Belfast City Hall
Venue: Banqueting Hall - City Hall
Contact: Louise McLornan, Democratic Services Officer 028 9032 0202 ext 6077
An apology for inability to attend was received from Councillor Hanvey.
Declarations of Interest
No declarations of interest were recorded.
The Chairperson welcomed the Members to the Pre-Determination Hearing for the application. He explained that a Pre-Determination Hearing was simply to hear the views of interested parties and statutory consultees, and for Members of the Committee to seek clarification from these parties on the facts surrounding the development.
He reminded the Members that the objective of the meeting was to focus on the material planning considerations and to facilitate the Committee in making its determination of the application. The Committee was reminded that no decision may be reached at the Hearing, as Committee Members and planners might wish to consider the views made prior to making a determination at the scheduled Committee meeting later that evening.
The Principal Planning officer provided the Committee with the principal aspects of the application for the demolition of existing buildings and the erection of a ten storey mixed use development.
He reminded the Committee that it had previously considered the application at its meeting on 15th October, where it had resolved to approve the application, with conditions, including a Section 76 Agreement. He explained that, under the Planning (Notification of Applications) Direction 2017, it had been necessary to notify the Department for Infrastructure (DfI) of the decision, as the resolution to approve was contrary to the views of a statutory consultee, namely, the Historic Environment Division (HED).
He advised the Members that HED considered that the proposal would have an adverse impact on the nearby listed Shaftesbury Square hospital and that it failed to satisfy Policy BH 11 of PPS 6.
The Committee was advised that, on 12th November, the DfI had confirmed that it did not consider it necessary for the application to be referred to it for determination. The Principal Planning officer explained that, Regulation 7(1) of the Planning (Development Management) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2015 required the Council to hold a Pre-Determination Hearing to give the applicant and interest parties the opportunity to be heard by the Planning Committee.
The Principal Planning officer advised the Members that NI Water had confirmed, on 5th December, that it was now content that a new 375mm diameter concrete surface water sewer had been laid on the Dublin Road which would be able to serve the proposed development and that it therefore had no issues with the application.
The Chairperson advised the Members that Mr. R. O’Toole, agent, was in attendance in order to answer any questions from the Committee. As no Members had any questions for the agent, the Chairperson thanked him for his attendance.
The Committee noted the information which had been provided and noted that no decision would be taken on the application until later that evening, at the monthly meeting.