Alliance Asks Attwood to Intervene in Newcastle Housing Scheme

ALLIANCE Newcastle Councillor Patrick Clarke has described a decision by the DOE Planning Service to approve fifteen apartments and one house for social housing on the former college campus at Donard Street in Newcastle as going against the wishes of the local business and residential community.

Councillor Clarke is adamant that the Planning Service have not given due consideration to the implications with such a housing scheme. The Newcastle Councillor has now written to the Environment Minister Alex Atwood MLA asking him to intervene in the planning application submitted by Oaklee Housing to build the social housing in Newcastle town centre. Councillor Patrick Clarke said: “I am very concerned but not surprised that Planning Service has given approval for the project. “There seems to be no consideration whatsoever given the scheme  which is right beside taxi ranks, a public house, a hotel, an off sales, and fast food carry outs.” “I am fully supportive of social housing and recognise such schemes are needed, but to build such a scheme right in Newcastle town centre beside a busy thoroughfare and businesses many of which operate late nights and at weekends is not in the best interests of the town or tenants.” “All Newcastle Councillors are opposed to this social housing scheme being built in Donard Street due to the location which Oaklee Housing wishes to build in Newcastle.  The plans for  apartments and one house do not have adequate open space required for young families. “It is totally out of character with the whole area and is unsuitable for young families to be living in a built up residential and business area. “I am now asking the Environment Minister Alex Attwood to intervene to ensure  this planning application does not receive formal approval and is deferred at Down District Council’s planning meeting on Monday 25 February until a meeting is setup between elected representatives, the Environment Minister and Planning Service.”]]>