Empty Chapelfields garage to be brought back into use after 12 month delay

Bramham Road empty garage

It looks like the long term empty garage in Bramham Road may finally be brought back into use.

It was reported as being empty and in need of repair over 12 months ago. Following a complaint about delays, repairs to the roof and stonework were completed.

The Council says that an order was placed with a local contractor to replace the door but the work was never completed.

It seems that no one followed this up until we reported the garage again a few months ago.

We’re now told that a new order for the door has been given to a contractor. It is expected to be repaired shortly and brought back into use in April.

There is a long waiting list of tenants in Chapelfields wanting to rent Council garages.

Nearby streets are sometimes choked with parked cars and there have also been ongoing delays in the provision of additional parking laybys on the estate.

Newbury Avenue

Garages to be demolished

The Council have appointed Transcore Ltd to build the 5 new bungalows scheduled to be constructed on the site of the Newbury Avenue garages.

The value of the contract is £731,505.90.  It is understood that separate contracts are being awarded for other work such as the demolition of the existing garages.

The works are currently held up following an administrative mistake which meant that movement of telecoms equipment, which needed to be moved before alternative parking provision could be made, wasn’t ordered soon enough.

The Council contract for the bungalows gives a target completion date of 3rd September 2019.

We understand that when demolition contractors removed the garage doors at Newbury Avenue they found a stolen car in one unit.

Separately, the Council have been served with a Freedom of Information request which seeks to explore why some Council garages have been left unused despite there being a waiting list of potential renters.

York Council tenants newsletter costs criticised

A quarterly Council newsletter for tenants – costing around £7000 an edition to design, print and deliver – has been criticised.

The Streets Ahead magazine has been produced for several years and was recently subject to a re-tendering exercise.

The contract – which was awarded to a local company – covers design, editorial, printing and publication of the magazine. In total the current contract is worth £86,716.00 over 4 years

Additional costs are involved in delivering the magazine to 8000 Council tenants.

The news sheet can also be read “on line

The Council has an inconsistent approach to providing tenants and residents with information. Housing staff rarely provide up to date information for the many public noticeboards that exist around the City.

Council web site garage leaflet. Not updated for over 6 months

Even the Council web site is sometimes hopelessly out of date.

For example, last year there was a major row when it was discovered that dozens of Council garages were lying empty despite there being a long waiting list of people wanting to rent them. The Council promised that information would be updated regularly.

6 months later and the leaflet displayed on the Councils web site has not been updated.

Potentially thousands of pounds a year in rental income is being lost while complaints about inadequate street parking continue to grow.

…and even  “Streets Ahead” isn’t being used to advertise the garage vacancies.