Approval granted for 90 new homes in Chester

An application to build new dwellings on the site of the Countess of Chester Hospital has been approved.

The current owners, NHS Property Services, do not plan to develop the site themselves. Instead, they are looking for a developer to build the new homes.

It took some time to get the planning application approved. Initially, it was rejected because there was not enough affordable housing included in the project. In the final draft, 30% of the properties will be designated as affordable housing.

This fits in with the needs of the local area. First-time buyers have been almost completely priced out of the market in Cheshire and the surrounding area.

In 2014, the council put together a five-year housing plan and one to the key goals included was to increase the “supply of both market and affordable homes”. The council estimates that there is an annual shortfall of 714 affordable homes. There is a particular need for small homes for young families and for the elderly.

Over the next five years, 5,500 new homes need to be built in the area, which will keep Chester architects and construction firms busy. The main issue is finding the land. However, the council has carried a full Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA). It has already identified 754 sites that can be developed over the next 30 years with space for 36,866 homes. Not all sites are ready for immediate development, but the SHLAA shows that there is sufficient land ready to be built on over the coming 5 years for 8,252 homes.

Posted by Matt Hughes
September 1, 2015

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