Romford, Essex

Client: Asset Rock Ltd

Services: Flood Risk Assessment, Noise Assessment, Traffic Assessment and Contaminated Land Assessment

Project Overview/ Summary: 

Four assessments were undertaken to support a prior-notification application for the change of use from offices to residential of HCL House in Romford, Essex.  The assessments were accepted by the Council, and the change of use was approved via prior notification, without the need for a full planning application.

Flood Risk: A review of Environment Agency Flood Maps showed that a section of the site was located within Flood Zone 2 i.e. at risk of flooding during the 1 in 1,000 year return period from river sources.  Through topographic analysis and visual inspection of the area during a site walkover, it was confirmed that the site was not at risk from flooding due to retaining structures which would prevent flood flows reaching the site. This informed the assessment of the development and it was concluded that mitigation measures were not required to protect the site from flooding.  Surface also appraised flood risk at the site from other sources such as surface water, reservoirs and sewers.

Noise: Surface undertook an assessment of noise from commercial properties at HCL House, to meet the requirements of planning officers in confirming the appropriate process for change of use was by prior notification.  Noise monitoring was undertaken, along with modelling of potential noise from nearby air conditioning plant.  Assessment of road and rail traffic noise was not required, as it is deemed not to be commercial noise.

Traffic: Surface delivered an assessment of impact on traffic from the change of use of HCL House from office to residential.  This included a review of parking arrangements, a study of baseline traffic flows and public transport provision and capacity.

Contamination:  A desk-study of the potential for the change of use of HCL House from office to residential to cause harm via contamination was undertaken.  No potential pathways were found to be affected, and no new sources were identified.

Further work: our reports were seen on the Council’s planning portal, and on the basis of the quality of the reports, Surface was requested to carry out similar work for other developers.