A NEW developer wants to build houses on a controversial site in Highburton.
Bellway Homes (Yorkshire) Ltd, of Wetherby, has bought 42 housing plots on a development site at Southfield Mills on Burton Acres Lane.
The plots were bought from Barratt Leeds, which is building 112 homes at Southfield Mills.
Barratt gained permission to build its homes in February.
But because Bellway wants to change the design of the 42 houses, it has had to apply for planning permission from Kirklees Council.
The homes are expected to be a mix of two to three storey detached, semi and terraced properties and apartments.
No objections have been made about the Bellway plans yet.
But the Barratt development provoked a fierce campaign from local residents.
The war between residents and developer first started when plans were submitted in 2002.
People feared the development was too large and would swamp the area with traffic.
They felt local schools and services could not cope and also thought the tall buildings would be out of keeping with the surrounding area.
The application was turned down in August 2003, because councillors on the Heavy Woollen Planning Committee were worried losing an industrial site would reduce employment opportunities in the area.
Barratt said the 10 acre site was no longer suitable for industry.
It revised its plans to try and address residents concerns.
In February this year, permission given for development - despite over 150 letters of protest.
Objections were made by residents, Kirkburton Civic Society and the specially- formed Southfield Mills Action committee.
Kirklees Clr Mark Hemingway, who represents Kirkburton, said residents' reaction to the Bellway application was cautious.
He said: "I think if the alterations they are proposing have no more impact than Barratt's development, people will be happy.
"But it will be a case of wait and see."
However, he said he is worried that the new application might delay long-awaited resurfacing of Burton Acres Road.
He said: "The road is in a dangerous state of repair.
"The council refuse to resurface the road because it will need to be dug up to put in services to the new houses.
"When planning consent is given, the developer is allowed up to 5 years to build.
"This means that the road might not be resurfaced for another five years."