Nearly 1,000 new houses are to be built on council-owned land in east Leeds in a major boost to regeneration in the area after planning approval was granted.
Applications to build a total of 971 new homes across eight brownfield sites in Seacroft, Halton Moor and Osmondthorpe in phases over the next 10 years were all approved on Thursday by Leeds City Council’s north and east plans panel.
All of the developments form part of the council’s Brownfield Land Programme, working with development partners Keepmoat and Strata. The new homes will be a mix of two, three and four-bed houses, and will include a proportion of affordable housing.
Apart from demonstrating the commitment to developing brownfield land to meet the city’s housing needs, the project also aims to support sustainable communities by offering a range of housing mix and choice, better connected neighbourhoods through improved transport links and greenspace.
Building the new houses is anticipated to create approximately 170 new jobs for local people and around 40 apprenticeship opportunities over the lifetime of the project.
Extensive consultation with the local community, councillors and key stakeholders has taken place on the plans, with the Leeds Civic Trust praising the applications as ‘exemplary’.
Leeds City Council executive member for regeneration, transport and planning Councillor Richard Lewis said:
“We are delighted to see these applications be approved today, as they are very important to continue the growing momentum of regeneration in east Leeds through housing growth and choice as well as offering potential local job and training opportunities.
“Bringing cleared sites back into use means that there is already infrastructure either ready or waiting or able to be reactivated with some support, whether this is health centre, schools, roads or bus services.
“Schemes like these demonstrate our commitment to a brownfield-field approach to delivering much-needed new housing in Leeds, and working with developers and communities like this we can achieve sustainable growth in a phased way, so we very much look forward to following the progress of these developments in the years to come.”
Ian Hoad, Regional Director for Keepmoat, said:
“Today marks another milestone in a very unique and important project for Leeds; as we are now one step closer to building quality new homes and investing in key neighbourhoods. This regeneration masterplan is an exemplar of partnership working and we are particularly proud to be a part of it as it fits perfectly with our business model.
“Ninety-eight per cent of the homes we build are on brownfield land and the vast majority of purchasers are first-time buyers, so we very much look forward to delivering this project for the people of Leeds and making a real impact on the wider community.”
Nigel Robson, Strata Land Director, said:
“We are delighted with the decision today which follows extensive positive engagement with the local community, ward members and the planning team at Leeds City Council.
“We are pleased with the progress of our ongoing development at Ambition on Asket Drive and we look forward to delivering further phases of development in Seacroft with the new schemes at Kentmere Approach, the former Asket Hill Primary School and Bishops Way.”
The sites to be developed by Keepmoat are as follows:
- Cartmell Drive, Halton Moor (45 properties)
- Rathmell Road and Kendal Drive, Halton Moor (109)
- Wykebeck Avenue and Wykebeck Mount, Osmondthorpe (102)
- York Road and South Parkway, Seacroft (33)
- Seacroft Crescent, Seacroft (49)
- Brooklands Avenue/Drive and Parkway Close, Seacroft (272)
The sites to be developed by Strata are:
- Former Asket Hill Primary School/Kentmere Approach (245 properties
- Bishops Way, Seacroft (116 properties)
As part of the project, a new road and bus route link will be built connecting North Parkway and South Parkway, while there will also be dedicated pedestrian and cycle links put in place. This will help improve connectivity for the whole area, including improving roads and walking routes close to the David Young Community Academy.
The schemes will also make a significant commitment to the development of the new Killingbeck Meadows Natural Flood Management Scheme, which as well as helping to alleviate flood risk in the area through sustainable drainage will also become an attractive new public space with landscaping, planting and paths.
These elements are in keeping with the Killingbeck and Seacroft Neighbourhood Framework (KSNF), which was developed with local people and sets out the priorities for new housing, green infrastructure and improved public transport.
This new housing follows on from other regeneration projects in the area such as the East and South East Leeds (EASEL) project which is nearing completion on around 600 new homes, including 83 new council properties, as well as providing land for a new doctor’s surgery. Other ongoing developments include 128 new homes by Strata on two sites at Asket Drive, while Strata and Keepmoat together have started enabling works to provide 500 new homes on the former Seacroft Hospital site.
Further sites in the Brownfield Land Programme will be coming forward to the market in the months to come, with the first expected to be at Beckhills in Meanwood next month.
The Brownfield Land Programme was established in Leeds in January 2013, bringing together 33 council-owned sites across the city with the aim of securing their redevelopment.
Leeds City Council has been innovative in working with developers to bring these sites forward, using the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) Delivery Partner Panel (DPP) to select the developers, and working with them early in the selection process on planning and legal matters, which has allowed applications to come forward at pace since appointment in spring 2016. The way sites are packaged also supports the ability of the developers, Keepmoat and Strata, to create viable proposals and commit to housebuilding at scale.