Plans for new cycling base for tourists withdrawn
PLANS to create a new cycling base for visitors to York in the build-up to the city welcoming the Tour de France have been withdrawn.
The proposals for a "touring cyclist stop" next to Weir Pond Nurseries in Holtby - which would provide "dedicated accommodation" for cyclists all year round - were submitted to City of York Council earlier this year, with applicants Trevor and Chloe Smith asking for initial permission to operate it for three years and then make it permanent if it proved a success.
However, the application has been withdrawn after the council's flood risk management team said that while the Holtby Lane site was in a "low-risk" flood area, not enough information had been provided to assess the impact of the scheme on drainage networks.
The Environment Agency has also lodged an objection over water pollution issues should the application be submitted again.
In a statement to council planners when the proposals first emerged, planning consultants O'Neill Associates said: "The cycle stop will be an innovative concept, unique in the York area.
"It will provide basic, comfortable and affordable overnight and short-stay accommodation tailored to the needs of cyclists and marketed solely to cyclists. The proposals are designed to specifically meet the demand from cyclists requiring overnight stays when travelling the Way of the Roses coast-to-coast route and from cyclists seeking accommodation close to local cycle routes and country lanes."
O'Neill Associates said Sustrans, British Cycling and Welcome to Yorkshire had supported the plans, and the stop would have 12 "camping pods" and an amenity block.
The firm said one manager's position and two part-time jobs would be created and more roles could follow in the future, saying: "The proposals are consistent with the agenda to promote York as a cycling city and build a legacy from the Tour de France Grand Depart, helping to position the area as an inspiring destination for cycling,"
In a letter backing the plans, York Outer MP Julian Sturdy said the scheme could "contribute significantly to the local economy" and add to its tourism sector. Other supporters said they believed the cycle stop should be marketed and made available to residents as well as visitors.
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