Flood barrier works set to get the green light – closing a key York route for more than a year

Plans for flood barrier works at Clementhorpe are set to be approved – despite controversy over the impact on Terry Avenue and Butcher Terrace.

City of York Council’s planning committee will discuss the project at a virtual meeting on Thursday. Planning officers have recommended the scheme be approved.

Under the plans, Terry Avenue will be closed from July until October 2021 – for work to take place on the route. And land at the end of Butcher Terrace close to Millennium Bridge would be used as the site compound.

But as the route is popular with cyclists and pedestrians, the Environment Agency has outlined some changes.

The report says the site compound will be located north of the cycle path between Butcher Terrace and Millennium Bridge, passing places for construction vehicles provided along Terry Avenue, speed restrictions on the access route and pedestrian safety barriers.

It says Terry Avenue will be fully closed while work is carried out, with diversions put in place, as it is not possible to maintain safe access for cyclists and pedestrians.

And the public protection team says predicted vibration levels from the work are likely to lead to complaints from residents in some locations.

‘Desperately needed’

The York Cycle Campaign raising awareness of the plans near Terry Avenue last year. Photograph: the campaign on Twitter

The work will also see parking suspended on the north side of Butcher Terrace throughout the work – as up to 30 construction vehicles a day use the route. Spaces will be provided for residents in a temporary area of grass near the site compound.

Several petitions and 154 objection letters were received in response to the plans – including concerns over the closure of Terry Avenue and the impact on Butcher Terrace.

Letters of support said flood barriers to protect Clementhorpe are “desperately needed” and that long term advantages outweigh the short term disruption.

Planning officers conclude: “While it is noted there will be temporary disruption to local residents and users of the affected public highways, this disruption has been reduced as much as realistically possible given the unavoidable constraints of access to the site.

“The temporary disruption to local residents and users of the affected public highways should also be considered against the long term personal and economic disruption that would occur if the flood defences are not installed and there is a flooding incident in Clementhorpe that otherwise would have been prevented.”

They add that disruption must be weighed against the risk of preventable flooding.

The meeting takes place on Thursday (11 June) at 10.30am on the council’s YouTube channel.