PROPOSALS for more than 60 extra care apartments in Blacon have taken a step forward.
Outline approval for the development, proposed at Highfield County Junior and Infant School on Blacon Point Road, was agreed by a Cheshire West and Chester Council planning board on Tuesday.
The school buildings would be demolished to make way for the development.
In January this year, an application for 70 extra care apartments was deferred as councillors felt it would be detrimental to the amenity of occupiers at 22 Blacon Point Road.
The alterations which have been made remove two floors of development closest to the neighbour but reduce the number of apartments to 63.
The application was called into the board by Blacon Cllr Reggie Jones (Lab).
Cllr Jones said that although he supports the need for extra care, he felt that due to the ‘significant local interest’ the application should be considered in public.
Originally planning officers had 17 objections and a 52 signature petition.
These raised a series of concerns including the loss of a playing field.
The new scheme has led to eight objections.
Neighbours say they welcome the changes which have been made but their objections still stand.
Councillors heard there should be a balance between the benefit to the community and the effect on residents.
Cllr Jones commented: “I question whether the balance is OK.
“The disadvantage to residents is a real fear.
“They need some degree of confidence their concerns have been addressed.”
He asked for a replacement playing field to be subject to consultations with the Blacon Community Forum and with local people.
The board agreed the outline plans could be approved after Cllr Don Beckett (Lab, Winsford, North and East) commented: “I believe this will be one of the better extra care facilities in West Cheshire.”