Plans for 1,200 home development in Hartlepool gets green light

Plans outlining the development of 1,200 new homes and community facilities have been given the green light despite concerns.

Wednesday, 19th December 2018, 4:35 pm
Updated Wednesday, 19th December 2018, 4:38 pm
The edge of the land near High Tunstall Farm where new homes could be built.

Hartlepool Borough Council planning committee approved an outline application to develop the land south of Elwick Road in the High Tunstall area.

The development will include 1,200 homes, a new distributor road, a pub, shopping facilities, a primary school and open spaces.

This application was last considered by the planning committee in January when members were minded to approve the application subject to the final planning conditions being reported.

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At the previous meeting it was heard 482 letters of objection were submitted to the council in regard to the plans, raising concerns such as potential road issues, pressure on schools and health facilities, noise pollution and overdevelopment.

Plans also include the applicant Tunstall Homes Ltd contributing more than £14million towards the proposed new Elwick by-pass, more than £3.5million for a new primary school site and £2million for secondary school provision.

Council planning bosses said the positives outweigh the negatives of the development and recommended the proposal be approved, which was backed by the majority of councillors on the planning committee.

Daniel James, planning team leader, said: “It is considered that the proposed development would, overall, positively benefit each of the threads of economic, social and environmental sustainability and would, on balance, deliver sustainable development.

“It is considered that in this instance, that none of the concerns are so substantial that they would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the respective benefits.”

At the meeting Rod Hepplewhite, from planning agent Prism Planning Ltd, backed the council report.

He said: “We’re entirely comfortable with the proposed conditions.

“Suffice to say I agree with the conclusions in each topic and all the other planning considerations have either been satisfied or can be through appropriate conditions.”

Before its approval Josh Kitson had raised concerns over the development on behalf of local families and wanted it to be scrutinised further.

He said: “High Tunstall is the most significant development in Hartlepool.

“Our first concern is over the level of public scrutiny over the viability assessment submitted on behalf of the applicant.

“We think this is in the public interest to scrutinise this issue and would request the application should be deferred to allow the viability assessment to be published and reviewed.”

This comes after the council regeneration committee earlier this week approved the High Tunstall masterplan, which outlines how the area will be developed.

The site is allocated as part of the 2018 Hartlepool Local Plan to deliver approximately 1,200 houses.

The plans are expected to be delivered over a 10 to 13-year period and will include a distributor road and car parking.

Nic Marko , Local Democracy Reporting Service