A DECISION on the “largest development plan in the Bradford District” is due to be made in Autumn – over two years after the proposals were first announced.

The Esholt Positive Living Development is a huge scheme that would see 150 homes, 100,000 square metres of employment development and a community hub created on redundant areas of the Esholt Water Treatment Site.

The employment side of the development is predicted to create 2,750 jobs.

A planning application for the scheme was first submitted in Summer 2019, and Bradford Council has now revealed that it plans to make a decision on whether to allow the plans to go ahead this Autumn.

When first announced, Yorkshire Water said the development would be one of the “country’s leading sustainable industrial and residential developments.”

Along with Keyland Developments the company submitted an application to completely transform sections of Yorkshire Water’s 32 acre site that were no longer used.

It said that proposals to use the heat, power and water generated by the treatment works to make the site more eco friendly would make it a “nationally significant” development.

Around 30 of the houses would be social housing, and there would also be small shops included in the development.

When a number of local developments were being discussed at a meeting of Bradford Council’s Executive earlier this month Chief Executive Kersten England referred to the Esholt scheme as the biggest planned development in the District.

However, the plan has not been a universally popular one.

Almost 200 people have written to Bradford Council to object to the plans.

Many have urged the Council to refuse the application, and instead work on converting the site into a nature reserve.

One objector claims the development will increase the “urban sprawl” between Bradford and Leeds, while others raise concerned about traffic.

A petition calling for a nature reserve and conservation hub to be built on the site has been singed by 725 people. It says a nature reserve in this area of Bradford would encourage people spend their recreation time locally.”

Leeds City Council has also questioned the plans, claiming the traffic assessment included in it has a “Bradford bias.” A response from the authority says the traffic reports in the application are based on future residents and staff mainly commuting to and from Bradford rather than Leeds, which LCC disputes would be the case.

Leeds Council has called for the developer to pay towards a number of road improvement schemes in Leeds if the application is approved – including improvements to the Horsforth Roundabout, which is 3.7 miles from the site.

The Telegraph & Argus asked Bradford Council when a decision was likely to be made on the application, considering it was first submitted two years ago.

A Bradford Council spokesperson, said: “This is the largest current development proposal in Bradford district and we have sought to ensure it delivers high quality growth and features sustainability at its core.

“The challenge is to deliver high quality of growth and sustainability and this complex submission has now been updated. The lodged application has focussed on key areas of highways, flood prevention, biodiversity and sustainability.

“The application will be considered by the planning committee this autumn.”