‘We need a fair deal for new estates’.

New estates in Harrogate and Knaresborough are being let down by poor coordination between developers, utility companies and local authorities says local MP Andrew Jones. 

Mr Jones is speaking out after being contacted by residents of new estates across his constituency highlighting areas of uncompleted road surfaces, poor drainage, inadequate street lighting and missing signage.

Most recently Andrew was contacted by residents on Garten Close in Knaresborough who have endured over two years of unfinished roads and drainage. 

“Everyone needs to cooperate when new estates are being built to ensure that one organisation isn’t waiting for the other to do something without letting them know.

“The council’s role doesn’t end when planning permission has been given and the developer’s role doesn’t end when the houses are built.  Everyone involved needs to ensure that the estate as a whole is finished to a high standard with roads surfaced as soon as possible, surface water drainage that is effective, streetlights that work, street signs installed and so on.

“Expecting residents to be dodging ditches made during construction and tripping over unfinished kerbs is simply unacceptable as is leaving land in limbo when it should be adopted by the local authority or collectively managed by a resident-led management company.”

The MP is calling for new building guidelines setting minimum standards that need to be reached on new estates within a time limit agreed with the local council.

“Too often the impression is given that once the houses are up and sold the developer moves on to the next site and doesn’t prioritise the serious snagging issues they have left behind.  That is how residents in these areas feel and something I have seen first-hand.   People are trying to build new communities and to connect with new neighbours.  That is more difficult when your road looks and feels half-finished.”

Where residents contact him Andrew is taking up cases with developers and with the council.

In business questions Andrew asked for a debate about mandating housing developers, local authorities and utilities to co-operate to ensure developments are finished in a timely manner. Click below to watch Andrew’s question and the minister’s response.