To receive and consider the attached report of the Chief Planning Officer regarding an application for partial demolition to existing house and erection of five flats.
The report of the Chief Planning Officer requested Members consideration for the partial demolition of existing house and erection of 5 flats at 374 Alwoodley Lane, Alwoodley, Leeds.
Members were advised of additional conditions:
· Construction management plan
· Maximum gradients as part of condition 14
· Vehicle spaces to be laid out
The proposal sought to erect a building that would contain five flats with underground car parking for 11 vehicles in a basement building. Members were informed that the ground and first floor of the building would contain 2 flats each with the fifth flat located on the second floor. It was proposed that the building would be sited on the side garden of 374 Alwoodley Lane.
The Panel were advised that the proposal was for the side extension to 374 Alwoodley Lane to be demolished, therefore the distance proposed between the retained part of 374 Alwoodley Lane and the proposed flats would be 2.75 metres.
Members were informed that currently the site has two access points. However, the proposal would divide the site so that the access closest to Harrogate Road junction would provide the access / egress for the proposed development whilst the access further along Alwoodley Lane would provide the access/ egress for the current dwelling.
Members acknowledged the fact that there was a small brook between the east boundary of 374 Alwoodley Lane and the adjoining property.
Members had attended a site visit earlier in the day. Photographs and plans were shown throughout the presentation.
Members acknowledged that the Alwoodley Neighbourhood Plan had been adopted and should be given full weight.
In attendance at the meeting were Mrs Adcock who lived in the neighbouring property and Cllr. Dan Cohen, both raised concerns informing the Panel of the following points:
· The houses along Alwoodley Lane are large family houses with large gardens. Mrs Adcock said that this was the reason that they had extended their property to be their forever home. However the properties on either side of Mrs Adcock were looking to demolish the houses and build flats. She said that her family were facing the prospect of an over dominant monstrosity being shoe horned into the space between her house and that of next door on an undersized plot;
· Mrs Adcock said that she realised that family homes were needed but did not feel that flats were family orientated or that these were affordable homes;
· The scale and bulk of the proposed flats made for over development of the site;
· Mrs Adcock was of the view that this application was garden grabbing and not in the spirit of the Neighbourhood Plan;
· Mrs Adcock explained that her family would suffer loss of privacy due to the height of the proposed balconies facing her bedroom and that of her daughter’s room would give direct view into their bedrooms. She said that the front and side proposed balconies served no purpose other than maintenance access according the submitted report and requested that they be removed;
· Impact of increased traffic including extra traffic from the Eden House flats which are in development;
· The Alwoodley Neighbourhood Plan set out that there should not be any on street parking. Mrs Adcock and Cllr. Cohen were of the view that there would not be enough parking on the proposed development and deliveries and visitors to the proposed flats would have to park on the street;
· It was the view of Mrs Adcock that the proposed flats were too close to the boundary with her property she pointed out that the significant gap as at point 10.4 of the submitted report relating to the stream was her private land not that of the applicant;
· The design of the roof of the proposed flats was out of character with the area;
· The proposal was out of keeping with the Neighbourhood Plan and also out of character with the area;
· Real highways issues due to the amount of development in the area;
· Cllr. Cohen referred to the rear of the proposed development as a ‘carbuncle’ and out of keeping with the local area;
· Policy BE3 of the Alwoodley Neighbourhood Plan refers to the fact that development must not lead to on street parking.
Responding to questions and comments from the Panel Mrs Adcock said that the applicant had not spoken to her about the application. Mrs Adcock explained what the traffic was like on both Alwoodley Lane and Harrogate Road clarifying how busy it was and that there was already parking restrictions with a single yellow line outside the property.
It was noted that within the Alwoodley Neighbourhood Plan it gave a guiding principle that family homes should not be demolished for flats. It was acknowledged that this was only a partial demolition of the family house.
Mr Johnson of Dzign House Architects was in attendance at the meeting and addressed the Members informing them of the following points:
· He had taken on board the comments of the neighbour
· He acknowledged that Alwoodley Lane was a busy a road. However he said there was already an issue with on street parking especially for deliveries as most of the houses along that road had electronic gates.
· Can’t control the parking of those who are picking up or dropping off at the school
· Extensive negotiations had taken place with officers
· Parking on the site did address parking as there were more spaces than required;
· ‘Carbuncle’ this was a question of architectural design and preference;
· The development does not overlook other properties the site is substantially screen by a number of trees;
· 376 had been a separate site until 374 had been extended into 376. It was Mr Johnson’s view that another building on this site would therefore not look out of character;
· Mr Johnson said that there was a demand for quality flats in the area for those older people who wanted to downsize but not move away from the area.
Mr Johnson in responding to Members questions and comments informed them of the following points:
· The scale and massing of the whole site when taken in context of the properties either side was not too large for the character of the area;
· The parking within the basement was bigger than required and any further parking could be dealt with within the site;
· The balconies could be changed to either restrict view or be removed;
· The site would probably be gated on a night time;
· Proposed materials were natural flat faced stone, soft alloy for the roof, aluminium window frames, there would be Juliet balconies to the front but there was a substantial screen of trees, and the side windows would be obscure glazed;
· It was noted that the development would not use solar panels but a sustainable heating and hot water system;
· There was a 15 metre gap between properties which exceeded the minimum standard;
· Side of balconies could be screened with 2 metre high screens to limit overlooking
· It was noted that the properties on Alwoodley Lane had been built at different times and therefore were of differing design including style of roof;
Members were advised that an oral update as suggested at point 10.6 of the submitted report had been provided at the start of the item and referred to the additional conditions.
Clarifications was provided on how the car parking was compliant with car parking standards. Car parking standards are included within the Core Strategy and the UDPR.
Members were also advised that the remaining house would still have Permitted Development rights. It was currently considered not to be reasonable to impose removal of PD rights on the remaining dwelling.
Members requested additional parking to the front of the application site and also the removal of balconies to the side of the flats and screens made higher on the balconies to the rear of the flats.
RESOLVED – To defer and delegate to the Chief Planning Officer with the additional amendments listed below:
Additional Conditions included: