Outline plans have been submitted for a ‘new community’ to be established and 800 homes constructed in Wetherby.
Developer Taylor Wimpey is aiming to site the new housing on 55.43 hectares of land located just off of Wetherby Race Course and HMYOI Wetherby.
The new plans include provision for new primary school and foodstore. Wetherby Town Council has requested further information from the developer before commenting on the proposed development.
Mayor of Wetherby Norma Harrington said:”These plans are still at an extremely early stage, consultation has gone out from Leeds City Council and people can have their say on they what want.
“I can say that it was a published agenda item and the upshot of it is the council are inviting the developers to give a presentation for a more detailed understanding.
“We wish to maintain the market feel of the town, we accept that there is a need for housing but people are asking where will they go to school, shopping and what is going to be provided.”
The council are currently awaiting the results of its Neighbourhood Plan public consultation. Once assessed the council will be able make further comments over the site before a decision is made at Leeds City Council.
Coun John Procter however added his concerns over the increasing number of plans for housing submitted in the area.
Coun Procter said:“We are increasingly concerned about the number of housing proposals being brought forward in the Wetherby area and clearly this is another significant proposal that could have an impact on our market town.
"We must look to preserve the heritage of the town and we question whether the services and infrastructure are in place for yet another major application. We will be doing all we can to protect our town and will keep residents informed as this issue develops.”
Planning documents note that as part of the development the historic avenue and carriage drive that once serviced Swinnow Hall will be retained, although poor trees may be removed and replanted if necessary.
The Avenue will become a new public space, stretching a width of 45 meters and a length of 450 meters while potentially including displays of public art. It is hoped this will re-invigorate the area after it was truncated by the construction of Wetherby Racecourse approach.
Cock Shot Wood, which is contained entirely within the development, is protected by a tree preservation order. Plans note the wood will be retained and managed, with footpaths possibly being introduced to encourage walking to school.
Discussions between the developer and Wetherby Young Offenders Institute have also led to the inclusion of a buffer space, helping address noise created in the recreation areas on the eastern side of the site. Housing will now be separated from the institute by 60m.
A spokesperson for Taylor Wimpey Yorkshire, said: “We have submitted an outline planning application for up to 800 homes on the land off Racecourse Approach, Wetherby.
“Public consultation was undertaken, with plans submitted including a new primary school and a local convenience store.
“Whilst there are no firm timescales for the project, we are working closely with Leeds City Council to progress the application.”