Huge new housing development at Cleadon Lane Industrial Estate in East Boldon set for approval, despite hundreds of objections
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South Tyneside Council’s planning department received an application for land and buildings at part of Cleadon Lane Industrial Estate, off Cleadon Lane.
The industrial estate sits on the edge of East Boldon with the northern part earmarked for housing under proposals from Avant Homes.
Original proposals from developers aimed to demolish remaining buildings on the vacant land and to transform the site into a 245-home estate.
During the application process, the number of homes was amended to a final total of 202, with a mix of 18 apartments and 184 houses now proposed.
Following consultation on the plans, the housing scheme sparked significant opposition with 289 letters of objection against 19 letters of support.
Concerns ranged from increased pressure on school places and health services to increased traffic and air pollution, parking issues, harm to wildlife and loss of employment land.
Other concerns included “inadequate drainage infrastructure leading to increased likelihood of further untreated sewage discharges into the sea and water courses” alongside concerns about loss of trees and the “erosion of Green Belt between East Boldon and Cleadon”.
Objectors listed in council documents included Cleadon and East Boldon’s three ward councillors, ward residents and campaign groups including South Tyneside Tree Action Group and South Tyneside Environmental Protection, as well as the East Boldon Neighbourhood Forum and Seaham Town Council.
Elsewhere, letters of support said the development would have a positive economic impact on the area and would be a “visual improvement compared to [an] unsightly industrial estate”.
A 125-page report on the planning application is due to be discussed by South Tyneside Council’s Planning Committee next week.
Council planning officers have recommended the plans for approval, subject to a number of planning conditions and a Section 106 legal agreement.
If plans are approved, the legal agreement would allow South Tyneside Council to secure cash from developers to help reduce the housing development’s impact and make it acceptable in planning terms.
This would include the development delivering 23% affordable housing, equating to 46 units, a contribution of £81,406 towards “ecology coastal mitigation” and travel cards for first occupiers of new homes to encourage public transport use.
In addition, the development would secure around £1million for education provision, with £616,405 for primary school places and £409,200 for secondary school places.
Developers are also expected to “cover the full cost” of the council progressing and implementing traffic regulation orders to introduce 20mph speed limits on roads within the development.
If deemed necessary when the development is completed, contributions could be used to “discourage commuter car parking associated with those using the nearby East Boldon Metro Station”, to reduce the speed limit on Cleadon Lane in the vicinity of the site and to introduce new bus stop locations.
Council planners, in a committee report, said the proposals from Avant Homes would contribute towards housing targets and reduce the council’s current housing shortfall.
It was also noted that the “loss of part of this relatively small employment site from the council’s portfolio of employment land is not considered to outweigh the very substantial need for new housing supply in the borough”.
The council report added: “With regard to the natural environment and environmental protection matters the proposals are acceptable in ecology terms subject to conditions and a contribution being secured for off-site mitigation in respect of coastal recreational disturbance and also acceptable in respect of green infrastructure, ground noise and air pollution, drainage and minerals safeguarding matters subject to conditions.
“The proposals for the small area of the site within the Green Belt are considered to be appropriate development in the Green Belt”.
The final decision on the planning application rests with councillors on South Tyneside Council’s Planning Committee, who will next meet on Monday, February 13.
The meeting is scheduled to start from 10am at South Shields Town Hall and will be open to the public.