The York Central development plan has now become a realistic prospect after councillors approved the scheme on Monday night.
The total investment of the project may reach £650 million but will accommodate 2500 homes and have 86,600 square metres of office space built on the Brownfield site behind the railway station.
A spokesperson for York Central Partnership said: “This is a huge moment for a project. York Central represents the biggest opportunity to transform York in generations.”
York Central are hopeful that the development will create 6500 jobs adding £1.16 billion to the city’s GVA. “The Council’s decision today marks a huge step forward in bringing much needed homes and jobs into the city”.
There have been several parties including York central partnership, Homes England, Network rail and York City council working collaboratively for the past four years on a £160m funding package for infrastructure works to unlock the brownfield land.
As majority land owners Network rail and Homes England will act as master developers for the site, but the National Railway Museum will use the £50m granted to them, to enhance and expand facilities for its visitors.
However, the scheme has recently faced a lot of controversy with issues such as affordable housing, air pollution and traffic causing a concern for some residents.
One resident said, “It’s alright building new homes, we do need more homes but there’s are a lot of homeless people from York. I’m in support for new housing but it should be social housing and not profit making for developers.”
However, Cllr John Galvin reassured that, “the council’s policy is to have 20% of the housing be social housing”. When addressing the concern about the potential increase in air pollution Galvin said, “Mitigating factors have been put in place but time will tell, the development of electric cars is moving at quite a pace and I think that will reduce, in accordance with time, vehicular emissions.”
Work is scheduled to start in late 2019 which will start the development off by preparing the site. This will include demolitions of the current base and various other infrastructural works such as the new bridge that will be built.
However, the project will unlikely be finished any time soon.
“It is estimated that it will take between 15 and 20 years for the scheme to be completed as it won’t all be started at once”
“Any development on the site will have to go through a detailed planning process given there are a number of different parameters that have to be agreed.” Said the Councillor.