The report of the Chief Planning Officer requests Members consideration on a Full Planning Application and Listed Building application for the development of C2 care community comprising 172 units of accommodation with associated communal facilities through demolition of existing office buildings with part conversion and extension of Scarcroft Lodge together with new build accommodation and car parking; retention of existing lodges as dwellings (C3) with alterations; erection of two dwellings (C3); conversion of Woodlands into five apartments (C3); provision of associated infrastructure, landscaping and parking; formation of additional car parking area to serve existing cricket pitch on land at Scarcroft Lodge, Wetherby Road, Scarcroft, Leeds
The report of the Chief Planning Officer set out two applications one for full planning and one listed building application for the development of C2 care community comprising 172 units of accommodation with associated communal facilities through demolition of existing office buildings with part conversion and extension of Scarcroft Lodge together with new build accommodation and car parking; retention of existing lodges as dwellings (C3) with alterations; erection of two dwellings (C3); conversion of Woodlands into five apartments (C3); provision of associated infrastructure, landscaping and parking; formation of additional car parking area to serve existing cricket pitch on land at Scarcroft Lodge, Wetherby Road, Scarcroft, Leeds.
Members had visited the site earlier in the day. Photographs and plans were shown throughout the presentation.
The Panel was informed of the following points:
· This site is part of the green belt and is within the Scarcroft Conservation area;
· The tree lined drive would be retained;
· The Npower office building is to be demolished and this is a brownfield site;
· The original Scarcroft Lodge is listed and is currently classed as at risk, it has suffered water damage and has plant growth. The proposal is to retain the original lodge to restore the fabric of the building including the staircase and use the entrance to access the communal facilities;
· The site will be well screened by trees;
· The lodges at the site entrance from Wetherby Road are to be residential dwellings with two bedrooms;
· New car parking facilities for the cricket club which is to remain in situ;
· The communal facilities are to be located on the ground floor within the listed building and would be open to residents of Scarcroft. The facilities will include a pool, hydro therapy pool, sauna, gym, steam room and library;
· The first floor of the listed building would become residential accommodation;
· The original footprint of the site would remain the same, however, massing would increase;
· This development would be located in greenbelt. However, it was the view that this was a special circumstance as there is a need for housing for older people in the area.
The applicant’s representative Benedict Crowther was present at the meeting to answer questions from the Panel.
Members discussed the following points:
· The red line area as submitted in the report;
· Shared space within the community area to allow easy access for older and disabled persons to move around the site without kerbs safely;
· There are other facilities such as this nationally and there is evidence that there is low traffic with most of the residents aged over 79 years of age;
· There would be parking courts for residents and visitors, but Mr Crowther explained that usually residents preferred to use the bus provided in conjunction with the facilities;
· Discussions were on going with Sport England who had submitted an objection in relation to the risk of ball strike to the proposed Block A. A number of options had been proposed including moving the cricket square slightly, although this would result in the potential loss of a large oak tree, or the use of netting in front of Block A;
· There was to be only one access to the site, this was to be made wider;
· The ornate lamp posts on the site are to be retained and used;
· Solar panels to be used to supply power to the communal facilities;
· More trees to be planted as part of landscaping proposals;
· Re-enforced grass was proposed for the car parking area;
· Pathways leading into the site would be made wider;
· The road leading to the site would be used by both car users and cyclists.
Members discussed the need for more information in reports in relation to climate change and policies, especially in relation to impact and benefits of new developments.
Members were of the view that this was a well thought out development and especially liked the shared facilities which will open to the residents of Scarcroft; the design and style of the scheme; saving of a grade II listed building; and more trees to be planted.
Member’s opinion was that the cricket square should remain where it is so that the category A oak tree at the side of the cricket pitch could be saved, and suggested the options of a seasonal net or a net which could be dropped at the end of each match be put forward to Sport England.
Members also requested that the accessibility office be consulted to clarify the position on shared space.
RESOLVED – To defer and delegate approval of planning application and application for listed building consent to the Chief Planning Officer subject to the conditions specified within the submitted report, with the additional condition for porous surface to be used in car park for the cricket club.
The Panel noted that this application would need to be referred to the Secretary of State as the site is within the greenbelt.
The Panel congratulated Mr Crowther on the scheme and looked forward to the scheme going forward.