Lowfields problems continue

No response yet from the site liaison officer following residents’ concerns about delivery arrangements at the Lowfields development site.  Concerns about the impact that the large spoil mountains are having on the local environment have also still to be addressed.
Spoil mountains growing at Lowfields

At a planning committee meeting earlier in the week some progress was made on the plans to create 5 new parking spaces on Tudor Road.

The Lowfields Action Group Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/LowfieldsActionGroup/ reports that officials have confirmed that the contractor responsible for building the new access road will also construct the parking spaces as part of the same contract. Although they said that the work would be done “at the same time” no planning condition was included requiring the 3 new “on street” parking spaces to be constructed before the existing ones are lost.

The Council as both the owner and developer of the site could have offered a unilateral agreement on this but failed to do so.

Cllr Andrew Waller was the only Westfield ward representative to speak up on behalf of residents. He said that the parking spaces to the rear of 108 Tudor Road were too close to the property. He also asked that improvements be made at the Tudor Road /Gale Lane junction.

The discussion about the Yorspace development was a disappointing.  Councillors completely failed to challenge the claim that the proposed homes will be “affordable”. The developer claims they will be “affordable” The Councils own housing officer has confirmed that they will not.

This contradiction remains unexplained.

A Freedom of Information request on a related issue is still outstanding. A response is due on Monday,

No convincing answers given on car parking arrangements. The 12 spaces will not be adequate to cater for the needs of all occupiers and visitors. Overflow parking will therefore further compromise space on Tudor Road, Green Lane and Kingsthorpe. The developers say that occupiers of the building “will not be allowed to own a car” and that all vehicles using the provided spaces will be “communally owned”.

We doubt very much whether they will be able to enforce such a rule.

The only good thing to come out of the debate was an offer from the developer to look again at boundary treatments. They seem to be backing away for the idea of removing the railings. The railings offer good security while permitting the movement of small mammals like hedgehogs.

Busy week for the York planning committee

Big planning decisions in York

York Central

York Central

The largest proposal concerns the land to the rear of the railway station. Known as “York Central” redevelopment of the area has been on the cards for nearly two decades. It has finally reached the planning application stage. The report recommends that the plans be forwarded to the Secretary of State for endorsement. The plans have attracted some opposition, but the economic and social welfare of the City depends on making some progress on the site now. Hopefully some of the ill judged ideas such as having only one-way traffic through the Marble Arch tunnel can be changed at a later stage.

Lowfields

‘dozer wrecks playing field

There is already a lot of local disquiet about the way that the Council are implementing their plans for this area. Many of the comments on the “Save Lowfields Playing Field” Facebook page are from disgruntled local residents who, even at this early stage, point to conflicts between lorries and parked cars, muddy roads and the ripping out of trees and hedges.

They are asking that the new parking spaces promised for Tudor Road be constructed before the existing parking lay-by is lost as an access road is constructed.

Yorspace proposed development plan, Lowfields

Further along the road, the Yorspace” application has been heavily criticised by local residents. The main concerns related to the lack of affordable units proposed on the site, the impact on the natural environment including inappropriate boundary treatments, security concerns relating to the adjacent public snicket access to little Tudor Road, the proposal to remove the railings which protect adjacent properties,  inadequate car parking provision  and the impact that overspill parking by residents, families and visitors could have on neighbouring streets and the height of the buildings.

Council officials have revealed that they have approved 5 outstanding conditions, for activities on the building site, despite several objections.

Lincoln Court

Lincoln Court.

The Council has made an embarrassing series of mistakes on the proposal to extend this independent living building. Even now they have published papers which imply (wrongly) that the new apartments  will be classified as “Extra Care” units. It has had plenty of time to clarify that issue.

There is some hope now that the future of the adjacent games area will be secured. Local Councillors are understood to have taken the initiative to discuss moving the facility to the local rugby club ground. If so, that would be a good solution to a problem which has also raised concerns from Sport England, and the resident’s association.

Other applications

All applications are recommended for approval

Yorspace” development set to get planning permission

…but concerns remain about parking, security, affordability and funding

Council officials are recommending that 19 homes, to be built by the “Yorspace” cooperative on part of the Lowfield site, should be given planning permission.

Yorspace plans

A report to a meeting taking place on 20th March reveals that objections to the plan were received from local residents and the Save Lowfields Playing Field Action Group  who were concerned about the height of the buildings, security, inadequate car parking, boundary fences and the lack of affordable housing in the proposal.  Some residents have questioned the actions of the Council in selling the plot of land, which is located near little Tudor Road, for 1/3 of its market value.

The latter objection has been reinforced since it was revealed that there will be no “affordable” units provided on the site. Rents will be at commercial levels. The rent on a one bedroomed flat will be around £520 pcm rising to over £880 pcm for a 4 bedroomed house. These are comparable to the rents charged by private landlords in the area.

It will be for the Councils auditors to say whether the sale is a legitimate one but, given the numbers on the local housing waiting list, it is difficult to see why the Council did not either develop the land itself (as it is doing elsewhere on Lowfields) or ask a Housing Association to take the project  on.

In either case rents would have been around half the commercial level.

One issue that has not been resolved is the proposal to restrict the number of off-street parking spaces to 12. This is less than one per property. Many 4 bedroomed homes now have 2 or 3 vehicle owners living in the property. The concern is that “overspill” car parking will put further pressure on spaces in Tudor Road, Kingsthorpe and the rest of the new Lowfields development.

The developers hope the availability of good bus services in the area will reduce car usage. However, the number 4 service only travels one way down Tudor Road.

Any parent will know the pressure that teenagers, upon reaching driving age, can exert as they seek to get their first personal transport. So the cooperatives “issue resolution processes” are likely to be fully tested if they seek to restrict car ownership at their properties.

The planning committee meeting is taking place on Wednesday 20th March at 5:00pm at West Offices. Residents may make representations by registering to speak at the meeting &/or by Email to Christopher.elliott@york.gov.uk

More parking spaces to be provided on Tudor Road

The Council has relented in the face of pressure from local residents and has agreed to provide an additional 3 off street parking spaces on Tudor Road.

Location of proposed additional verge parking spaces on Tudor Road

The original plans only showed two spaces being provided in the rear garden of a block of flats. Now this is being increased by three. They will be constructed on the verges about halfway down the road.

The plan goes some way to compensating for the three spaces which will be lost when the access road for the Lowfield development is constructed.

Even two extra spaces will not be enough to satisfy the pent up demand which is already apparent in the area with verges and forecourts being pressed into service as impromptu parking areas.

The parking problem is likely to get worse when the new development is occupied. The “Yorspace” section of the development site has been criticised as it will only provide 12 parking spaces for 19 new homes. This may force some occupiers to park on Tudor Road

Separately the Council has now revealed that the “Yorspace” homes will not be categorised as “affordable”.  This calls into question why the land for the development was sold by the Council at a heavily discounted rate. The discount means that taxpayers will effectively be subsidising the occupiers of the properties although in some cases they may be relativity wealthy individuals.

 

 

Latest planning applications for the Westfield Ward

 Below are the latest planning applications received by the York Council for the Westfield ward.

Full details can be found by clicking the application reference

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Former Lowfield School Dijon Avenue York

Conditions 15 and 22 of 17/02428/FULM.

These relate to plans to remove trees from the site and break up hard surfaces

Ref. No: AOD/19/00033

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108 Tudor Road York YO24 3AZ

Construction of 2 parking spaces to rear served by new vehicular access from Tudor Road

This is also connected with the Lowfields development. It involves the provision of 2 new parking spaces to the rear of the flats. The spaces in the parking layby on Tudor Road will be lost when the new site access road is constructed.  The access road will be used by construction traffic

Ref. No: 19/00128/GRG3 

NB. These applications may be subject to objections from the Save Lowfields Playing Field Action Group. They have a Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/LowfieldsActionGroup/ on which local residents can make comments. There are currently 5 detailed planning applications/condition approvals for Lowfields which are awaiting determination


Representations can be made in favour of, or in objection to, any application via the Planning on line web site.  http://planningaccess.york.gov.uk/online-applications/

The Council now no longer routinely consults neighbours by letter when an application is received

Action taken on local problems in the Westfield area

Thoresby Road garage area. Resurfacing requested and attention to litter and overgrown ghedges

We’ve asked for off street parking to be provided near the little Tudor Road flats. This could be done quiet cheaply when plant is working on the adjacent building site

Also in little Tudor Road we’ve asked for detritus to be cleared

Urgent appeal: Kyle James Bostock, 20, wanted in connection with knife incident in Tudor Road

UPDATE: Kyle James Bostock, 20, arrested in connection with knife incident in York

Kyle James Bostock, 20, was arrested at 2.35pm (Tuesday 11 September 2018) in York in connection with the knife incident on Tudor Road, Acomb, on Sunday 9 September 2018. He is being held in custody for questioning as part of the ongoing investigation.

Anyone with information that could assist enquiries is asked to call North Yorkshire Police on 101, option 1, and speak to the Force Control Room.

Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Please quote reference number 12180168690 when providing details about this incident.

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Police investigating a knife incident in York have issued an urgent appeal to locate a man wanted in connection with the inquiry.

The Force Control Room received the report at 8.04am on Sunday (9 September 2018) about the incident that occurred on Tudor Road in the Acomb area earlier that morning.

A 25-year-old local man had suffered significant but not serious injuries believed to be from a knife. He was taken by ambulance to Leeds General Infirmary and was discharged following treatment.

A 21-year-old man from Harrogate was arrested in connection with the incident at 1.23pm on Sunday. Following questioning he was released on conditional bail pending further enquiries.

Due to the serious nature of the incident, officers from the Firearms Support Unit were deployed to assist with the arrest and the search for another man.

Enquiries are ongoing to locate Kyle James Bostock, aged 20, from Ripon who is wanted in connection with the investigation. A police helicopter was called in on Sunday to support the search.

 

Bostock is described as white, 5ft 6in tall, with short blond hair and blue eyes.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts or possible sightings are urged to call North Yorkshire Police immediately on 101, option 1, and speak to the Force Control Room.

Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Please quote reference number 12180168690 when providing details about this incident.

The scene of the incident on Tudor Road remained closed to the public during Sunday while Crime Scene Investigators attended and searches were completed. It re-opened on Sunday evening.

Residents urged to report local blocked gullies and drains

The deluge that engulfed the City yesterday evening produced surface water flooding problems in many areas.

The Council says it is working hard to remedy problems. It asks residents to report issues to FRM@york.gov.uk or call the customer centre on 01904 551550.

These are couple that we reported yesterday.

Tudor Road

Gale Lane

 

York to benefit from pothole fund boost

Tudor Road pothole

City of York Council will benefit from a share of a further £100m fund to repair potholes and storm damage, Transport Secretary Chris Grayling announced today (Monday, March 26).

The City of York will get over £256,000 to repair the roads following this winter’s adverse weather when road temperatures across York dropped as low as -5.9 degrees and froze on many more occasions than a normal year.    Across the North East, local authorities will benefit from over £4.5m in total.

In addition to a pothole repair fund, we will receive £72,000 to build on our pothole spotter trial aimed at improving road safety by revolutionising the way potholes are identified and managed. The trial will explore the use of high definition remote monitoring to allow for accurate and more frequent surveying of the local road network.

Askham Lane pothole

The pothole-spotter system is mounted to refuse collection vehicles comprised of high-definition cameras, an integrated navigation system and intelligent software.   In addition, residents are encouraged to report potholes at https://doitonline.york.gov.uk/mapeforms/Eform/Highways . Several dozen have been reported – mianly in west York – over the weekend