Durham student housing plans withdrawn after MP issues warning over policy breaches

The scrapped developments would have seen three student housing blocks built on Clay Lane


Plans for student housing blocks in Clay Lane have been withdrawn after an MP raised concerns over policy breaches.

Durham County Council previously approved the demolition of existing buildings at Rowanwood on Clay Lane, Neville’s Cross, to pave way for 10 mixed-use houses built across three blocks, BBC reports.

However, Durham Labour MP Mary Kelly Foy brought to attention concerns over access due to the narrowness of Clay Lane and breaches of local and national planning policy. MP Foy and dozens of other residents have written to the local authority to object the plans.

Developer Charles Blair explained how plans for the student accommodation had been created to address the shortfall in student housing supply, arguing that it would also bring economic benefits. Charles further explained that the increase in students attending Durham University demonstrated the need for additional accommodation, while Ms Foy argued that the university was in fact planning to reduce the number of students in the city.

The City of Durham Parish Council also objected the proposal, saying the application was ambiguous. Parish councillors raised concerns over the potential environmental impact of the building work and the “substantial change” in the character and appearance of the areas that the redevelopment would bring.

The Local Democracy Reporting Service has said that the reasons behind the withdrawal are yet to be made public.

Featured image via Google Maps

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