Hundreds of houses planned for Morley farmland

Leeds Municipal Hall

A request for reserved questions from Persimmon Homes is expected to be sent to the authority’s town planning committee, where members will discuss plans for the site off Victoria Road, Churwell.

Council planning officers say they have encouraged the developer to reduce the number of houses offered in the development and have suggested that councilors approve the plans in principle.

But hundreds of neighboring residents opposed the plans, which would be built on green land under the electricity pylons.

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According to a report by Leeds City Council officials, the development will consist of 23 two-bedroom apartments, eight two-bedroom bungalows, 102 two-bedroom semi / terrace houses, 125 three-bedroom semi / terrace houses, 84 single-family houses in three bedrooms and 108 four semi bed / terrace / independent houses.

The council’s own rules require that 15% of new construction be classified as affordable housing (20% cheaper than local market rates) – 68 of those homes would fall into this bracket.

A report on the plans stated: “The site consists primarily of agricultural fields which are used for grazing and associated with Broad Oaks Farm and the cluster of farm buildings which lie to the east, outside the boundary of the Red Line. .

“The site also includes high voltage overhead power lines, which run through it from southeast to west, before continuing in adjacent housing development across the Westwood Side.”

This meeting will put an end to two years of exchanges between the promoters and the agents of the town hall of Leeds.

According to a council document, the application was first filed in July 2019 for 526 housing units.

Council planning officers eventually told Persimmon that “a number of units” would have to be removed from the plans, as this would mean “over-development” of the site.

Updated versions of the plans were unsuccessfully presented to council agents: in September 2019 (which removed nine units) and November 2019 (which removed six others).

Revised plans were then submitted in March 2020, with the number of units reduced to 486. The program was, however, still considered unsatisfactory and applicants were informed that authorization would be refused.

The applicant has since revised the program again to provide 450 homes in March 2021.

Despite this, however, hundreds of objections were still received from nearby residents and councilors, while another letter was copied and signed by over 1,000 people.

The complaints range from allegations that development is not sustainable, concerns that the site is under power pylons, the loss of green space, environmental problems and insufficient infrastructure to support such important development.

Site plans date back to 2017, when developers received building permission for up to 550 housing units – this means that construction on the site has been approved in principle, subject to the submission of more detailed plans.

Leeds City Council planning officers found the plans acceptable and encouraged councilors to approve the development.

One report stated: “The amended proposal is considered acceptable in terms of scale, density, layout and design details of the proposed accommodation.

“The changes in demand have considerably reduced the number of dwellings on the site (by about 18% compared to the density authorized at the sketch stage), resulting in a satisfactory layout offering a good housing mix required. within the area.

“The site is an important strategic housing site, and the largest allocation in the South Leeds area and overall housing design, as well as the proposed layout, provide a housing plan that meets the general character.

“Taking into account all other matters, the proposal is considered acceptable and recommended for approval with conditions. “

Advisors are recommended to approve plans in principle and leave the final details of the agreement to planning officers – known as “defer and delegate”.

Terms that are expected to be added to the agreement include details on parking lot layout, landscaping of a proposed school site nearby, and affordable housing mobility.

Leeds City Council’s city plans panel is expected to discuss the plans on Thursday 8 July.

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