Venue: Hybrid Meeting
Contact: Louise McLornan, Democratic Services Officer
Apologies for inability to attend were reported from Councillors Hutchinson, O’Hara and Whyte.
Declarations of Interest
No declarations of interest were recorded.
The Principal Planning officer outlined that the applications had been considered by the Planning Committee at its meeting on 21st October, 2021. The Committee had accepted the officer recommendation to grant planning permission, subject to conditions and a Section 76 Planning Agreement, with delegated authority given to the Director of Planning and Building Control tofinalise the wording. However, in view of an objection from DfI Roads and the position of NI Water, theCommittee had noted that, before a decision was made, the Department for Infrastructure (DfI) had to be notified of the application, and that it would decide whether to call it in and determine it itself.
He explained that the Council had notified DfI of the application on 29th October, 2021. The Committee was advised that, whilst DfI had 28 days to consider the notification, it had issued a holding direction to the Council, preventing it from determining the application, allowing the Department additional time to consider the notification. He explained that, on 7th December 2022, the Council had written to DfI seeking an update and timescale for it issuing its formal response to the notification. The Council highlighted the delays to the applicant and that the process was negatively impacting on the Council’s own performance in processing the Major application.
The Members were advised that, following further written representations and a meeting between the Planning Service and DfI, the Department finally provided its response to the notification on 23rd March, 2022, five months following the original notification. DfI had confirmed that it was not calling in the application and that it was being returned to the Council for a decision. The Principal Planning officer outlined that no explanation had been provided by the Department as to the reason for the five month delay.
The Committee was reminded that, following return of the application to the Council for a decision, Regulation 7(1) of the Planning (Development Management) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2015 required that the Council hold a Pre-Determination Hearing to give the applicant and interested parties an opportunity to appear before and be heard by the Committee. He reiterated that a decision on the applications would not be made at the Pre-Determination Hearing, but that the Committee would be asked for its consideration at the subsequent Special Meeting to be held later that evening.
The Principal Planning officer outlined the details of the application to the Committee.
He explained the main issues which had been considered in the assessment of the case, including:
· the principle of housing at the location;
· the impact on Built Heritage and Archaeological interests;
· the design and layout of the proposal;
· the impact on amenity of nearby residents and businesses;
· waste management;
· drainage and flood risk;
· the consideration of Developer Contributions
The Members were advised that the site was located within the development limit of Belfast in the BUAP 2001 and Draft BMAP 2015 (dBMAP, both versions) and it was un-zoned, white land in both versions of dBMAP.
He outlined that ... view the full minutes text for item 3.