Plans for more than 100 homes have been turned down after councillors said it would add too much traffic to an already clogged “disaster zone” town.
Rainham representatives said allowing any more homes would impact the quality of life of residents with one branding the applications “foolish”.
They had been discussing plans to build on two separate sites; 48 homes on land between the A2 London Road and Seymour Road, and 66 homes between Moor Street and the A2.
Both proposals were discussed during a planning committee meeting last Thursday.
The plans for the 48 homes were submitted in outline, meaning a more detailed vision would come later. However, the developer set out how it wanted the site to be accessed from the A2.
Medway Council’s head of planning Dave Harris explained to the councillors the site is in a designated Area of Local Landscape Importance and is high-quality agricultural land, although it is currently not in use.
Ward councillor Cllr Gary Hackwell (Con) said it was unlikely anyone living at the site would walk into Rainham town centre as it is too far to walk, and therefore would be car dependent, adding: “The traffic is worse than not providing the houses.
“There’s been a lot of house building in Rainham; adding more and more in Rainham is not going to solve the problem in Medway.”
Fellow Rainham councillor Martin Potter (Con) said he felt it was “foolish” to build so close to the boundary with neighbouring Swale Borough Council.
He added: “Between this development [Seymour Road] and the development that’s the next item on the agenda [Moor Street], it would obliterate the Moor Street village hamlet and the heritage area.
“Rainham has been developed enormously over decades and we have seen quite a lot of development in recent years.
“The infrastructure in Rainham is finished. At peak times, it is a disaster zone and even more so at the moment – for the next four months – with Junction 5 being closed on the M2.
‘Development near the A2 is the last straw and I think the camel’s back has already been broken with regards to traffic’
“Any more development in Rainham is going to add to that severe congestion and add to that impact on the quality of life of people in Rainham and I think it is totally unacceptable.”
On the plans for Moor Street, Cllr Hackwell added: “The developments in Rainham, especially near the A2, is the last straw and I think the camel’s back has already been broken with regards to traffic.”
The plans included 25% affordable housing and a children’s play area; the houses would have been between one and four bedrooms.
The site which had been considered for development by Bellway neighbours the recently-opened Leigh Academy Rainham, and would have used the same access road.
Both applications were refused with 11 votes against and four in favour.