Green light to demolish and rebuild homesChris Havergal, Cambridge News, 5 December 2013
CONSTRUCTION of more than 90 homes on three sites across Cambridge has been approved as part of a huge council house redevelopment programme.
The city council's planning committee yesterday approved revamps of estates in Water Lane, East Chesterton, Aylesborough Close, Arbury, and Campkin Road, King's Hedges - despite some residents' pleas to be allowed to stay in their homes.
Many of the homes which will be demolished are small one- bedroom properties which the council says are outdated and hard to let.
The new estates will have a mix of property sizes, including some homes which will be sold on the open market to bankroll the project.
In Water Lane, three blocks containing 24 one-bedroom homes will be demolished, to be replaced with a block of 14 council flats for the over-55s, plus 10 properties which will be sold on the open market - six flats and four houses.
Cllr Colin Rosenstiel, who represents Market, said the "poky" properties needed replacing because the bedrooms were not even large enough for a double bed.
In Aylesborough Close, 24 homes will be demolished, to be replaced by 20 new council properties - eight houses and 12 flats - plus six houses and nine flats which will be sold on the open market.
Betty Cunnington, of St Albans Road, told councillors she was concerned about a planned four-storey block, which she said would have a "seriously adverse impact" on her privacy, but the committee decided the scheme was acceptable.
The Campkin Road scheme will see 48 one-bedroom flats replaced with 21 council properties - 14 flats and seven houses - plus 12 houses which will be sold.
Cllr Rosenstiel praised these designs also. He said: "The city council has far too many one-bedroom properties which make appalling use of their plots.
"There's this vast area of grass in front of it that's rarely used, it's of very little value to anybody.
"I would regard this as being an improvement in the locality as well as generating new housing."
All three applications were approved unanimously.
Speaking afterwards, Labour's housing spokesman, Cllr Kevin Price, said: "It's good news these three applications have been approved so we can move forward on those sites but there have also been many lessons learned about the way the whole programme was handled.
"In the future the city council must ensure it works with tenants and listens to them more carefully."
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