People across Plymouth, the South Hams and West Devon will be able to comment on proposals outlined in the Joint Local Plan ahead of it being submitted to a Government inspector.
A final consultation starts today (15 March) and runs until 26 April, but there are strict guidelines about what people can comment on and how, so that the independent Planning Inspector can be satisfied that the plan has been is prepared properly.
The Joint Local Plan, which looks at where development, infrastructure and homes could go across the area over the next 18 years, was approved by all three councils recently.
The Government inspector needs to be satisfied that the plan is sound. The test of soundness looks to see if the plan has been drawn up according to Government guidelines, is consistent with national and regional policy, has properly considered all relevant issues and has taken into consideration the views of the community and other city strategy documents.
Planning officers will be available at workshop sessions across the plan area to help people make their comments and understand the process and the first Plymouth session is on Thursday (tomorrow) at Central Library from 4pm to 7.30pm.
Deputy Leader of Plymouth City Council Patrick Nicholson said: “We are now in the final stages of preparation before the entire plan goes to the inspector and I’d like to thank all those who have contributed so far.”
“The next phase will be different and has to be done in a particular way. These sessions should help people be clear in what they need to do to make a representation.”
Cllr Michael Hicks, Executive Portfolio Holder for Strategy and Commissioning added: “This is an excellent document and a lot of hard work has gone into it. Our new Joint Local Plan has been produced with great care to ensure that there is a considered balance between the needs of as many of our residents as possible. It is also a very detailed document and we are anxious to ensure that all interested parties are given the opportunity to comment during the consultation period. The Plan for our Towns and Villages covers the time up to 2034.”
Cllr Graham Parker, Lead Member for Strategic Planning said: “The Joint Local Plan continues the longstanding policy of protecting our beautiful countryside and focusing development in the main towns and large villages.
“This is a strategy that, over the years, has proven to be the most sustainable way of developing in the Borough. Working with Plymouth and South Hams has enabled us to plan for development across the whole Housing Market Area and prioritise development where it is most suitable in relation to a City and some key regional towns.”
All comments will be published online and passed onto the Planning Inspector who decides which representations need addressing and who needs to participate in the Public Examination.
The Planning Inspector will seek views on whether the plan is sound and meets the tests set out in the National Planning Policy Framework i.e. whether:
The three councils have planned for the area’s housing, employment and infrastructure needs
- The plan is based on sound evidence
- The plan can be delivered by 2034; and
- The plan is consistent with national policy and enables sustainable development.
Comments need to relate to the soundness of the plan or to its compliance with legal requirements.
The best way to comment on the Joint Local Plan is through the consultation portal, however we will also accept comments via email firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com or via post
Comments need to be made by midnight on 26 April 2017.
The first wave of sessions in Plymouth
- Central Library Thursday 16 March 4pm to 7.45pm
- Woolwell (The Woolwell Centre) Saturday 18 March 10am to 2pm
- Plympton Library Monday 20 March 9am to 12.30pm
- Bickleigh (Roborough Recreation Hall) Thursday 23 March 3pm to 7pm
- West Park Library Wednesday 29 March 2pm to 5pm
In South Hams and West Devon
- Dartington Meadowbrook Social Club Wednesday 15 March 2pm to 6pm
- Yealmpton Parish Room Thursday 16 March 3pm to 7pm
- Tavistock Local Matters, Elbow Lane Friday 17 March 3pm to 7pm
- Totnes Methodist Church Friday 17 March 3pm to 7pm
- Okehampton Ockment Centre Saturday 18 March 3pm to 7pm
- Woolwell, the Woolwell Centre Saturday 18 March 10am to 2pm
- Dartmouth Guildhall Monday 20 March 3pm to 7pm
- Hatherleigh Community Centre Monday 20 March 3pm to 7pm
- Kingsbridge, Quay House, Room 3 Tuesday 21 March 3pm to 7pm
- Bere Alston Bere Alston Parish Hall Tuesday 21 March 3pm to 7pm