Just before Christmas the Site Allocation Plan Inspectors asked Leeds City Council to let them have the housing sites, including any Green Belt sites, that LCC wanted to develop before 2023 to fulfil a housing need target to that date (43,750) – based on an overall target 2012 – 2028 of 70,000 net.
A week or so ago the Inspectors gave Leeds City Council an indication of their thoughts on that list and other main modifications to the plan to make it legal or ‘sound’. It is important to note that Inspector’s do not report on plan improvements, only what makes a plan legal or not legal. The plan is for Leeds City Council to decide and justify.
A number of Green Belt sites around Leeds have been removed from the plan including some Aireborough sites. However, this revised plan still includes four important Aireborough Green Belt sites which are due now for development before 2023.
- Birks Farm, Ings Lane – building here will join up Guiseley and Menston whilst the site is a flood plain for Mire Beck. (Planning rules say flood plains should be avoided and development on GB should not join communities.) (160 houses)
- Wills Gill – the site here is behind the medieval tofts and crofts which Historic England say should not have any encroaching urban development in a wide buffer, which means the site has no obvious means of access. (133 houses)
- The top of Hollins Hill near the top of Park Road which is a Special Landscape Area and listed as West Yorkshire Strategic Green Infrastructure, as well as part of a working farm. Leeds have not conducted an historic impact assessment despite several listed building and conservation areas around the site. (80 houses)
- Victoria Avenue Yeadon, right next to the Airport runway and above Tarnfield Park. (102 houses)
The plan also includes Silverdale Allotments, for 32 houses, although this is a greenfield not a Green Belt site.
Overall, Aireborough is now due to have 502 more houses built before 2023 – 425 on Green Belt sites and the rest on brownfield sites.
Yesterday, 14th January, Leeds City Council Executive Board approved this revised Site Allocation Plan. There will now be another 6 week public consultation on this plan starting next week on 21st January and last for 6 weeks until the beginning of March. Responses will go back to the Planning Inspectors who are due to then produce their final report. You will find the relevant Executive Board papers from yesterday here .
Once we have digested the information in the consultation we will inform you on this website of our thoughts. In the meantime we can only suggest you make any concerns known to the relevant local MP (Stuart Andrew or Alex Sobel), Ward Councillors, Leader of the Council and Leeds Executive Board (Cllr Judith Blake), or Leeds Chief Executive Officer (Tom Riordan) emails are available on LCC’s website.
You may at this point want to look at the latest air pollution figures recorded in the summer of 2018 around our roads. We did think of illustrating this article with the following picture.