Agenda item


            The Senior Planning Officer outlined the application to the Committee and highlighted the following key issues:


·        The principle of an HMO at this location;

·        Impact on surrounding residential amenity/character including policy analysis;

·        Traffic, parking and access;

·        Waste and refuse collection;

·        Over-occupation/anti-social behaviour; and

·        Climate change.


            She reported that no consultees had offered any objection to the application, however, 22 third-party objections had been received and that the concerns raised had been considered.


            She stated that, having regard to the development plan and other material considerations, the proposal was considered acceptable and that it was recommended that planning permission was granted, subject to conditions.


            The Chairperson welcomed Councillor Flynn to the meeting.  Councillor Flynn asked the Committee to refuse the application as it would provide a potential for many additional cars to the area in which on street parking was already at a premium and that it would be detrimental to residential amenity along Oakland Avenue. 


            He explained that navigation of the footpaths in the area had already been an issue in the area due to the current levels of on street parking. 


            He stated that there was no provision of adequate waste storage space and that the consultation response alluded to the applicant providing additional waste collection as only three bins would be provided. He stated further that additional or larger bins would need to be provided and stored to the rear of the property which was already saturated with parked cars and bins and would create additional damage to the residential amenity.


            The Chairperson thanked Councillor Flynn for his contribution.


            The Chairperson welcomed the Applicants, Ms F. Rogers and Ms. L. Rogers, and Mr. A. Larkin from Gravis Planning to the meeting. 


            Mr. Larkin informed the Committee that the applicants operated seven HMO properties across Belfast which focused on accommodating young professionals and that all of the properties were licensed and, as operators, they had an excellent relationship with adjoining neighbours and the Council’s HMO licensing authority.


            He stated that the applicants concurred with the recommendation to approve the application and that the property was located in a part of the Upper Newtownards Road which had been specifically designated for HMO development in the Plan Strategy due to the excellent public transport linkages and access to employment opportunities and services.


            He addressed concerns which had been raised with regards to parking, bins and refuse, and antisocial behaviour.


            He concluded by stating that the property was located in a central location that was well served by public transport on a main arterial route.  He stated that the proposed change of use fully complied with planning policy and the applicant was a highly experienced HMO operator with an unblemished record who understood the need to maintain good neighbourly relations and protect residential amenity.



            A Member raised concerns with regard to the introduction of an HMO property into a residential area that would result in traditional family housing and associated parking requirements.




            Moved by Alderman McCullough,

            Seconded by Councillor Douglas and


                   Resolved - “That the Committee agrees to defer consideration of the application in order that it can undertake a site visit and invite DfI Roads to attend a future meeting when the application will be considered.”


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