New twist ahead of crunch South Shields meeting over Holborn housing plan
The hybrid application includes full planning permission for phase one residential development for 48 dwellings and outline planning permission for around 300 homes across phases two and three.
Keepmoat Homes Ltd and Cussins (North East) Ltd have been developing the scheme and are the official applicants.
Council chiefs previously said the housing plans would transform a derelict brownfield site while attracting more residents and footfall to South Shields town centre in the process.
However, the proposals have sparked opposition from neighbours due to plans to build over a play park and green space between Laygate Street and Commercial Road in phase one.
The housing proposals will go before South Tyneside Council’s Planning Committee for decision at a crunch meeting next week.
According to a report prepared for the panel, formal objections have been received from 71 different addresses, alongside a petition with 1,053 signatures.
Objections have been received from several councillors, including Simonside and Rekendyke ward councillor Ed Malcolm who has requested to speak at the meeting.
A representation has also been received from the Port of Tyne raising issues with the proposal “having the potential to affect their ability to bring forward the former McNulty site for future development”.
Earlier in November, protesters took to the steps of South Shields Town Hall to voice their concerns about losing their “treasured” green space forever.
Local campaigners said they supported the wider redevelopment of the Holborn site but were only looking to save a small section of open space threatened by the 48 houses in phase one.
Although developers have incorporated a play area into the scheme by reducing the number of new dwellings proposed, locals see this as a “downgraded” facility that would not meet the needs of older children.
Despite the recommendation from planning officers, councillors on the planning committee will have the final say on the proposals.
Any approval would be subject to a legal agreement to secure financial contributions from developers to reduce the impact of the new homes.
This includes £403 “per dwelling” to “mitigate the recreational impacts” on the Durham Coast Special Area of Conservation and Northumbria Coast Special Protection Area.
In addition, around £27,287 would be earmarked for the “construction, improvement, maintenance, renewal or replacement of a playing pitch or pitches (including any artificial pitch) within the inner and outer South Shields area.”
A report from council planners adds that the principle of housing on the Holborn site would be acceptable.
It reads: “The proposed development would positively contribute towards the borough’s housing land supply and it sits within land that is expressly allocated in the adopted LDF South Shields Town Centre and Waterfront Area Action for development; and that includes the provision of new housing.”
South Tyneside Council’s planning committee will decide on the proposals on Monday, November 22.
The meeting starts at 10am at South Shields Town Hall and for more information, visit www.southtyneside.gov.uk/article/60650/Upcoming-committee-meetings