The authority is looking for permission to knock down the two Highways tower blocks in York Road, Killingbeck, as the buildings are said to have reached the end of their lifespan.
A report, which is set to go before the council’s decision-making executive board next week, recommends agreeing to redevelopment the site for more social housing, adding it will help rehouse current residents. The report follows a move from the council back in the spring to suspend any new lettings on the buildings
Leeds City Council owns and manages the two blocks, both built in the early 1960s. Both are 10 storeys high and have a total 120 homes.
The report stated: “These blocks are safe to live in but and have exceeded their original design life, requiring significant investment to bring them up to the standards that the council wishes for their residents.”
The blocks were built using a building method from the 1960s which used pre-fabricated concrete panels. The council claims modern building guidance would require any refurbishment works to include “intrusive” and “costly” structural reinforcements, which would mean residents would have to move out regardless.
It added: “It was recognised [in April] that there was no workable refurbishment solution that would allow residents to stay in their homes whilst any works are carried out, given the scale and length of disruption involved. Thus residents would need to move out, irrespective of what option was taken in relation to the future of these blocks.”
All residents are expected to have been moved out by April 2021, as this is the council’s estimate of how long it will take to rehouse everyone. Demolition of the site is expected to have taken place by December 2022.
A decision is set to be taken by the Leeds City Council executive board on Wednesday, July 24.
What councillors are being asked to decide
- Under the recommendations section of the report, executive board members are asked to:
- Declare the properties of 62-121 Highways Killingbeck Leeds West Yorkshire LS14 6AS and 1-61 Highways Killingbeck Leeds West Yorkshire LS14 6AT surplus to requirements.
- Agree to take out of charge the properties of 62-121 Highways Killingbeck Leeds West Yorkshire LS14 6AS and 1-61 Highways Killingbeck Leeds West Yorkshire LS14 6AT.
- Agree that the buildings on the site should be safely demolished, creating a clear site for future use.
- Approve the serving of an initial demolition notice, in line with Housing Act
processes, in respect of tenants wishing to exercise their Right to Buy.
- Agree that the site should be developed as part of the Housing Growth programme, enabling new council housing to be built here in the future.
- Note that a separate report will follow from the Council Housing Growth Programme to detail and request approval for the proposed replacement housing scheme.