I recently raised a Freedom of Information request regarding this issue - as we can see, there clearly are plans.
Eastleigh Borough Council have opted to refuse my Freedom of Information request and hold back the plans they have for this site. Here’s the request and response in full:
Name: Sam Jordan
Reasons for FOI: matter of public interest
Please provide all information relating to the Eastleigh Borough Council development named ‘The Parlour’.
This should include;
- current considerations for the site
- current proposals that the council are considering
- any consultancy provided in regards to development of the site
- any feedback received from local residents regarding development of the site
- any cost estimates for site development
All information should be provided in digital format and there is no requirement for physical copies.
Regarding your question about current proposals, including cost estimates that the council are considering for site development, Unfortunately, the Council is unable to disclose this information to you as Regulation 12(4)(d) EIR states “… a public authority may refuse to disclose information to the extent that—
(d) the request relates to material which is still in the course of completion, to unfinished documents or to incomplete data”.
The Council also relies upon the exception under regulation 12(4)(e) that “the request involves the disclosure of internal communications”.
The exceptions under Regulation 12(4)(d) and 12(4)(e) are a ‘qualified exceptions’ and it is therefore necessary to consider whether the public interest in maintaining the exception outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information. In applying the public interest test to the exception referred to above, I have considered the following factors and reached the view that in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exception outweighs the public interest in disclosure.
Factors considered relevant to the public interest in maintaining the exceptions:
• delaying disclosure of work in progress allows the Council to produce a final or completed version. This allows the Council to finish ongoing work without interruption and interference from outside
• disclosing information that is unfinished or incomplete could give a misleading or inaccurate impression.
• the internal decision-making process is protected from scrutiny, in order to allow the Council to discuss and consider the merits of proposals and implications of decisions.
Factors considered relevant to the public interest in disclosing the information:
• Promoting accountability and transparency by public authorities for decisions taken by them and the spending of public money.
• Enabling the public to understand decisions made and actions taken by public authorities.
In all circumstances the Council considers that the public interest in maintaining the exemption prevails.
In relation to the request for current considerations for the site, information has been published on our website giving information of how to register your interest in forthcoming public engagement sessions. This information is available at: The Parlour
A number of specialist consultancies have been appointed to undertake the site surveys and satisfy the planning conditions prior to the demolition (as approved by Prior Notification ref PN/20/89301). Feedback from residents has not been received as the engagement process has yet to commence. Public comments on the application for demolition are available on the planning register if you search under PN/20/89301 using the link below: Eastleigh Planning Applications
The consultants that have been appointed are:
• John Associates (Ecologist) – John Associates produced initial Ecological Appraisal Report to support PN submission.
• Ecosa (Ecologist) – Ecosa has been appointed to carry out nesting bird checks to satisfy planning condition.
• Claque (Architect) – Claque produced plans for PN submission and Feasibility Study.
• Soils Ltd (Ground Investigation consultant) – Soils Ltd are carrying out ground investigation to satisfy planning condition.
• Envirochem – Asbestos surveys for both building to support PN submission and also condition
• AKS Ward – Structural Survey of both buildings
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