The York Council has released more details of the assessments that it has made of requests by landowners for particular sites to be considered for development.
They are relevant though in so far as they provide an indication of the landowner’s development aspirations. They are likely to reappear at the Public Inquiry later in the year when owners will try to have additional development land added to the Plan.
39 sites, including one off Askham Lane, were rejected because they failed to respect the natural environment; two were rejected because they were on open space, while 21 had poor transport links and/or access to services
The proposals included the land (site ref 220) on Wetherby Road – near Knapton – originally suggested as a “Showman’s Yard” site. Now the owners want to build housing there. Worryingly the reason given by the Council officials for opposing development is the “lack of public transport”. No mention is made of its green belt credentials.
26 sites failed a “technical evaluation”. These included land to the west of Chapelfields (ref 778) which was rejected on grounds of landscape value and potential archaeology.
There is a similar list of sites rejected for Employment/Retail use.
Council officials have reviewed development boundaries at several sites put forward last year.
Notably a plan by the Council itself to build on the playing fields of Lowfields School (as well as on the previously developed footprint of the school buildings) has been rejected.
Officials point out that the field enjoys a lot of informal recreational use.
They do, however, rather ominously claim that the playing fields may in future be “taken over” by a private sports club!
Officials also rule out the development of even more of the open space between Woodthorpe, Foxwood, Chapelfields and the ring roads (site 791) and the rest of Acomb Moor (site 792) although the partial development of the moor still remains part of the draft Plan.
Approved proposals include a “freight transhipment” and Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) site on land between the A1237 and Askham Bryan. Although currently well screened by trees this is an elevated site which would be visible from several miles.