlooville are about to find out the truth of what we are to be saddled with. The new development was to be called Newlands. A sign had already been put up, on the exit from the roundabout, but shortly after had been roughly painted over. Newlands was a truly uninspiring name and certainly one lacking in any imagination. The developer, Grainger, has decided on “Berewood”. A name that at least has some historical linkage with an area which was once covered by the Forest of Bere.
Development director John Beresford said: ‘We will start work next week and by September hope to have the main infrastructure in place ready for the first house builders to start work in the autumn.
‘That being the case, we would anticipate that the first dwelling will be ready to be marketed by the beginning of next year.
Then we will see the start in the rise of the traffic which is going to clog up Waterlooville. Ignoring the construction traffic and the mess that will inevitably become a bane on our lives during the build.
Even now this area of Waterlooville all but comes to a standstill during peak traffic times. With the additional housing becoming available early in 2013 this situation is only going to get worse. The difference is that there will be more folks heading into this area as they head home.
Lets not forget the new Sainsbury store that is being built on the other side of the road from this new development as well as the new service station. All will be bringing more traffic to the area.
This is set to become one of the busiest road networks in the area what with three major roundabouts and a set of traffic lights all within a mile.
For the sake of the new development residents, I hope the developer will ensure that there are no new roads which will become rat runs. I can see that motorists will be looking for a way to bypass this area and a new housing estate might just provide the escape route they are looking for.
The development will be built in phases, with the first one comprising 194 homes, next to the new roundabout on Maurepas Way.
There is no new roundabout here. This really is only an adjustment to the existing one. So we will see the initial phase putting 194 homes with this as there only way in and out.
Waterlooville councillor Paul Buckley said: ‘Having accepted the fact it’s going to be built, it will be good to see it actually starting.
‘In many ways they are not our homes, they are Winchester homes.
Councillor Buckley seems like someone who is resigned to the fact that an issue he is opposed to is going ahead. I’m not surprised when further into the quote he also states that these are Winchester homes.
How does Winchester get so much of a say in what happens in our area ?
‘In terms of the economy of Waterlooville, from a commercial shopkeepers’ point of view, the town can only benefit.’
Which commercial shopkeepers would they be then. All these new residents will be rushing in their hordes to visit the charity stores, the pound shops and the cafe’s.
All of the traditional shops are leaving. Waterlooville centre is dyeing. What are our planners doing to entice the big names, the prestigious names into Waterlooville.
What do we have now ?
For the Cafe Culture we have Costa Coffee. For the kids we have Macdonalds. Major retailers are represented by Asda, Waitrose, Wilkinsons, Peacocks, Superdrug and Boots. Most of the major banks are represented too.
Much money has been spent of making Waterlooville look like a throwback to the 50’s idea of a modern town centre.
Sometimes it makes me wonder where the planners heads are. Time will only tell what kind of hell they have committed us to.