Tram plans for Preston thrown out over noise fears

Trams in the Netherlands'' (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
Trams in the Netherlands'' (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)
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  • Plans for Deepdale tram could be “game changer”
  • But councillors say there is not enough information on road safety fears
  • Also concerns over noise levels from trams
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THE development of trams in Preston has been derailed after plans were thrown out.

An application was put before Preston Council’s planning committee yesterday, proposing the first phase of a project to build a tram line in Deepdale.

A decision had already been deferred earlier this year for more information to be provided, but officers said there was still not enough information about highways safety, and the project would create unacceptable noise levels.

Councillors voted to reject the plans five votes to two, with six committee members abstaining from the vote.

Representatives of Trampower Ltd, the firm behind the plan, described the application as a “game changer”.

Professor Lewis Lesley said: “There is worldwide interest in this project. I get emails regularly from people overseas.”

John Parker said: “I am keen to see this development go ahead, because I am keen to see that match Preston’s city status.”

But councillors refused the plans, following the recommendation of officers.

Committee chairman Coun Brian Rollo said: “The reason for the recommendation for refusal is insufficient information has been submitted. That’s not to say there’s a risk on the road, it’s up to the applicant to provide the information to make sure there isn’t.

“The second reason is noise levels. This is a new use and we don’t approve noisy new uses.”

The application included plans to reopen a stretch of the railway line between the coal yard off Deepdale Street and the rear of St Chads Road.

Coun David Borrow said: “The thing in this report which concerns me more than anything else is the fact the county council has not had the information it requires.

“That information was requested at the start of the year.

“We’ve got no option but to put a stop to it.”