Approval for 437 homes on former east Leeds tank factory

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Plans to build more than 400 houses on the site of a former tank factory in east Leeds have finally been given the green light by planning chiefs.

Redrow Homes and Strata Homes had previously seen their plans to build 437 homes on the site of the former Vickers tank factory in Manston Lane rejected by the committee back in January.

But, after revamped plans were submitted by the developers, present members of Leeds City Council’s city plans panel unanimously approved the application.

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The site will feature a mix of one, two and three storey buildings, as well as green space, new roads and drainage at the site, known as Radial Park. It will also include 7.5 percent affordable housing, as well as improved accessibility for disabled people.

An artist's impression of how the site could look. (Credit: Redrow/Strata)An artist's impression of how the site could look. (Credit: Redrow/Strata)
An artist's impression of how the site could look. (Credit: Redrow/Strata) | other

Panel member Coun Kevin Ritchie (Lab) said: “I am happy with this application – I am thankful for the changes in accessibility to the properties. The fact we have got here through the plans panel process is a success and a credit.”

At a meeting in January, members agreed to defer the application, asking the applicants to address environmental, accessibility and design issues related to the site.

At the meeting this week, Coun Peter Gruen (Lab) said: “There is a message for all of us – when officers and their members stick out for quality and improvements, things can happen.

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“There is a lesson not to accept, but to push back. With climate change, members will need to continue to push back a lot.”

Coun Elizabeth Nash (Lab) had reservations about the plans, adding: “The roof scape ought to be better – it’s too uniform and too boring and too bland.

“Some of the houses are mean-looking, some of the homes that are smaller look like small mills, not homes.”

Coun Colin Campbell (Lib Dem) said: “If you asked me if it was perfect, I would say no it’s not.

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“But we can’t suddenly raise more issues that we would like to have raised then now.

“It’s not a perfect plan – there are issues around it I personally don’t like, but I accept the fact we have been through a process, and that process has led to major improvements in the design.

“I think we should get on with it and give them planning permission, for goodness sake.”

Coun Dan Cohen (Con) added: “The suggestion that we have not spent significant time on this app is grossly unfair on this panel.

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“This has moved a tremendous distance since October last year. This is not perfect, however, I am yet to see a perfect planning application anywhere in the city. It is vastly improved and, I think, quite attractive.”

The committee agreed to approve the plans in principle, delegating the final decision to council planning officers, subject to conditions.