PLANS to build nearly 500 houses on green space in Coventry have moved a step closer sparking criticism from opposition councillors.
Coventry City Council rubberstamped initial proposals for 475 homes on the council-owned land next to Browns Lane, Coundon, at a cabinet meeting on Tuesday (October 30).
The 42-acre site has been identified as an area for house building in the adopted local plan – despite cherished green space known as the Coundon Wedge falling within the proposed site.
The Local Plan was adopted by the council last December and outlined a need for 42,400 homes to be built in the area by 2031.
But leader of the Conservatives Gary Ridley has condemned the Labour-controlled council on Twitter for breaking a promise it made in 2010 to protect the Coundon wedge.
The council owns the 42 acres of the proposed site and will submit an outline planning application.
A further three acres will be built on if negotiations with adjoining landowners are successful.
It will attempt to sell the land on to a developer but will go ahead with development even if an agreement can’t be reached.
A report to cabinet states: “The delivery of circa 475 new homes will help support the growth of the city and ensure that a choice of housing will be delivered to meet the needs of local people.
“25 per cent of the dwellings will be allocated as ‘affordable housing’.
“As the land is identified as allocated housing sites, the new homes will be well integrated into existing communities and infrastructure.”
A final decision will be made at a full council meeting in December.
The council has argued the Brown’s Lane site has not been greenbelt land for over a decade after being allocated for a proposed 40,000 square metre storage and distribution warehouse at the southern end of the former Jaguar Browns Lane site.
Opposition Conservative councillors follow a brownfield first approach to housebuilding in Coventry.
They have long criticised the council’s ‘broken pledge’ to protect all greenbelt and green fields surrounding the city.