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Major York Central development takes 'huge step forward'

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Work on a massive York development could start as soon as next year, if plans are approved.

The York Central Partnership has submitted its planning application for the 45ha brownfield development, with a proposed start date of March 2019.

As well as constructing 2,500 homes, the masterplan drawn up by Arup and Allies & Morrison includes a new access road into the city, changes to pedestrian and cycle ways and alterations to the city’s train station.

York Central Partnership project lead Tamsin Hart-Jones said: “This is a huge step forward in the delivery of York Central and in the future of York as we seek permission for the masterplan.

“A positive decision will unlock this underused piece of land and demonstrate a commitment to seeing it brought forward for the good of the city and its residents.”

The formal application marks the end of two years of planning and engagement sessions with local businesses and residents held by the partnership between Homes England, Network Rail, the City of York Council and the National Railway Museum.

Earlier this year, a report by York City Council highlighted “significant infrastructure challenges” in the masterplan.

In particular, the report outlined challenges posed by nearby railway lines to constructing a new western concourse and a new access to the station.

The site is circumscribed by rail lines with the station at the bottom of the teardrop shaped area of land, the East Coast Main Line (ECML) forming a barrier to the north and east, and the Freight Avoiding Lines (FAL) to the south and west.

In addition to this, the report says that a new access route would have to be built as the current access roads onto the site were unsuitable. The current ones run through minor residential streets, or under the Leeman Road tunnel which has limited capacity and low bridges, limiting access for high vehicles.

In November 2017, a recommendation to develop a new western access route to the site for inclusion into the York Central Masterplan was agreed by the executive of City of York Council.

In March 2018, the council agreed it would start the procurement of a construction partner to build the core £50M highway.

Once validated the application will undergo a 30 day statutory consultation period as part of the planning process.

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