Affordable homes on their way for South Ribble after landmark planning decision for the Test Track site in Moss Side

Source: South Ribble Borough Council 25 October 2019

Planning permission was approved for the development of up to 950 new homes – of which will 30% be affordable – on the Test Track site on Moss Side Industrial Estate in Leyland on 23 October.

The planning committee debated the application in detail taking into account views from the public, elected Members and developers before making their important decision.

No public objections were given to the application and support was given by local Midge Hall Community Group who commended the work undertaken over the last three years in partnership with the Council and the site developers. The committee pledged to continue to work closely with the community moving forward.

It was also pledged that the Council will work with the community to ensure the safeguarding, development and the continual improvement of the green space, Paradise Park.

Chair of the Planning Committee, Councillor Caleb Tomlinson said: “This is a real landmark decision. This development is one of the largest to ever come though the Committee and has been on the cards for a very long time. The Planning Officers have worked tirelessly in negotiations with the developer and the local community to ensure that this development is right for the people in South Ribble and delivers what our community needs.

“We know that the borough is in need of affordable housing and we have negotiated the affordable housing element of this project from a 10% make up to a whopping 30%. This is a huge achievement for the borough and will benefit hundreds of people.

“There were also concerns raised by the committee about separation distances between dwellings. We found the distances previously put forward were insufficient to meet our standards. These issues have now been rectified.”

The planning application will be delivered in five phases and seeks to implement:

  • Site enabling works and the development of highway and drainage infrastructure for the full application site;
  • A first phase of 197 new homes and associated internal access roads, public open space, green infrastructure, acoustic barrier, car park and highway infrastructure;
  • Development of a further between 653 to 753 new homes;
  • Up to 28,000 sqm of Use Classes B1 accommodation which includes offices and small starter units;
  • A local centre comprising up to 3,000 sqm of accommodation for occupation within any combination of uses within Classes A1, A2, A3, A4, A5, B1 or D1 (including health centre /clinic) (which shall not exceed 2,500 sqm of main town centre uses);
  • A new primary school;
  • Associated public open space and green infrastructure.

Councillor Bill Evans, Cabinet Member for Planning, Regeneration and City Deal said, “The Test Track is an important site and provides the opportunity to deliver a flag ship scheme supporting the delivery of strong place making for all sections of our community.

“We made it clear from the start that we will work with developers to get the best deal for our communities, and will take a hard line if developers are not willing to deliver what the people of South Ribble need.

“We’re delighted to have worked with the developers and the local community to address the issues and to increase the affordable housing provision which will see a mix of 50% affordable rent and 50% shared ownership.

“This site has been subject to much consideration and we are now at a stage to take this forward. We are confident that this will be a quality development which will deliver the communities needs while ensuring the green spaces, landscaping and environmental impacts are considered, developed and mitigated correctly and successfully.

“This is great news for the borough and I look forward to work getting started.”

Following the decision to grant the permission, the first phase of the development is due to begin imminently.

The full Planning Permission document can be found here

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