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Calls to Build Homes on Old Park & Ride Car Park in York


2:30pm 25th June 2014
(Updated 1:11pm 27th June 2014)

A York Conservative councillor is calling for affordable homes to be built on the old Park & Ride car park at Askham Bar in the city.

John Galvin says the former car park, which is no longer in use since the opening of the new Askham Bar Park & Ride earlier this month, should be turned into affordable housing and has written to Labour council leader James Alexander to ask him to make it happen.

John Galvin said:

”There is very clearly a great need for Affordable and Social Housing in York and this site gives the City Council the opportunity for the Council to facilitate through a Housing Association the building of such much needed homes.”

“Not only is the site ideal for development by a Housing Association but it is well served by public transport, and adjacent to Tesco. I do really hope that our Labour Council will do the right thing and make this happen.”

Council leader James Alexander has said in response to John Galvin's calls:

"It’s unfortunate Councillor Galvin's letter has been shared with the media before I’ve received it myself."

"There have been internal discussions about using this now largely redundant site for housing and I am pleased to hear via the media about Councillor Galvin's support for this idea."

"The site recently became subject to parking charges to provide some small income to the taxpayer whilst options for alternative use are explored. Businesses have been very clear that they are opposed to large amounts of free out of town parking and we have taken those comments on board in how we manage this site."

"I am pleased Councillor Galvin is backing housing on this site but I hope his desire for more affordable homes is spreading to his Conservative colleagues who have campaigned against almost every significant housing site for the last few years. I look forward to a more mature debate with Conservatives outlining which sites they agree with Labour should be earmarked for much needed new homes."

York Council says it's examining options for the site and it is likely the land will be sold off for development but that it was too soon to confirm that. The council has also highlighted it's proposals for more housing in it's controversial Local Plan and emphasised the work it has already done to build new homes on brownfield sites including the White Swan, Castle Piccadilly, the Bonding Warehouse, Hungate, the old British Sugar site and in the New Year Nestle South.

Tony Clarke, Head of Transport, said:

“We are currently exploring options on what to do with the car park.  In the medium to long-term it is anticipated that this will be sold and redeveloped, but in the interim the council will benefit from some additional income from the temporary pay and display, which will also help cover the business rates for the car park and access to the nursery in the area, which must be maintained.”

Since this story was first reported, John Galvin has apologised to Council Leader James Alexander as he had forgotten to post the letter asking for affordable housing to him. 

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