Major housing scheme for land off Lukes Lane, in Hebburn, approved by South Tyneside planning chiefs
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It has granted permission for 127 homes – a mix of two-, three- and four-bedroom properties – to be built on the site between Lukes Lane and Leam Lane.
Concerns had been raised over increased traffic and congestion, with a previous decision deadline pushed back to allow more investigation by borough planning officers.
The panel approved the application by majority vote on Monday (November 21) on the advice of the local authority’s planning department, which claimed the scheme’s benefits, including the delivery of new housing, would outweigh impacts including the loss of allocated employment land.
Cllr Geraldine Kilgour, who led calls for the plans to be approved, said the scheme would deliver “biodiversity net gain”, with a fifth allocated for ‘affordable housing’, as well as reducing pressure for development on Green Belt sites elsewhere in the borough.
Others raised concerns, however, such as Cllr Paul Brenen, who asked for a decision to be delayed while the Government reviews its development policies.
Cllr Wilf Flynn raised concerns about the lack of school places in the area to meet the demands of new housing, while Cllr Paul Dean repeated concerns about the impact of the project on the wider highways network.
Council planners told the committee eight public objections were not classed as a “substantial amount”, given the scale of the plans and compared to other proposed developments elsewhere in the borough.
After being put to the vote, the housing scheme was approved by councillors, with seven votes in favour and three against.
The approval is subject to the completion of a legal agreement securing cash and other measures from developers to make the scheme acceptable.
This includes the provision of 20% given over for ‘affordable housing’, funding for off-site street lighting and £288,000 to secure “compensatory grassland or other suitable habitat off-site” in South Tyneside.
Other aspects include developers meeting council costs to implement a 20mph speed limit within the development site and on Lukes Lane between its junction with Holmes Drive and its junction with the main site access.
The proposed affordable homes on site would also be a mix of affordable rented and discount market value.
A spokesperson for Barratt Developments North East , said: “We’re pleased with the outcome of today’s planning meeting.
“The approval will enable us to provide much-needed high-quality family homes for local residents, a quarter of which will be affordable housing. The construction works will create 120 jobs for local people.
“Alongside the new housing, we have plans to secure a 20mph speed limit, and to install road humps and new street lighting to improve road safety for local residents. There will also be wider cycle lanes and footpaths.
“We will also contribute over £280,000 to secure an area of greenspace that will enable local wildlife to flourish.
“We look forward to meeting the need for housing and contributing to the local community.”