PLANS for an access road into York Central have come under fresh fire at a heated public meeting.

Almost 100 residents attended the packed Holgate ward committee meeting for a discussion about the three possible routes into the redevelopment site which have been suggested by the York Central Partnership.

Ben Hall, chairman of Holgate Community Garden – which would be destroyed if an access route from Holgate Road is chosen - said the meeting became ‘quite heated’ as a series of criticisms were made.

He said people were unhappy at the partnership’s decision to discount the option of creating an access road through Holgate Business Park, as they felt it would have taken the road away from communities and green space.

People felt the reasons presented so far for abandoning this option were inadequate, he said.

He added that people felt the partnership’s “impact analysis” was flawed, basing red, amber or green ratings on questionable judgements and an incomplete picture of the York Central site, and there was a lack of detailed information.

Residents also felt publicity about the consultation was poor and were sceptical about the public consultation exercise, feeling it was an exercise being carried out to support a decision already taken.

Holgate councillor Mary Cannon, who chaired the meeting, which was held at the National Railway Museum, said more than 90 members of the public attended.

She said concerns were raised that the new road would worsen existing noise and air pollution problems.

A spokesman for the York Central Partnership - which wants to see up to 1,500 new homes and 100,000 square metres of commercial space on the land behind York Railway Station - said it was happy to attend the ward meeting to make a presentation on the access options, answer residents’ questions and hear their views.

“There was a high volume of questions and many opinions shared, many of which had already been raised at the four consultation events,” he said.

“Where possible questions were answered, but in some cases it is too early in the process to provide the information that some people requested.

"As plans develop we will continue to provide that information as appropriate.

“We’d like to thank Cllrs Mary Cannon, Fiona Derbyshire and Sonja Crisp for the opportunity to attend the meeting and we look forward to continuing to consult on the evolving masterplan.”