Councillors have deferred making a decision on plans for a new 500-home neighbourhood on the former Derbyshire Royal Infirmary site.
An outline application was due to be determined by Derby City Council’s planning control committee on Thursday evening.
As well as homes and a park, other proposed uses on the 18.5-acre site included commercial, leisure, retail and food and drink.
However, members opted to defer making a decision so that the plans could be “tweaked”. The stumbling block centres around two 19th-century “pepper-pot” buildings. In its application, Nightingale Quarter Estates proposed bulldozing one to make way for an access road.
Councillors said that, while they are in favour of the overall scheme, they wanted both “pepper-pot” buildings to be kept.
The plans included proposals to demolish one of two existing ‘Pepper Pot’ towers left standing on the former DRI site. Pictured is the tower earmarked for demolition.
During a debate at the meeting, it was pointed out that the façades were all that remain of the former infirmary, which was built in the early 1890s. Both are on Derby City Council’s list of buildings considered of “some local importance”. But they do not have statutory protection through listing at a national level.
Nonetheless, councillors agreed to defer making a decision on the application so that the developer could draw up plans that protect both structures.
Speaking after the vote, Councillor Frank Harwood said: “We are very anxious to see this development go ahead. We do not, in any way, wish to give the impression that we are against the development. We are not.”
In a report to the planning committee, acting planning director David Gartside had recommended the outline application be approved, subject to the negotiation of a Section 106 agreement, which would outline a series of conditions of approval, some of them financial.
Discussions have already taken place and Nightingale Quarter Estates had agreed to fund a new primary school and public open space as part of the agreement, as well as just over a fifth of the cost for a new secondary school.
A birds-eye view of the Nightingale Quarter site. Circled in green is the ‘Pepper Pot’ tower that the developer wants to retain as part of its regeneration. The tower circled in red is earmarked for demolition.
Nightingale Quarter Estates also agreed that 10% of the homes it builds – if granted permission – would be “affordable housing”.
In the recommendation part of his report, Mr Gartside said the proposed demolition of one of the pepper pot facades was a “regrettable part of the outline application” – but that consent should still be granted.
The ten councillors sitting on the planning committee clearly disagreed.
Meanwhile, councillors also rejected plans for a new Lidl store in Chellaston at the same meeting.
Source: Derby Telegraph