CONTROVERSIAL plans to build nearly 100 homes on a former school site in Newport have been given the green light.

Councillors on the city council's planning committee voted to approve an outline application for up to 96 houses on the former site of Newport High School in Queen's Hill at a meeting on Wednesday.

A separate application to demolish the existing school meals service building on the St Mary’s School site and build a new canteen, play area and pick-up/drop off point for parents was also given approval at the meeting.

The application was previously deferred over concerns about emergency vehicle access, with worries about the size of the development also expressed.

And at the meeting on Wednesday, ward councillor David Fouweather called for the plans to be put on hold once again, claiming there was "insufficient information" to make a decision.

Cllr Fouweather said details about the height and distance measurements of the homes were missing, and also said further information was required in the traffic assessment.

But the agent for the applicant said the concerns had now been addressed.

Stephen Williams, from the council's planning department, said the planned access was "much-improved compared to the current state of affairs."

The meeting heard that the plans would see two options for emergency vehicle access to the site.

One being a via a lane that is currently used and the other using the new drop-off location serving St Mary's School.

Another application to build 92 homes on the site was previously approved and the meeting heard the former plans represented a "realistic fall back" if the new application was not supported.

The new plans will see a pelican crossing on Fields Road, rather than on Queen's Hill as previously proposed, and a 20mph speed limit imposed on Queen's Hill.

The plans will also see 14 affordable homes built, which is four more than the previous proposal.

However it is estimated to bring a slightly bigger increase in traffic, with four more vehicular trips in the morning and afternoon generated.

Speaking in support, Cllr Miqdad Al-Nuaimi said previous concerns had been addressed in a 'comprehensive' report.

But Cllr Val Dudley said she still had "great reservations" about aspects of the scheme and put forward a proposal for a site visit before deciding on the application.

However the motion was defeated, and an alternative to approve the plans was approved by a majority vote.