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Local Plan for 2030 moves step closer

by Jim Dunton Fri 21 February 2014, 11:59 am

A long-term planning blueprint for Hounslow has been endorsed by the authority's top councillors.

Members of  Hounslow Council’s cabinet gave their approval to a draft Local Plan for the years from 2015-2030, which pledges to deliver a minimum of 822 homes a year, as well as vibrant new economic opportunities for the borough.

The document now needs the backing of a meeting of all councillors before it can go out to public consultation for a final time, ahead of expected adoption in March next year.

As well as identifying strategies for each of the borough’s major centres, and expected areas of economic growth, the draft Local Plan names 71 development areas lined up to help meet the housing target, which adds up to 12,330 new homes over the document’s life. The figure is a significant increase on the 45 sites contained in an earlier draft of the plan.

The document also flags up an employment land review from 2011, which suggested that the borough would need around 200,000 sq metres of new office space by 2030, based on the assumption that its existing 750,000 sq metre office stock was retained.

Hounslow said the draft plan directed development towards areas that had capacity for change, including the borough’s town centres and the area around the Great West Road, while other sites of natural or architectural significance would be protected.

Councillor Steve Curran, Hounslow’s cabinet member for planning, regeneration and housing, said the draft plan was the blueprint for what the borough expected to see built.

“It also sets out locations for potential new homes for families, where facilities such as schools should be built and where shops and services should be provided,” he said.

“But the Local Plan isn't just about building, it’s about preserving areas that we want to keep as they are, and protecting and improving the local environment.

“We’ve worked hard to get input from as many people and interested groups as possible, and their views have been taken on board in the draft plans we have produced.”

Assuming the draft is backed by full council, it is expected to be submitted to secretary of state for communities Eric Pickles for consideration in the summer, after a final round of public consultation.

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