News Higgins Office and Hotel Development
4 August 2023
planning application has now been approved by the District Council. LRA
Cllr Chris Pond said Loughton did need an hotel given it has a
population of 33,000 and no hotel, but doubted if the proposal was
acceptable without minimisation of extra car traffic, given the
existing traffic problems on Chigwell Lane and Langston Road.
The application was ultimately approved, with a Guest Travel Plan required to be in place.
14 July 2023
The application is now going forward for a decision, with a recommendation for approval by District Council planning officers.
Plans Group consider officers should stop looking at paper reports and
witness the traffic problems directly for themselves. Every resident in
Loughton who drives past the site, for example, to access the M11, will
know the junction at Chigwell Lane and Langston Road has been unable to
cope with the additional traffic generated since the opening of the
Epping Forest Shopping Park on Langston Road. In particular, the number
of cars waiting to turn into Langston Road has caused the traffic to
back up past Debden Broadway. There is an opportunity to negotiate with
the developer, either for an additional lane for cars turning left into
Langston Road to alleviate the traffic on Chigwell Lane and/or carry
out other junction and signalling improvements.
As we have reported earlier, Higgins have proposed to build new offices and a 100 bedroom Travelodge hotel on Langston Road.
There is now a new planning application that proposes replacing the existing car wash and
cycle/refuse store with a 5/6 storey building for offices and a hotel,
and converting the open green space on site with car parks. This would
be alongside the existing Higgins building (a site plan is here)
are concerned about the amount of development on Langston Road which is
impacting on the traffic at the junction of Chigwell Lane and Langston
Road. The road network has been unable to cope with the additional
traffic generated since the opening of the Epping Forest Shopping Park
on Langston Road. In particular, the number of cars waiting to turn
into Langston Road has caused the traffic to back up past Debden
Broadway. The District Council has been urged to negotiate with the
developer for an additional lane for cars turning left into Langston
Road to alleviate the traffic on Chigwell Lane and carry out other
junction and signalling improvements.
LRAPG has also objected to
the unnecessary high-level signage which is highly visible from long
views, and jars against the treetops of Epping Forest. They are also a
distraction for users of the M11. The existing Higgins sign sticks out
like a sore thumb and this is the opportunity to negotiate its removal
to tidy up the roofline along this part of Langston Road.
Council has also been asked to ensure a legal agreement is entered into
to stop the new offices from being converted into residential flats
which the owners can do without planning permission.
Reference EPF/1204/22. The formal consultation period ended July 29th, but you can still comment to the Council.
17 December 2021
Plans Group (LRAPG) have received several comments over the proposal to
build new offices and a 100 bedroom Travelodge hotel on Langston Road.
Many residents question the need for a hotel but most concerns are in
connection with the horrendous traffic problems at this junction which
have got significantly worse since the retail park opened. One of the
solutions put forward by our members is to install a roundabout. This
was considered and approved back in 1996 but never implemented. It is
noticed the loss of the mini roundabout on the junction of The Broadway
and Chigwell Lane has made traffic in that area worse. A new roundabout
with part-time traffic lights during peak times would help the current
situation at Langston Road but the additional cars from the development
will damage the Epping Forest Special Area of Conservation.
19 November 2021 A big development planned for Chigwell Lane
Group are putting up a proposal for new offices and a new hotel at 1,
Langston Road, next to their existing offices. Earlier this year they
got planning permission to convert their existing HQ into 57 new homes
– bizarrely, one of the Government’s tweaks to the planning laws let
this go through without local Cllrs being able to object, despite the
adverse effect the extra residents and their vehicles will inevitably
have on the Epping Forest Special Area of Conservation.
are now bringing forward proposals to redevelop their car park for a
new HQ, as well as a new a 100-bed hotel to be operated by Travelodge.
You can see their brochure here. It gives details of a public event at their offices on 1st December, where you can see the plans and give your feedback. There will also be details online
from November 30th, and an opportunity to give your views online. Those
not online can ask Higgins to send them the documents by post. Note
that this is not yet a planning application – in due course the
proposals will have to go through the full District Council planning
process, including a public consultation.