Leeds launches consultation on green belt sites
A PUBLIC consultation has been launched on Leeds City Council’s plans to retain 36 lots in the Green Belt, including four in Aireborough.
A town planning inspector tentatively backed the council’s proposal to keep the land within the city’s protected greenbelt under changes to the Leeds site allocation plan. The sites include Ings Lane, Hollins Hill, Wills Gill and Victoria Avenue in Aireborough.
The SAP, a key planning policy document that allocates land for future housing, jobs, offices, industry and retail, was adopted by the council in 2019. It included the removal of a total of 36 sites from the green belt for possible housing use. while a 37th was pulled from the green belt for a mix of potential housing use and employment.
But the council reconsidered the proposals after a successful legal challenge by the Aireborough Neighborhood Development Forum. A High Court ruling last year said the 37 sites should be temporarily removed from the SAP and returned to the green belt pending further review by the National Planning Inspectorate.
The council says that work with developers and landowners subsequently revealed that due to the changing nature of the local supply of land, Leeds would be able to meet its housing needs until 2028 without other green belt site releases.
The council developed proposals for changes to the SAP which were submitted to the Planning Inspectorate in March of this year.
The Planning Inspectorate has now agreed that, subject to public consultation, the council may retain the 36 housing allocation sites in the Green Belt and upgrade Barrowby Lane’s status from housing and employment to employment only. .
The council’s executive council approved a six-week public consultation on the proposed changes. The Planning Inspectorate will examine all the responses received and prepare a report. Hopefully this will allow the board to confirm the changes, giving it a fully adopted SAP.
Councilor Helen Hayden, executive member of Leeds City Council for Infrastructure and Climate, said:
“The site allocation plan has been a huge undertaking for the city council and will play a central role in shaping the future of our city.
“We are committed to doing all we can to provide the kind of housing and jobs that the people of Leeds need and deserve, and this document will help us achieve that through the leverage it carries in the determination planning requests. ”