Residents in Sunderland are calling on their city council to rethink proposals which could see part of the green belt given over to build new homes.
Preparations are being made to set out how new homes will be built, as well as plans to generate more jobs, services and improve transport links across Wearside.
Are there not plenty of brown land sites they could build on rather than green belt?Marie-Claire Young
As part of the housing proposals within the Draft Core Strategy and Development Plan (CSDP), Sunderland City Council says 13,824 are needed by 2033, with an average of 768 to be built a year.
The paper is being drafted up to help deal with the expected population increase, with a need for action to provide more places to live, work opportunities and facilities.
It is also looking at how it help cut obesity levels.
In addition to a new travellers’ site and two others for travelling showpeople, the council has listed 15 green belt locations where homes could be built.
A total of 1,546 homes are proposed for those sites, with 3,235 others to go on coalfields, 4,795 in south Sunderland, 884 in central Sunderland, 1,160 in north Sunderland and 884 in Washington.
A report by the council states: “The CSDP has sought to maximise the level of housing delivery within the built-up area of the city, however, it is not possible to achieve the levels of new housing development which would be required to meet this need within the existing urban area.
“The plan therefore needs to identify land to accommodate a minimum of 1,500 mew homes in the green belt.”
But some think the authority should take another look at where homes could go.
Marie-Claire Young said: “I can’t believe they are going to build 70 houses on West Park in Herrington and 400 houses on land next to Herrington Park.
“Are there not plenty of brown land sites they could build on rather than green belt?”
Chris Parry said: “Our council estates need attention yet we are getting more and more private housing.
“Our city centre is a disgrace and they will build more out of town places
“We have office blocks already vacant all over the city and they want to build more. “We have demolished council housing and the land is left unused.
“About time this council got its priorities right in 2017.”
But Stewart Grainger said: “Let’s hope it comes off.
“More homes are desperately needed.”
The consultation will run until October 2, with more details available via www.sunderland.gov.uk/CSDP.