Rhyl homeless flats get permission
Plans for a four-flat development for the homeless in Rhyl have been given the green light.
Wednesday’s meeting of Denbighshire’s planning committee voted through the plans.
Two houses on Westbourne Avenue will be refurbished and converted into four one-bedroom apartments with ground floor office accommodation by the applicant Lyndon Wilson of the Adullam Housing Association.
But there has been strong local opposition to the plans over security fears, and the area’s county councillors – Joan Butterfield and Alan James – spoke against the scheme.
They argued that the plans were worthy but in the wrong place.
Nearby residents had submitted a 43-signature petition against the supported accommodation, after concerns were raised about those using it and the lack of overnight staffing arrangements.
Cllr Butterfield said: “The residents convened a public meeting to discuss this application and their anxieties around it.
“The area has some beautiful houses and if these Victorian houses were brought back into use as family homes no one would have a problem with that. It would provide quality homes for two families.
“However, I have got to say that this area is made up of flats, private properties and new builds. This area is quite a difficult area with parking. Parking problems have been brought about by the increase in flats in the area.
“Two of the four flats proposed do not fit the regulations of our local authority. They are too small and I believe it would set a precedent that any developer coming into this area could develop a property because we have already reduced down the living space on these two properties.
“This would result in a reduced quality of life for those who take up residence.
“I’ve also got to question the logic of bringing vulnerable people into an area where we have existing problems.”
Cllr James said: “There are a lot of concerns. We have had several public meetings about those concerns and I am surprised that no one from the housing association has made a representation to the meeting. “
But Cllr Tony Thomas, the cabinet member responsible for housing, argued there was a need for housing of this type in the area.
He said: “These buildings have been derelict for a number of years now and the prospects of any private developer are slim.”
Members of the committee voted by 12 votes to two in favour of granting planning permission.
By Shane Brennan – Local Democracy Reporter
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