An underground storm water tank is to be built in rural Chorley to reduce the risk of sewage flowing into the River Douglas.
Water supplier United Utilities has been granted permission to carry out the work on land off Old School Lane in Adlington, where other wastewater facilities are already located.
But members of Lancashire County Council’s development control committee voted to restrict the times when construction vehicles can enter and leave the site, because of concerns over the safety of pupils travelling to and from the nearby Adlington Primary School.
HGV vehicle movements - of which there could be up to 60 per day during the most intensive phases of the three-month construction period - will not be permitted between 8.30-9.30am and 2.30-3.30pm.
Chorley Council objected to the proposed use of Park Road as the main access route for the site, stating that it was “unsuitable for large volumes of HGVs”. However, the committee was told that the only other alternative - Red House Bridge - was too narrow in parts to accommodate traffic for the site and that attempts to secure access via private land had failed.
Members approved the construction of several kiosks needed as part of the new infrastructure. However, the 5,500 cubic metre storm tank did not, in itself, require planning permission - because of the fact that it will be built beneath the surface.
The work is required in order for the company to comply with new industry standards and is intended to reduce the risk of sewage spilling into the River Douglas via the current overflow system.
The new tank will hold sewage water during so-called “storm conditions” and then pump it back into sewer network instead of discharging it. The development was deemed to have demonstrated the “very special circumstances” which have to apply in order for planning permission in the greenbelt to be granted.
The work will require the removal of more than a dozen trees, but these are set to be replaced and the newly-raised ground level blended in with the surrounding area when construction is completed.
A condition has also been imposed on the company to install wheel-washing facilities on the site while it is being built.
“That’s important because the track [the vehicles] are going down will add a lot of mud to them, because there doesn’t seem to be any asphalt on it at all,” committee member Stephen Clarke said.
More than 20,000 cubic metres of excavated material will have to be removed from the site in order to install the storm tank.