Go-ahead for 500 homes on Salford industrial site despite lack of affordable provision

Plans have been approved for a 500-home scheme in Greater Manchester on a site currently allocated for employment use, despite the scheme offering no affordable housing.

A visualisation of the Salford proposals. (Pic: Eutopia Homes)
A visualisation of the Salford proposals. (Pic: Eutopia Homes)

Applicant Eutopia Homes is behind the full planning application for the redevelopment of the 1.15-hectare site at Ordsall Lane, Salford, which is currently home to two industrial sheds, to provide the homes in buildings ranging from six to nine storeys.

According to Eutopia Homes, 250 homes would be for sale and 250 for private rent.

The scheme was approved at Salford City Council's first virtual planning committee meeting last Thursday.

A council planning report said that "given the site's existing industrial use it forms part of an established employment area" as defined by a saved policy in the authority's unitary development plan (UDP).

However, it added that the site is also located within the Ordsall Riverside Corridor. It said that policy OR10 of the local Ordsall Riverside planning guidance identifies the Riverside Living Character Area, in which the site is located, to be "developed primarily for residential use, with a strong emphasis on creating an attractive, green and sustainable residential environment suitable for family living".

It added that the guidance says that, for a residential scheme to be acceptable, "all reasonable attempts" must have been taken to relocate existing businesses on proposed sites.

The report said it had been demonstrated that this was the case.

Therefore, the report advised, "in this case, the loss of employment land and the proposed redevelopment of the site for housing would be consistent with the development plan and therefore the principle of development is supported".

Elsewhere, the report said the applicant's viability case has been reviewed by the council "and it has been agreed that a financial contribution would render this scheme unavailable".

It said the applicant had agreed to make a financial contribution towards transport obligations, and to "sign up to a clawback mechanism to enable the scheme's viability to be reassessed towards the end of the construction period and any monies secured through this clawback review will be directed towards, open space, public realm and/or affordable housing".

Recommending approval, the report said the scheme would provide a "high-quality designed and landscaped scheme" and would "not give rise to unacceptable impacts on residential amenity, for existing or future residents".

"Overall it is considered that the proposed development would make a positive contribution to the regeneration of the Ordsall Riverside area and represent a sustainable form of development" that complies with the relevant local and national planning policies, the report said.

According to Eutopia Homes, the development will provide an £850,000 contribution to an improved bus service to Manchester City Centre. 

In a statement, the firm said the development will also create over 600 jobs.

Scott Hammond, founder and CEO at Eutopia Homes, said the "high-quality" new homes "can cater to a broad range of demographics thanks to the range in apartment sizes and mix of tenures" and would be "within reach to the local workforce price-wise”.

He added that the plans will "open up the riverside through new pathways and green spaces".

Hammond said: “We are grateful to Salford City Council for its flexibility and willingness to embrace new ways of working so we could take this development forward.

"The council has demonstrated a speed of decision making in difficult times which is testament to the desire to attract inward investment.”


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