70,000 homes plan - you can have your say

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Homeowners across Morley and Leeds have been assured they will get a say over controversial proposals to build 70,000 new homes across the city later this year.

Housing chiefs will meet next Friday to discuss the latest proposals regarding the specific locations of the new houses, which Leeds City Council want to build by 2028.

The city has been divided into 11 separate geographical areas for the purposes of allocating housing numbers, with Morley being coupled with parts of South Leeds including Beeston and Middleton.

A public consultation on the numbers is expected to go ahead in the autumn.

The council’s executive member for regeneration, transport and planning Coun Richard Lewis said: “These proposals continue to lead to considerable debate in the city.

“Even though this has been a long process I would assure people they will get the chance to have their say later this year when we expect to go out to further public consultation. At this point, everyone can give their views on the sites identified for possible new housing.

“There has been a fair amount of confusion caused by misinformation regarding these proposals, so I would appeal to everyone to take the time to look at what we are trying to do in a fair and reasonable way.

“In order to help our city develop all communities need to be open to having some new housing, although we say again our focus is very much on brownfield first and protecting our countryside.”

The housing target forms the backbone of the Local Development Framework (LDF) which was formally adopted by the council earlier this year.

Officials had said the target could be altered in light of any new information or changes in the population projection for Leeds during the next decade and a half.

Despite controversy over potential building on greenfield sites in Morley in recent years, the council have said they are committed to constructing 65 per cent of homes on brownfield sites over the next five years, and will work with developers to ensure that such sites as well as empty homes will be prioritised before greenfield.

Concerns over school places and infrastructure are also likely to be addressed at the meeting, as well as future provisions for the gypsy and traveller community.

A search for sites suitable to accommodate housebuilding has resulted in more than 600 places being ruled out, 409 of those being plots located on green belt land.