Developers are considering an appeal after Leeds City Council last week (8 September 2017) refused planning permission for a new retail park in Middleton eleven months after the application was submitted.
Located at the former Benyon Centre site, just off Middleton Ring Road, the plans were put forward by joint developers CDP Marshall and Rothstone Estates in October 2016. A new Lidl and a B&M Homestore would have anchored the development, alongside seven other shop, café or restaurant units.
The planning application had been with the Council for around a year and in that time discussions had taken place that resulted in significant changes to the plans, at the request of the Council.
The plans were refused by Council Officers on grounds of a “lack of onsite landscaping to mitigate the loss of trees which are protected by Preservation Orders” and potential noise impacts of a service yard to neighbouring properties on Dolphin Road.
A spokesperson for the joint developers commented: “Naturally we are extremely disappointed and frustrated with the decision. We feel the Council have missed out on the opportunity of:
- 140 new jobs
- £700,000+ Community Infrastructure Levy
- £450,000 Rates income per annum
“We tried to work with the Council for over a year and made significant changes to the plans to mitigate the issues raised. More weight should have been put on the investment and regeneration of this large brown field site and we feel the Council has missed a fantastic opportunity to attract investment to this part of the City.
“All options for the next stages of the plans are currently being explored. Through our consultation, we felt that the local community recognised the need for this site to be regenerated after many years of being vacant and we are frustrated with the attitude of the Council as we submitted our planning application over a year ago.”
Two public exhibition sessions took place before the application was submitted, one at St George’s One Stop Centre and another at St John and St Barnabus Church Hall in Belle Isle.
You can find full details of the application on the Council’s planning portal here.