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Eccleshill councillor says houses would ease district shortfall
Liberal Democrat Geoff Reid, who represents Eccleshill, has delivered leaflets to every resident in Greystone Crescent and Sandholme Drive on the Thorpe Edge estate over the issue, asking people for their thoughts on the future of the land.
The large piece of land between the two streets used to house flats, but they were demolished some years ago.
In June the Telegraph & Argus reported how a car, believed to have been stolen, was driven onto the land and overturned. Since then landowner Incommunities has created an embankment to stop cars driving onto the plot, but this does not stop those on quad bikes, Coun Reid said.
In the leaflet, he stated: “The grassed ramparts have stopped cars crossing the site but I suspect that the only long-term answer is housing development which includes some sort of visible play facilities.”
Meanwhile, the councillor has asked Incommunities, the district’s largest social landlord, to explore the chances of securing Homes and Communities Agency funding to support development on the site.
Coun Reid said: “I know it is unusual for someone to say ‘come and build houses here’ but this could only benefit the area. Most people I have spoken to in the neighbourhood are positive about the idea.
“As it stands, it is not the best of places for an informal play area.
“After heavy rains at the end of the summer ponds were created where the water could not drain away. The land is still vulnerable to quad bikes and it is not a place for children of any age to be after dark. Visibility is crucial.
“As for housing, there has been some successful infilling in the area but I recognise this is a much larger piece of land. It could make a significant dent in the city’s housing shortage.”
An Incommunities spokesman said: “We are aware of the councillor’s request but we have no plans to develop this site at this time. We have built over 400 new homes over the past few years to help meet the demand for affordable housing and we continue to build more new homes in the district.”