PLANS for a multi-million-pound development on Pomona Island that includes 526 flats spread across three tower blocks have been approved.

The vast stretch of barren wasteland around the Pomona Metrolink will now undergo a dramatic transformation, having stood desolate for years.

Planners at Trafford town hall agreed on the blueprints to revamp the deserted dockland during Thursday’s meeting but labelled the scheme "underwhelming".

The blocks, which are 15, 17 and 19 storeys high, will comprise 216 one bedroom flats, 274 two beds and 36 three beds.

Developer X1 Developments, which is behind the plans, is responsible for a string of new apartment blocks across Manchester and Liverpool.

The firm boasts, on its website, that each apartment blocks will be worth between £31 million and £37 million.  

The development forms part of a regeneration of the Pomona Island area, which will be renamed Manchester Waters under X1 Development’s vision.

The 22-acre site, owned by Peel Holdings, is on the Manchester Ship and Bridgewater canals and straddles Manchester, Salford and Trafford.

The site has been split into twelve development plots, with eight for flats, two for retail and leisure and one for commercial business.

Cllr Geraldine Coggins said: “I’m a bit underwhelmed and disappointed with the development.

“Essentially, what we have is just an island with homes on it ­— there is no corner shop and very little recreational space.

“I’m concerned about the scheme ­— and I’m not convinced it’s a good idea.”

Committee chairman Cllr Laurence Walsh said he was also underwhelmed by the development ­— and shared members concerns.

“What we are getting is a piecemeal development,” he said.

“We wanted affordable homes on site, more open space, a play area and travel plan ­— but we didn’t get any of that.

“But taking all that into consideration, the application is what it is ­— and I think this is the best we’re going to get.

“People will buy properties here, it’s in an ideal location, so for that reason, I say we should grant planning permission.”

Building has already commenced on neighbouring Pomona Wharf, at the St George’s Island end of Pomona, with two blocks of 216 apartments under construction.

An apartment in the complex is for sale on Rightmove for £199,995 and promises to be ready by the end of this year.

The Pomona Island area originally opened in 1845 and promised an idyllic escape from hectic city life.

Locals enjoyed attractions including a billiard room, shooting gallery and bowling room.

The area became a dockland site until the 1970s when it fell into disrepair. Since then, it has been left overgrown and abandoned.

Previous attempted redevelopments of the area have been heavily criticised by locals and campaigners.

Plans by developer Rowlinson in 2015 to build two blocks of flats on the site attracted more than 100 letters of objection and an online petition with over 1,600 signatures.

But the fortune of the site may be about to change.

Trafford Council says that it is “minded to grant planning permission” to the new apartment blocks, provided that X1 Developments contribute £1,353,906 to building 24 affordable houses off-site.