North Somerset set to leave joint housing plan

North Somerset Council is set to leave a joint plan to build more than 100,000 homes across the region over the next 15 years.

Members are due to meet tomorrow (January 7) to discuss leaving the Joint Spatial Plan, which was developed by Bristol, South Gloucestershire, North Somerset, and Bath and North East Somerset councils to set out a framework for housing and development for the region until 2036.

But the joint plan was rejected by government planning inspectors in September 2019.

North Somerset councillors will now vote on going it alone and developing their own local plan instead, which cover a wide spectrum of development, not just that of building homes.

It will also explore employment space, transport infrastructure, town centres, shops, leisure facilities and open spaces.

‘Let it be clear, it’s not the council’s intention simply to dust off the proposals of the failed joint spatial plan and represent them in a new form,’ said executive member for planning, Cllr James Tonkin.

‘The local plan is a key document which will eventually become an overarching planning policy that guides development across our area. It’s vitally important that we get it right and we’ll be inviting residents and other partners in the New Year to get involved in the creation of the document,’ added Cllr Tonkin.

‘We must all recognise that the need to provide more homes, employment and infrastructure hasn’t gone away. We’ll need an honest conversation about what our community needs, now and in the future and we’ll need to ensure that all sections of our community are listened to, not just those with the loudest voices.

‘Our priority is to deliver sustainable growth in a way that best meets the needs of our community. We’ll need to listen to the arguments, look at the evidence and try to make the best decisions we can.’

Photo Credit – 3844328 (Pixabay)


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