Residents fear noise problem from new plan
A planning application to build three electricity generation units has received a barrage of complaints from nearby residents.
The application will come under the scrutiny of the planning committee on Tuesday after 22 residents living nearby and deputy council leader Coun David Molyneux objected to the plan.
If approved, Alkane Energy UK Ltd will be given the go ahead to build the generation units along with a 10m high flue, associated equipment facilities and perimeter fencing at Dobson Park Industrial Estate in Ince.
The application states the units will convert mains gas into output for the electricity network in times of high demand and will only operate for a few hours a year.
Even so the residents fear the units will have an impact on public health and the environment including noise, odour and air pollution.
Coun Molyneux said: “The residents of Mitchell Street are concerned about this application. These kind of plants do cause a noise issue, especially at night and this will affect residents living nearby.
“The residents have had problems before with the noise from generators at the industrial site and this new application will be similar to that.
“It seems like there will be some significant attempt to eliminate noise but that in itself suggests there is going to be a problem with noise.
“I will be asking the committee to take a careful look at it. There are other sites on the estate that it could be built where it would be further away from residents.
“The fact they want to out a 10 metre stack around it as well will have an affect on the visual impact.”
However, council officers have recommended that the application be approved as the main points raised in objection are dealt with in a report published ahead of next week’s meeting.
The report reads: “A noise assessment has been submitted which shows satisfactory noise levels can be achieved, and conditions will be applied to ensure that these levels are adhered to.
“A five metre high acoustic barrier will be erected to screen the generation units. The development will not be in direct view from the windows of houses on Mitchell Street and the introduction of hedge planting along the external boundaries facing towards Mitchell Street should ensure any visual impact is further reduced.
“The proposals will not result in transport of hazardous substances and Public Health England has raised no objections on health impact grounds.”
Coun Molyneux is up for re-election this year. The full candidate list will be released later this week and will be in Saturday’ Wigan Evening Post.