The York Council is refusing to say when the former elderly person’s home at Oliver House will be brought back into use. The last residents moved out in April 2012.
Oliver House is located at the end of Priory Street in a prime City centre location near the Bar Walls. It has been valued at over £1 million.
It appears that the only occupants were a “secured by occupation” group who – in return for free accommodation – provide a security presence at the site.
The planning application for the project was approved in February. The cost to remodel the building had by then increased to £1.3 million with most apparently to come from ”loans, grants and local businesses”.
It was unclear who would pay for the running costs of the project.
Despite being asked for an explanation of the delays at two successive Council meetings, Labour Councillors have remained tight lipped.
Now a Freedom of Information request has been submitted to the Council. This will force the Authority to reveal its plans within the next 4 weeks.
With over half the people registered on the housing waiting list requiring single bedroomed accommodation, many residents are puzzled why prime sites like these are not being scheduled for residential use ahead of green field sites.
To leave a building like this empty for over 18 months, and apparently with no prospect of occupation for at least another year, is shameful.