Residential apartments for the over-55s planned for wasteland site in Cockerton

Part of the vacant, overgrown wasteland off Woodland Road that is the subject of a new planning application

Part of the vacant, overgrown wasteland off Woodland Road that is the subject of a new planning application

First published in News
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Darlington and Stockton Times: Photograph of the Author by , Darlington reporter

A PATCH of derelict wasteland that has stood empty for more than a decade could be brought back into use after plans to build 46 retirement apartments were submitted to the council.

Partner Construction has applied to Darlington Borough Council to build a new development aimed at the over-55s on the site of a former garage next to Cockerton Club, on Woodland Road, in Darlington.

The proposed development of one and two bedroom residential apartments would be built in two separate blocks - one three storeys high - and will be owned and managed by Vela Homes.

Thirty-two of the apartments would be available for affordable rent, seven in shared ownership and seven for sale.

The development would include three wheelchair accessible apartments and parking for 25 cars.

A planning statement submitted with the application notes that the proposed development lies close to a number of listed 19th Century cottages and the Cockerton conservation area and suggests that the design of the new buildings would tie in with the surroundings.

Planning permission for a similar development of 32 retirement apartments was previously granted on appeal in 2003 following a public inquiry, but the scheme never materialised.

The appeal heard that the main issues surrounding that development were the effect on people living in nearby properties, the impact on the appearance and character of the local area and concerns about parking provision.

Partner Construction said in its planning statement that it has sought to alleviate the previous concerns in its new development application.

The company added: “The scheme offers a reuse of land that has stood derelict and vacant for several years.

“The proposed development takes into consideration the site’s location with due consideration to the listed buildings and the Conservation Area.

“The scheme proposed will deliver high-quality, safe, sustainable and inclusive design while making effective use of a currently overgrown, vacant piece of land.”

The application will be considered by planning officers at the council after the period for comments from the public has closed.

If there are any objections to the development, it may go before the council’s planning committee for a final decision.

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