Greenhill Special School

Greenhill School would be relocated if site is chosen for housing

Plans to identify land for new homes could also see building on Cardiff North’s green belt

GREENHILL Special School would be relocated if the site was earmarked for new house-building under Cardiff’s strategic plans.

The plan was submitted as part of the consultation process for Cardiff Council’s replacement Local Development Plan.

If approved, the 3.8 hectares of land around the school, which caters for students with ADHD, dyspraxia, and special educational needs, would be turned into residential properties.

“The Council’s Cabinet recently considered a proposal for Greenhill School,” said a Council spokesperson.

“The proposal included the relocation of the school to two alternative locations, and has therefore been presented as a potential candidate site for the new LDP.”

Meanwhile, a 164-hectare plot of land in the green belt north of Rhiwbina has also been submitted as a candidate site, with site proposers Wyndham Lewis Trust and Lightwood Planning outlining a plan to turn the area into a massive “residential-led, mixed-use” development.   

Map of the candidate site for a new housing development at Greenhill Special School, Rhiwbina

The proposals were revealed after Cardiff Council called on developers to submit potential sites for future housing developments earlier this year.

The council estimates that the city will need between 19,000 and 30,500 new homes in the next 15 years to house its growing population.

The potential developments, which have not been confirmed and will undergo an assessment process and further consultation next year, have already drawn criticism.

Members of a local Facebook group attacked the plans as “absolutely ridiculous” and showing a “distinct lack of thought by the Council and developers”.

Others criticised the prospect of developers building on protected green belt land.

Craig Evans, 58, who lives in Nine Giants, Llanishen, said: ““The area now called Thornhill was supposed to be a green belt where everyone could go and enjoy the countryside — now look at it.

“I don’t hold out any hopes of protecting these areas if the people who are supposed to be enforcing green belt laws just ignore them.”

Map of the candidate site for a new housing development in the green belt region in northern Cardiff

The new LDP, which was launched in March, replaces the previous development plan adopted in 2016, and will form the basis for decisions on land use and planning in Cardiff until 2036.

The plan sets out several different options for how Cardiff will manage housing over the next 15 years. The most ambitious of these would see new homes being built at a rate of over 2,000 properties a year.  

Thc Council is also planning focus groups to amplify voices from young people and groups that might otherwise be overlooked by the consultation. Stage one of the consultation, launched earlier this year, received only 1,215 responses.

“The replacement LDP is going to shape the look and feel of Cardiff for years to come,” said Coun Caro Wild, cabinet member for Strategic Planning and Transport.

“We are accessing a number of different scenarios on the possible levels of growth in Cardiff up to 2036, and the need for houses to be built to accommodate this growth.

“All the options that are presented in the consultation are potential options, rather than preferred options. All the feedback from the public will be considered, alongside further technical work, which will help the council prepare the Preferred Strategy.”    

The consultation on the replacement LDP will run for 10 weeks, until February 8, 2022. The results and the assessment of which candidate sites could form part of the replacement LDP will be published in autumn 2022.