FORMAL outline planning permission has been granted by Derry City and Strabane District Council for approximately 750 new homes at Ballyoan.
The Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District, Councillor Michaela Boyle, has signed the Section 76 legal agreement that will pave the way for the delivery of a major private residential development in the City.
The signing of the decision notice and the legal agreement will permit developers to apply for detailed reserved matters applications for the development.
The significant H30 site spans 37.5 hectares and is located to the east of the Foyle Bridge between Clooney Road and Rossdowney Road.
The plans represent an investment of £100m by development company South Bank Square Ltd. Outline Planning Permission for the housing was granted by Council’s Planning Committee back in March of this year and the decision notice was issued recently.
After signing the legal agreement, Mayor Boyle said she was delighted to play a part in the delivery of such a significant neighbourhood development.
“This will be a transformational project for the Waterside area, helping to relieve housing stress in the City and provide modern, high quality homes for local people.
“I am excited to see the plans now moving forwards, and I’m encouraged by the developers’ ambitious proposals to address issues such as traffic management and transport links in the area.
“Having now signed the agreement, we can now move to the next stage in the actual delivery of this major project.”
Chair of Council’s Planning Committee, Cllr Christopher Jackson said the impact would be widespread.
“I welcome the signing of the decision notice and the Section 76 agreement, the demand for quality local housing is significant and this will add to the city’s offering both for local people and those hoping to relocate here.
“It’s also positive news for the local building trade as developers anticipate the work will create significant employment for the ten years of construction involved.”
The signing took place in the Guildhall, attended by representatives from the Council’s Planning Department and the developers involved in the application, South Bank Square Ltd.
Speaking afterwards owner of South Bank Square, Seamus Gillan commented: “We are very pleased to have received outline planning approval for this significant site.
“This development will bring an enormous investment to the area, which will produce a significant economic benefit for the whole community.
“In addition to the headline figure of our £100m investment, we expect that up to 1,000 construction jobs will be created during the construction period over the next 10 years.
“We would like to thank everyone at Derry City and Strabane District Council who worked on and supported this proposal, as well as the elected representatives for the area, and members of the Planning Committee who have decided to approve our plans for the development.
“By delivering over 750 new homes to the area we will be making a vital contribution to increasing the amount of available housing in the area.
“This approval will not only deliver new homes and a great place to live but will help deliver considerable improvements to the road infrastructure in the area including at the Caw Roundabout.”
Brian Kelly, Director from planning consultant Turley, who helped secure the permission, also commented: “This is a hugely significant permission for the city of Derry and the North West regions.
“This is a huge boost to the area’s economy and housing supply.
“We have worked closely with South Bank Square Limited from the inception of the proposals to shape the application plans, and we are proud at having secured this permission.
“It is understood that a detailed planning application will follow this outline permission in order to enable the commencement of development on site in the first quarter of 2020.”
Prospective home buyers will be pleased to hear that the proposed neighbourhood development will include a range of housing designs and sizes ranging from 2 to 5 bedrooms.
“This new neighbourhood development will also include convenience retail and professional services, as well as the provision of significant play and recreation areas, a linear park and public amenity space.
Access will be via a new signalised junction at Gransha, and the developers have outlined plans for significant improvements to the road infrastructure in the area, including Gransha and Caw Roundabout as well as a bus service to service the development.
A free travel card will also initially be made available for those who move to the area to encourage public transport usage.