Affordable flats behind Fenwick Street set to get go ahead despite local objections

Residents who are up in arms about the proposals to build on Fenwick Street Green

Residents who are up in arms about the proposals to build on Fenwick Street Green

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CONTROVERSIAL plans for two blocks of flats on open space near York's Rowntree Park look set to win the go-ahead today, despite furious objections from local residents.

A report to City of York Council's area planning sub-committee says the proposals for eight affordable two-bedroom apartments behind Fenwick Street have attracted 38 objections and a petition signed by 36 people.

Many complained about the loss of valued open space and a children's play area, but also claimed the building would be too large and high, affecting the view from the park.

There were also concerns about increased pressure on parking in the area, road safety problems during construction and flood risks in the area, although one letter of support was received from someone who said they recognised the need for more affordable housing.

York Central MP Hugh Bayley also wrote to say he acknowledged the need for affordable housing but asked members to consider the height of the development in relation to adjacent properties and look at a re-design to allow part of the green to be retained as a public open space.

One resident, Nicola Thomis, 33, told The Press earlier this year that children loved to play on the open space in the summer, and the proposed 'monstrosity' would make the street feel hemmed in.

But the report to councillors by development management officer Fiona Mackay says there are few sites suitable for the development of new social housing and Fenwick Street has been identified as one such site to meet the needs of people on the housing waiting list.

Recommending councillors approve the scheme, she acknowledges the site is a valued and popular open space in the locality, but points out that Rowntree Park also provides recreational facilities and open space.

"Given the proximity to Rowntree Park with its range of facilities for formal and informal play, it is considered that the need for affordable housing would outweigh the level of harm to local amenity," she says.

"On balance, it is considered that the residential use of the site would be appropriate in this largely residential area....It is considered that the proposed residential development would be of a scale, design, and layout that would fit comfortably within its suburban surroundings."

Comments (8)

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4:52pm Thu 4 Sep 14

bravo whisky says...

Labour councillor Simpson Laing will be jumping for joy. More affordable housing, Wow!!!! and to hell with the objectors.
Labour councillor Simpson Laing will be jumping for joy. More affordable housing, Wow!!!! and to hell with the objectors. bravo whisky
  • Score: -11

5:54pm Thu 4 Sep 14

bloodaxe says...

You just can't win on this site. If not enough affordable homes are built then it's houses for toffs; if affordable housing is proposed then the locals don't want it. I have the impression that there is no proposed housebuilding, anywhere, which has approval from people who already have homes.
You just can't win on this site. If not enough affordable homes are built then it's houses for toffs; if affordable housing is proposed then the locals don't want it. I have the impression that there is no proposed housebuilding, anywhere, which has approval from people who already have homes. bloodaxe
  • Score: 37

8:35pm Thu 4 Sep 14

popsiclesnsticks says...

The negative impacts of building on The Green are too numerous to mention. I understand that the positive is that there will be eight dwellings available. However, in the city, there is so little green that I believe we should (and thought the council policy was to) sustain all of it. There are loads of other sites that people would have no objections to being used - sites that could be made more aesthetically pleasing by building on them and sites that are not in the midde of an already very high density area.
We will not be letting this happen easily - so the council are in for the fight. Let's hope that they change their mind and withdraw the application/plans.
The negative impacts of building on The Green are too numerous to mention. I understand that the positive is that there will be eight dwellings available. However, in the city, there is so little green that I believe we should (and thought the council policy was to) sustain all of it. There are loads of other sites that people would have no objections to being used - sites that could be made more aesthetically pleasing by building on them and sites that are not in the midde of an already very high density area. We will not be letting this happen easily - so the council are in for the fight. Let's hope that they change their mind and withdraw the application/plans. popsiclesnsticks
  • Score: 19

9:31pm Thu 4 Sep 14

notpedallingpaul says...

popsiclesnsticks wrote:
The negative impacts of building on The Green are too numerous to mention. I understand that the positive is that there will be eight dwellings available. However, in the city, there is so little green that I believe we should (and thought the council policy was to) sustain all of it. There are loads of other sites that people would have no objections to being used - sites that could be made more aesthetically pleasing by building on them and sites that are not in the midde of an already very high density area.
We will not be letting this happen easily - so the council are in for the fight. Let's hope that they change their mind and withdraw the application/plans.
I have to agree with you there, it's not about objecting to any housing development as some people intimate at, but to build on a community space is frankly beyond me, I am sure there are other sites as you say that would be suitable, and it's almost as if this council do things like this on purpose just to make a point.
[quote][p][bold]popsiclesnsticks[/bold] wrote: The negative impacts of building on The Green are too numerous to mention. I understand that the positive is that there will be eight dwellings available. However, in the city, there is so little green that I believe we should (and thought the council policy was to) sustain all of it. There are loads of other sites that people would have no objections to being used - sites that could be made more aesthetically pleasing by building on them and sites that are not in the midde of an already very high density area. We will not be letting this happen easily - so the council are in for the fight. Let's hope that they change their mind and withdraw the application/plans.[/p][/quote]I have to agree with you there, it's not about objecting to any housing development as some people intimate at, but to build on a community space is frankly beyond me, I am sure there are other sites as you say that would be suitable, and it's almost as if this council do things like this on purpose just to make a point. notpedallingpaul
  • Score: -13

7:51am Fri 5 Sep 14

york central says...

popsiclesnsticks wrote:
The negative impacts of building on The Green are too numerous to mention. I understand that the positive is that there will be eight dwellings available. However, in the city, there is so little green that I believe we should (and thought the council policy was to) sustain all of it. There are loads of other sites that people would have no objections to being used - sites that could be made more aesthetically pleasing by building on them and sites that are not in the midde of an already very high density area.
We will not be letting this happen easily - so the council are in for the fight. Let's hope that they change their mind and withdraw the application/plans.
This site is within what id describe as a council type estate already.
Its within 50 yrds of Rowntrees Park, plenty of green there.
[quote][p][bold]popsiclesnsticks[/bold] wrote: The negative impacts of building on The Green are too numerous to mention. I understand that the positive is that there will be eight dwellings available. However, in the city, there is so little green that I believe we should (and thought the council policy was to) sustain all of it. There are loads of other sites that people would have no objections to being used - sites that could be made more aesthetically pleasing by building on them and sites that are not in the midde of an already very high density area. We will not be letting this happen easily - so the council are in for the fight. Let's hope that they change their mind and withdraw the application/plans.[/p][/quote]This site is within what id describe as a council type estate already. Its within 50 yrds of Rowntrees Park, plenty of green there. york central
  • Score: 0

8:56am Fri 5 Sep 14

meme says...

There is a balance here
brownfield vs opening up greenfield sites.
Lets face it some greenfield has to go but CC is the way to go even when controversial.
every development upsets someone as we are a densely packed city and no one wants their equilibrium altered where they live. its a fact of life.
In my view we should enlarge the city by building on what is known as green belt but is not but ensure that the developments are of such a quality that al are happy with them
The proposal nationally to match each plot built on with actual open space is a great one. greenery is what makes our environment acceptable and this is what should be provided rather than the payment which developers have to make towards public open space when they develop which just goes to maintain existing space ....ie does not provide more....... which is what was meant to happen and just subsidises the councils existing budgets.
There is a balance here brownfield [or call it CC sites] vs opening up greenfield sites. Lets face it some greenfield has to go but CC is the way to go even when controversial. every development upsets someone as we are a densely packed city and no one wants their equilibrium altered where they live. its a fact of life. In my view we should enlarge the city by building on what is known as green belt but is not [its going to happen sometime] but ensure that the developments are of such a quality that al are happy with them The proposal nationally to match each plot built on with actual open space is a great one. greenery is what makes our environment acceptable and this is what should be provided rather than the payment which developers have to make towards public open space when they develop which just goes to maintain existing space ....ie does not provide more....... which is what was meant to happen and just subsidises the councils existing budgets. meme
  • Score: 3

1:21pm Fri 5 Sep 14

tessah-York says...

I don't object to building - but with the number of empty buildings around, I don't understand why it's necessary for new build on greens, why not use what is already built and convert to afforable housing?
I don't object to building - but with the number of empty buildings around, I don't understand why it's necessary for new build on greens, why not use what is already built and convert to afforable housing? tessah-York
  • Score: 4

3:34pm Fri 5 Sep 14

popsiclesnsticks says...

york central wrote:
popsiclesnsticks wrote:
The negative impacts of building on The Green are too numerous to mention. I understand that the positive is that there will be eight dwellings available. However, in the city, there is so little green that I believe we should (and thought the council policy was to) sustain all of it. There are loads of other sites that people would have no objections to being used - sites that could be made more aesthetically pleasing by building on them and sites that are not in the midde of an already very high density area.
We will not be letting this happen easily - so the council are in for the fight. Let's hope that they change their mind and withdraw the application/plans.
This site is within what id describe as a council type estate already.
Its within 50 yrds of Rowntrees Park, plenty of green there.
Whatever the demographics of the area, I'm not sure about the strength of reasoning behind saying that, if I interpret 'york central' correctly, if population density is already very high in an area, that makes it okay to cram in a few more houses...?
The Green is a 'community' space - I notice that this weekend Edible York are promoting urban green spaces being used for veg and fruit growing. with one major positive about the project being the increased sense of community.
In terms of Rowntree's Park being nearby - yes, it is, and it's a fantastic resource for everyone (well, it is when it's open, and it is when it's not flooded....) so that is one argument. But, again, The Green promotes community cohesion and, without it, that will suffer.
I totally agree that we need more social housing, that is affordable (!) and I know that folks will be thinking it's a case of 'not in my back yard' - and, I agree, it is my 'back yard' and, if it were a case of families needing homes versus building on the one and ONLY suitable space, i.e. The Green. then I would understand. But there ARE other sites that could be used, and using those other sites would 'develop' those areas in a good way, not 'devolve' the area in a bad way.
Isn't it really basically all about money...?! The Council owns the Green already and I guess that they think that building a very few houses on it would earn them a big tick for providing social housing at a cheap cost. But I'm not so sure they understand the strength of 'community' feeling about this issue (which has been fostered by the very Green they want to rip up) or the level of resistance they will continue to meet if they don't drop the plans. I guess that's capitalism isn't it...? ..... I never did like Thatcher.....
[quote][p][bold]york central[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]popsiclesnsticks[/bold] wrote: The negative impacts of building on The Green are too numerous to mention. I understand that the positive is that there will be eight dwellings available. However, in the city, there is so little green that I believe we should (and thought the council policy was to) sustain all of it. There are loads of other sites that people would have no objections to being used - sites that could be made more aesthetically pleasing by building on them and sites that are not in the midde of an already very high density area. We will not be letting this happen easily - so the council are in for the fight. Let's hope that they change their mind and withdraw the application/plans.[/p][/quote]This site is within what id describe as a council type estate already. Its within 50 yrds of Rowntrees Park, plenty of green there.[/p][/quote]Whatever the demographics of the area, I'm not sure about the strength of reasoning behind saying that, if I interpret 'york central' correctly, if population density is already very high in an area, that makes it okay to cram in a few more houses...? The Green is a 'community' space - I notice that this weekend Edible York are promoting urban green spaces being used for veg and fruit growing. with one major positive about the project being the increased sense of community. In terms of Rowntree's Park being nearby - yes, it is, and it's a fantastic resource for everyone (well, it is when it's open, and it is when it's not flooded....) so that is one argument. But, again, The Green promotes community cohesion and, without it, that will suffer. I totally agree that we need more social housing, that is affordable (!) and I know that folks will be thinking it's a case of 'not in my back yard' - and, I agree, it is my 'back yard' and, if it were a case of families needing homes versus building on the one and ONLY suitable space, i.e. The Green. then I would understand. But there ARE other sites that could be used, and using those other sites would 'develop' those areas in a good way, not 'devolve' the area in a bad way. Isn't it really basically all about money...?! The Council owns the Green already and I guess that they think that building a very few houses on it would earn them a big tick for providing social housing at a cheap cost. But I'm not so sure they understand the strength of 'community' feeling about this issue (which has been fostered by the very Green they want to rip up) or the level of resistance they will continue to meet if they don't drop the plans. I guess that's capitalism isn't it...? ..... I never did like Thatcher..... popsiclesnsticks
  • Score: 2
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