No, basically the planning officer in charge of the application makes a recommendation to the committee on their opinion based on planning evidence. "Approve conditional" means the recommendation is to approve the application but with conditions as outlined in the officers statement. The committee is a panel which consists of borough and town councillors amongst others, and only applications which are "called in" or recieve TC obejction have to go before the committee rather than be decided by the officer.
Planning law is bewildering and is a confict of government, county council, highways, borough / district and town council objectives. When the original planning application was approved, it was an application that met government guildelines which at the time required (amongst other things) employment re-introduced on former employment land. They did this by providing these business units and multi-use homes nearby. The LPA will always approve something if they know the inspectorate would allow it on appeal, and had been down this route. Then the crunch happened, commercial property became a no-go, and understandably Wimpeys wanted to do something to try and shift the units, so lets not forget the previously refused application to keep the units commercial but lose the restrictive B1 usage. Now they are investigating residential usage and following the condition to keep the units on the market for a further six months, they want a decision made quicker than that so they can get on at the garrison site.
The council don't want property sat about empty because it can cause decay, vandalism, etc.
In other words, you cannot make everyone happy all of the time!!!