Public inquiry into The Landing comes to abrupt end

A public inquiry which looked to settle land disagreements on The Landing development site came to an abrupt end on Monday.

The inquiry, which took place on Microsoft Teams, was being held on behalf of the Windsor and Maidenhead council as it attempted to secure Compulsory Purchase Orders (CPOs) against two landowners in Queen Street and Cullern’s Passage.

The purpose of the inquiry was to get the planning inspectorate to confirm the CPO orders issued by the council, which would then authorise the purchase of the land for development.

But in a new twist, the inquiry only lasted a few hours on Monday due to ‘the number of withdrawals from objectors’, the planning inspectorate told the Advertiser.

Developers HUB and Smedvig want to construct hundreds of new homes, offices, retail units and public realm on the triangle of the Broadway, Queen Street and King Street as part of plans for The Landing.

In a statement, a HUB spokeswoman said that the firm was ‘on track’ to get started with works on the town centre site later this summer.

She added: “A public inquiry is often required when compulsory acquisition powers are sought.

“The inquiry relating to The Landing was closed earlier than anticipated, as it was possible to reach agreement with one of only two remaining objectors.”

The planning inspectorate told the Advertiser that the inspector in charge of the case still had to reach a verdict despite the early conclusion of the inquiry. A decision is not likely to be made for ‘a number of weeks’.

A spokesman said: “Due to the number of withdrawals by objectors, the inquiry did not need to run for the three days initially allocated.

“Objections are withdrawn for various reasons and the individual or organisation making the withdrawal does not have to give a reason.”

He added that due to the inquiry’s short length, ‘less money’ would be spent on it, due to the inspectorate charging council’s per day for the service.

When approached by the Advertiser, the Windsor and Maidenhead council said that it would not comment on proceedings until there was an outcome from the inspector.

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