A Green Party Councillor has written to Council leader Phil Bialyk seeking assurances about the Clifton Hill site ahead of a full Council meeting next Tuesday, when the future of the site will be discussed . Cllr Andy Ketchin is demanding that at least 35% of the homes built at the site are affordable, that homes are suitable for long term occupation and that green spaces are protected.
Andy Ketchin, who is Green Party Councillor in Newtown and St Leonard’s, said:
“I am demanding urgent answers on the future of the Clifton Hill site following the announcement at last week’s Executive meeting that the Council will have to buy back the site having sold it to its own housing company, Exeter City Living (ECL).
“Labour must keep their promises to the community to protect the green spaces around the site which had not been included when the site was sold to ECL. These were hard won commitments made after a successful campaign by former councillor, Jemima Moore.”
Green councillor Diana Moore added:
“The Council must also ensure that decent homes are built to the highest environmental standards and that at least 35% of the homes are affordable. And they should steer their obsession with ‘co-living’ developments well away from this site. We need decent homes that meet adequate space standards, not another block of cramped bedsits.”
 Letter in full:
Dear Cllr Bialyk,
I am writing further to the meeting of the Executive where the future plight of Clifton Hill site was discussed. I have the following questions which I am writing to ask you for reassurance before the Council meeting next week:
Are the valuations ONLY for for the land sold to Exeter City Living OR will the valuation also include the green space, ski slope and golf driving range which are still owned by ECC?
The affordable housing obligation was removed by the ECC planning committee on the express assurance that this would enable a grant to be drawn down from Homes England to build affordable housing and a matching commitment from the Council’s Housing
Revenue Account to buy that affordable housing.
Please can you confirm:
Does that grant funding offer / arrangement remain in place?
Is the Council (HRA) still committed to buy the affordable housing on that site once developed?
Will the Council ensure that 35% of the housing on the site is affordable in line with the Council’s own planning policy?
Will the homes still be built to passivhaus standard?
Site uses: Can you confirm that the site will only be sold for development of housing for long term residential occupancy?
Viability: Given your previous personal commitment not to allow the construction of PBSA on the site - please can you state which type of viability assessment will be used to assess viability of the site?
Cllr Andy Ketchin, Newtown and St Leonard’s ward