ENVIRONMENTAL campaigners are urging the council to refuse permission for a huge new housing and leisure development.

Brighton and Hove Friends of the Earth say the proposed Toads Hole Valley development, just south of the A27 near King George VI Avenue, will increase traffic, congestion, and pollution in the city.

A special planning committee will be held on May 25 to decide the duplicate planning application for the development.

The Argus: Illustrative Master Plan Toads Hole ValleyIllustrative Master Plan Toads Hole Valley

Campaigner Chris Todd criticised the development for its lack of sustainable transport, such as cycle and bus links.

He said: “For people to even consider calling this an exemplary sustainable development is beyond belief.

“It is a massive wasted opportunity which will cause great harm to the city with more traffic and pollution.

The Argus: Toads Hole Valley BoundaryToads Hole Valley Boundary

“What is most shocking is that the lack of scrutiny on transport issues has left the planning committee in the dark.

“This will have skewed their conclusions last time and could skew them again. The development should be rejected until these critical issues are resolved.”

The privately-owned 42-hectare site is the city’s largest greenfield development.

The Argus: Toad's Hole Valley Land UseToad's Hole Valley Land Use

The original planning application was made in 2018, but the council and National Highways were unable to give a decision on the application due to having insufficient information to assess the impact on the A24 and other local roads.

Following an appeal to the planning inspectorate, a public inquiry was scheduled to take place between Thursday 9 and Friday June 17.

Since the appeal was first lodged, the outstanding transport information was submitted and it has since been assessed to be acceptable.

The duplicate application, to be determined at local level, will run alongside the appeal, which will be determined by the national planning inspectorate.

If the planning committee approves the duplicate scheme, the appeal against the original application may be withdrawn.

But if the planning committee refuses the application, it will be used as part of the council's evidence for the appeal at the public inquiry in June.

The special planning committee meeting will be broadcast live on the council’s website from 2pm on May 25.

Developers Toad Hole Valley Limited have been approached for comment.