A LONG-RUNNING housing project which would see 50 homes being built in Blaenavon has taken the next step towards completion.

Plans for the development at New Road Farm on Varteg Road went before the council’s planning committee on Tuesday and were recommended for approval.

Approval for 112 houses at the site was originally granted in 2006 as part of a larger project at the site.

However, only 12 properties were built before works stopped during the recession, says a council report.

The current applicant bought the site in 2013, finishing work on the southern section of the site.

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Since that time the southern section of the site has been constructed and work is now expected to move ahead with a revised plan in the northern section.

A planning application for this was originally sought in 2018, however changes have now been made to the proposal to comply with the council’s previous recommendations.

These changes include the inclusion of a wall around two of the plots, the addition of gates to some pathways to the side of properties, the relocation of some parking spaces, and the shortening of a wall along the northern boundary of the site.

The application features 17 two-bed houses, 23 three-bed houses, seven houses with three to four bedrooms, and three four-bed houses.

Cllr Huw Bevan questioned the planning officer on the availability of social housing in the development.

The planning officer confirmed 20 of the properties could be occupied by Registered Social Landlords as affordable housing, but no agreement has yet been made.

The amount of green space available was also up for debate, with councillors concerned there was no children’s play area, which had been included when the proposals were originally submitted.

The planning officer said there would be “a finger of green space” running from north to south through the site, linking into the band of public open space which runs through the already developed section of the New Road Farm development.

Blaenavon councillor Janet Jones said Blaenavon Park was a 10 minute walk away.

There had been some concerns the development would not fit in with the aesthetic of the World Heritage Town of Blaenavon.

A Heritage Impact Assessment was included in the council report put before the committee.

The report read: “The design of the proposed dwellings is considered to be acceptable. The homes would include features such as chimneys, sash windows and natural slate roofs and would be finished in stone, red brick and render.

“Therefore, the proposed homes reflect the character of traditional properties in Blaenavon and continue to follow the high design standard set with the first phase of the New Road Farm scheme.”

The new plans were recommended for approval unanimously by the planning committee, subject to a Section 106 agreement.

This requires the developer to follow several conditions when undertaking the work ranging from ecology, drainage and visual amenity to highway safety.

A final decision will be made on the proposal at the full council meeting on Tuesday, October 22.