By John Baron
Councillors have given the green light for the Airedale Mills development in Rodley to become 100% ‘affordable’ housing.
Full planning permission for 67 houses on the site, off Moss Bridge Lane, was approved last June, despite concerns in the community. The planning permission included a commitment by the developer for 15% of the properties to be classed as affordable housing.
But applicant Rodley Ltd has successfully applied to amend that commitment to give them the option of a developer building a 100% affordable/rented housing scheme.
Councillors sitting on the plans south and west panel will meet at the Civic Hall this afternoon approved the amendment to the plans, with one abstention. They were told by council planning officers that the amendment would give any future developer flexibility in providing either 15% or 100% affordable housing.
Councillor John Garvani (Lab, Horsforth) said: “If this development has a chance of being 100% affordable, why would we not take it? It will help improve the housing mix across the city and getting the affordable housing figures up.”
Councillor Trish Smith (Cons, Pudsey) said she still had concerns about the safety of the development due to problems with the reliability of the new swing bridge, which is the only form of access to the Airedale Mills site. “I still have great safety concerns over the workings of that bridge.”
Cllr Smith asked that any further revisions to the plans should be brought back to plans panel. Planning officers said the bridge had been built to agreed specifications and will continue to monitor the bridge’s operations.
WLD has reported extensively on the ongoing planning saga over the years and last August we reported a social housing provider was hoping to take on the site.
Council documents for the south and west plans panel can be read in full here.