Braintree Gateway Park
Avian Ecology were commissioned to undertaken a suite of ecology surveys and assessments between 2017 and 2019 to inform an outline planning application for the Braintree Gateway Park in Essex. The proposed development comprised c.250 residential dwellings alongside a larger mixed-use development including retail, commercial space and further housing.
We consulted with the LPA on numerous occasions throughout the planning process to agree a suitable approach with regard to ecology. We also provided the LPA with sufficient ecology information to undertake a Habitat Regulations Assessment (HRA) for the scheme which concluded that there would be no detrimental effects on any nearby statutory designated wildlife sites as a result of the proposed development.
We worked closely with the project team to incorporate various design features to minimise impacts and benefit local wildlife. The landscape scheme included new areas of meadow grassland and native species planting to strengthen and reinforce existing hedgerows to maintain habitat connectivity. The proposed habitat enhancements also included a grassland management regime to encourage a structurally and more species diverse grassland, and scrub and hedgerow planting which in time will provide refuge and foraging opportunities for a range of species. A wildlife pond and bat and bird boxes will also be provided.
Avian Ecology developed a mitigation strategy for great crested newts and formulated a number of Reasonable Avoidance Measures (RAMs) to be implemented during construction to minimise impacts to protected species including bats, birds, badgers, reptiles and dormouse.