Go-ahead at last for 744 Leeds homes

  • Tweaked design was a “significant response” to previous concerns
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PLANS for a 744-home development in Leeds have been given the go-ahead by planning chiefs at the third attempt - after the council drafted in a renowned civic architect to help tweak the design.

The proposals for hundreds of flats in Sweet Street, in the Holbeck Urban Village area, had been deferred by a Leeds council plans panel in January for further talks with the developer. This was after the application attracted criticism from the panel for its “uninspiring” design, and wider concerns about the seemingly small amount of car parking.

There was, however, agreement that the overall scheme would be welcome in an area where development had recently stalled and new housing was in huge demand.

A previous planning consent for the 4.7 acre Sweet Street site was never progressed beyond the drawing board due to the recession.

After January’s deferral, Leeds City Council drafted in renowned former civic architect John Thorp to offer advice on amending some of the unpopular elements, like jutting concrete ledges.

Mr Thorp told the council’s City Plans Panel there had been a “significant response” to previous concerns. As a result, the design was given approval, subject to the signing of a community contributions package.

Speaking after the decision, councillor Caroline Gruen, a member of the decision-making panel, said the amended design was less “lazy” and more “in keeping” with the city’s vision.

A spokesperson for developers Dandara had previously pledged to “address the comments made” and “revise our proposal over the next few weeks”.

The proposal also includes two public gardens.