The Environment Agency has withdrawn its objection to a proposal for a motorway service station.

The authority had concerns relating to an application for a service station on green belt land at junction 20 for the M25 near Kings Langley.

Moto has applied to Three Rivers District Council for outline planning permission for a new motorway service area, which would include an 80-bed hotel, drive thru coffee unit, petrol station, shops, food outlets, and parking.

A new roundabout would also be created on the A41 accessing the site between Langleybury Lane and the M25.

The Environment Agency's objection was among more than 1,300 to building a service station – most of the objections have come from residents.

Watford Observer:

Artist impression of a motorway service station near Kings Langley

When it officially lodged its objection in May 2019, the agency told the council it had concerns about the risks to groundwater and also said there was a lack of information about how the development would minimise, prevent, or control pollution.

The agency continued its negative stance on the plans in September and in November.

A meeting was held between Moto and the Environment Agency in December to discuss why the agency's objections, but despite the applicants consequently making amendments to its plans, the agency refused to remove its objection in February this year.

But earlier this month, the agency confirmed to the council it was now in a position to remove its objections – although it says further detailed information is required before any development can be undertaken.

The agency has also attached a number of conditions.

The agency’s report can be read here and all documents relating to this application can be found here.

Watford Observer:

The application site. Credit: Google Street View

However, Affinity Water has refused to remove its objection to the plans despite the applicant responding to the company’s concerns.

The water supplier has concerns because the proposed development is situated within 500 metres of its public water supply abstraction boreholes.

Affinity Water’s full response can be read here.

The planning application was expected to be decided on earlier this year but consultee objections and Covid-19 has delayed proceedings.

The application is expected to be discussed by the planning committee in October.

This is not the only service station being proposed on this stretch of the M25.

Rival company Extra has submitted plans to Buckinghamshire Council for a service station near junction 16, close to Maple Cross.

Watford Observer:

The proposal for an Extra near junction 16

A need has been identified for a service station on the stretch of M25 between the M40 and M1 but only one can realistically go ahead.

It is unknown when the Extra proposal will be determined by Buckinghamshire Council.

The council has been approached for details of when it may it may be decided by the planning committee.