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Beckenham residents react to station car park expansion as underpass floods
RESIDENTS close to New Beckenham station say there's no one in the area who supports a car park extension that was approved last week.
The Kings Hall Road site will see 64 new spaces added, according to Bromley Council - with some in the area fearing a greater risk of flooding as a result.
Cllr Peter Fookes, 52, of Bramerton Road, said the extension's unnecessary and questions where the council’s found the money to do it. He opposed the application at a committee meeting.
He said: “We should not be adding parking spaces in this area. It’s going to do damage. I don’t know where the money’s come from.”
Bob Asquith, 75, lives in Kings Hall road and his home backs on to the car park. He said he doesn’t know anyone close in favour and is worried about flooding risks as green space is concreted over.
He said: “We’re not pleased – it’s not necessary. The traffic during rush hour is appalling and it’s choking.
“It’s going to create more water problems. Right now I can see surface water coming up from the ground.”
Both Mr Fookes and Mr Asquith also mentioned the added noise and pollution more cars would bring to the area.
But councillor Colin Smith, Executive Councillor for Environment, said residents’ views were taken into account and the development has been tweaked as a result.
In a statement said: “This is the right decision all round and after the application was deferred twice it is a different scheme and strikes the right balance.
“The numbers of car parking spaces have been reduced slightly whilst the amount of landscaping has increased, including the planting of 21 London Plane trees, specifically chosen for their ability to absorb pollution.
“We need to remember that these improvements are designed to help hard pressed commuters find a parking space.”
Last week the underpass at the station was flooded as heavy rain continued to fall across the South East.
Taxonomist Ian Synge, 41, of Blakeney Road, said he felt for residents who missed their trains when they discovered the route was impassable.
He said: “The tunnel under the lines regularly floods a bit when it rains. I’m not sure South Eastern is that bothered about it – but when it gets to waist deep you have to ask questions.”
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