COUNCILLORS have given the green light for a £60 million homes, supermarket and retail units development on a former factory site at Hipperholme.

They granted outline planning permission for the 106-home development, which will also include a care home and 24-bungalow retirement village, on the 10.9 hectare former Crosslee tumble dryer factory site at Brighouse Road, in the face of objections from residents concerned by the impact on roads, air quality, wildlife and nature.

Calderdale Council’s Planning Committee heard Crosslee Properties Ltd’s application was for outline permission only at this stage, considering access routes to and through the site, the developer reserving the detail to a future application.

Councillors also agreed to an extra planning condition being imposed on the plans, to link a footpath to that of a nearby railway bridge, providing a route councillors believe will be safer for pedestrians and cyclists to use, ultimately linking the site to Hipperholme centre.

They heard the applicant was agreeable to this and negotiations with Network Rail for this to be allowed were already under way – but if Network Rail were to decline, Crosslee Properties Ltd would have to apply to vary the condition.

However, the council’s legal team also told councillors it was not a planning condition that could be reasonably imposed.

Discussing three access points, two on Brighouse Road (one for the retail units) and a secondary one at St Giles’ Road, Coun Stephen Baines (Con, Northowram and Shelf) said developments in the area were going to have an impact on traffic, including on Hipperholme crossroads.

“At some stage that’s going to have an impact and we have got to stop the continuous increases in traffic movements on Brighouse Road so it doesn’t become completely log-jammed – and at times it is accepted it is log jammed,” he said.

He was also concerned about the suitability of the St Giles Road access.

Highways officer Andrew Dmoch said it was a valid point about the cumulative impact of traffic but an appeal against refusal of planning permission on those grounds would be hard to defend.

Coun Colin Hutchinson (Lab, Skircoat) was concerned about the connecting road through the site which would be used by walkers and cyclists and was keen to have the link to the railway bridge route.

Ann Horsfall, speaking for objectors, said at peak times Hipperholme crossroads junction was over capacity and they believed the cumulative impact of developments in the area would increase traffic by 50 per cent.

“Air quality will worsen and mitigation proposals are not guaranteed to be effective,” she said.

The development would have a “devastating” impact on wildlife habitat and it was doubtful infrastructure such as medical and dental services could cope with so many new homes with sustainability a key issue, said Ms Horsfall.

Residents wanted the council to defer the application until a decision was made on the council’s draft Local Plan, and they wanted to see a better wildlife plan, she said.

Mark Eagland, for the applicant, said substantial weight in planning guidelines was given to developing brownfield sites like Crosslee and it met housing and other needs.

It is a sustainable location, close to shops and facilities in Hipperholme with a range of bus services to Halifax, Huddersfield and Bradford, he said.

There was a “green corridor” through the centre of the development for pedestrians and cyclists, almost 300 new trees would be planted and landscaping work carried out, said Mr Eagland.

Planning officers said external consultants had said the development would have “negligible” affect on air quality while the development will also create employment, the committee heard.

Crosslee Properties Ltd, have already said that if passed the development will be called Crosslee Park to reflect the site’s manufacturing heritage.

Taylor Wimpey Yorkshire and Crosslee Properties Ltd already have permission to build 91 new homes close to the site.

The latest application is also subject to other conditions and a legal agreement which will see the developer contributing £538,710 towards extra school places the homes are estimated to create, £90,000 towards extra road crossings, and £54,219 towards “sustainable” travel including Metrocards.