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Tories in call for community stadium inquiry
10:00am Friday 15th June 2012 in News
YORK’S main opposition political group has called for the Government to stage a public inquiry over plans for a community stadium and two superstores on the edge of the city.
Oakgate (Monks Cross) Ltd’s proposals for a 6,000-seater arena to house York City FC and York City Knights, alongside John Lewis and Marks & Spencer stores, were approved by City of York Council last month.
The Department for Communities and Local Government must now decide whether the scheme is “called in”. The deadline for representations to the Government is today, with a decision expected within a month.
The council’s Conservative group has written to Communities and Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles listing 14 reasons why it believes an inquiry should be held.
It said the scheme “goes against York’s planning policy”, would cause “severe harm” to York’s road network and cause the city centre to lose an annual £50-90 million in revenue.
The Tories’ reasons also included the lack of a recommendation by planning officers on Oakgate’s scheme, adding councillors “never had a vote on the overall project early in the process”.
They claimed the jobs created by the scheme would be offset by city-centre losses and the “true potential financial costs to the council were never put before residents”.