A recent city centre planning application for housing on Haymarket has been refused by council officers as it would mean that the “standard of living provided for residents would be unacceptably low”.
This is good but unfortunately, such applications are commonplace in Sheffield, especially around the city centre and Kelham Island.
They are being accepted despite having tiny room sizes, poor accessibility and severely restricted access to natural light, fresh air and green space. A single Green councillor on the Planning Committee is trying to ensure acceptable minimum standards, but Lib Dem and Labour councillors are routinely voting them through.
Sheffield Green Party fully agrees that there needs to be more affordable housing in these two priority ‘growth’ areas. However, this cannot be allowed at the expense of quality. Poorly designed and built housing with no balconies or green space not only impacts residents’ mental health and well-being, but diminishes the character of the areas in which they are constructed.
Electing more Greens in May would allow us to push for full adoption of South Yorkshire’s own housing standards; currently only used as ‘guidelines’. This would ensure there is not only more housing, but it is at a level Sheffielders both need and deserve.
Sheffield Green Party Councillor