The first step has been taken to redevelop the former Dunlopillo site at Pannal after councillors voted in favour of the outline plan.
The plan for 120 houses, Harrogate’s first park and ride, employment land and a new roundabout and access road will be approved by the head of planning services once details relating to affordable housing provision and highways agencies are agreed.
Brian Bowden, a Spacey Houses resident opposed the plans at the meeting.
He said: “There has been mounting trepidation in our village since developers launched the application.
“120 houses has come as a shock given the size of the business park.”
Robin Barlow from the Pannal Village Association asked for a condition to be imposed limiting the size of each retail unit to 2,000 sq ft.
After the meeting he said: “We are satisfied with that condition. It gives a better chance of survival for the village shop.
“The major issue and concern that remains is traffic worries, particularly with the risk of rat running through Pannal with all of the developments proposed for the west of Harrogate.
He added: “If the business park was left in the state that it is at the moment it would gradually deteriorate, so it will be an improvement over all.”
Jay Everett from Addison Planning Consultancy assured councillors that the proposed playing fields would be built to standard.
“I am a chairman of a junior football club myself so I know the particular needs for the appropriate age group.”
Coun Reg Marsh (Lib Dem, Hookstone ward) expressed his disppointment that business currently occupying the site may have to leave.
“I would have hoped buildings would have been offered to businesses already on the site. I am concerned about the jobs that are already there, how can the council ensure they stay in the district.”
Rupert Visick, from Gent Visick developers said: “The applicants welcome this important decision which establishes the principle of redeveloping a site. There is much to do still, but this decision represents a starting point to now start working up a detailed scheme.
“The applicants will continue to liaise with the council and with the local community as these details are progressed to ensure the development of this site results in a scheme that the local community in Pannal and the council can be proud of.”
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