The decision on controversial plans to build dozens of new homes in the cramped Garston estate has been delayed again.

Disappointed residents of Boundary Way said the application to build 56 new homes, which has come before the committee three times in different forms, should have finally been refused.

Councillors on the Three Rivers District Council planning committee undertook a site visit last Monday to gain a better understanding of how the Watford Community Housing Trust proposals would impact the estate and its residents.

But they still felt unable to make a decision as questions about parking, greenery, amenity spaces and whether the site could accommodate the number of new homes proposed remained.

Resident Cathy Birch pleaded with the committee to refuse planning permission.

She said: "What the trust is proposing to do is to overdevelop an area that is already built to capacity, cramming more properties into an already packed estate, replacing single storey blocks of garages with two storey blocks of flats that will impede the sun, light, air and views that we currently barely get to enjoy due to the nonstandard design and build of the estate."

She continued: "What precious little green areas and play areas we have are being taken away and more concrete poured. How is this green and environmentally friendly? This is against everything that we try to instil in our children. Where do the children get to run and play in the areas where they live? This is a u-turn by the trust who said that we would enjoy more green grass areas.

"We totally understand that there is a need for housing, we get that, but please - not on Boundary Way."

Across the estate, which spans Three Rivers and Watford Borough, WCHT plans to build 56 new homes, renew two playing areas and build a new community garden, as well as a new shop and community centre.

Three Rivers District Council had recommended the committee grant permission.

Gareth Lewis spoke on behalf of the applicant.

He said: "Our scheme provides more affordable houses, an improved overall parking facility and an increase in better quality amenity space.

"The application has had a positive response, it meets with council policy and the council has told us it is well designed.

"These are relevant proposals and we hope it commends itself to you for approval."

Councillor Ann Shaw moved to defer the decision to the next committee meeting in September, which was unanimously agreed by the rest of the committee.

The committee had more questions including how many parking spaces would be created in the plans and whether this was enough for current and future residents, whether the amenity spaces were appropriate and whether there were too many properties for the size of plot.

The committee also wanted further time to think over whether a section 106 agreement should be an added condition. Currently there is no such agreement, which means the housing association is not obligated to make a contribution to the education of children who may move to the estate, for example by providing transport to nearby schools.

The Boundary Way application was deferred to the next planning committee meeting on September 18.