A row between a businessman and Planning over whether to "formalise" the use of a 40-year-old car park at Havre des Pas has hit the Royal Court.
The site, which sits along the Havre des Pas coastal road, was previously home to a coach station which burned down in the 1980s.
For 35 years after that, it was used as a hire car business depot without planning permission, before becoming a car park.
In 2021, Brigham Young of Sovereign Hire Cars put forward a planning application to “formalise” the decades-long use of the site, but it was refused in November of that year by the Planning Committee over concerns about traffic and pollution.
The Committee's decision was upheld six months later by the then-Environment Minister, John Young, prompting an appeal in the Royal Court yesterday.
Pictured: The row, which has been ongoing for around two years, made its way into the Royal Court yesterday.
Advocate Christopher Austin, representing Sovereign Hire Cars, said the Minister had erred in his interpretation of the Island Plan, and that this “rendered his decision irrational”.
During a series of legal discussions, the hearing focused on whether the move to become just a car park represented a change of use, and whether it encouraged an increased dependence on private cars that was at odds with planning policy.
On behalf of the Environment Minister, Advocate Duncan Mills said that the previous decisions had been based on the judgements of two qualified professionals, and that there was nothing irrational about the outcome.
Commissioner Matthew Thompson, sitting with Jurats Robert Christensen and Alison Opfermann, said that the panel would “reflect carefully” on the case, reserving the court's judgement until a later date.
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