Changes to Calderdale’s Local Plan were approved by the Cabinet last night in response to concerns raised by the Planning Inspector during the first stage of examination.
The new proposals would change the housing requirement from 840 to 997 annually, an increase of 157 homes per year. These additional homes would be delivered mainly through a greater concentration of houses within existing sites which are close to good transport links, for example within town centres.
A six week public consultation on these proposals will be held from October to November 2019 and the comments will then be shared with the Planning Inspector before the second stage of examination.
The Local Plan identifies development areas for economic growth, and sites for new homes, over the next 15 years, and once approved, will be reviewed in years five and 10.
Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Resources, Cllr Jane Scullion said:
“This is about deciding what is right for Calderdale. We’re ambitious and want to support economic growth and prosperity within our borough. We also want to make sure that people are able to both live and work in Calderdale, that they can find good quality jobs here rather than have to commute beyond our borders.
“And it’s equally important that we protect our environment, ensuring that the homes which are built here are sustainable and that we defend the Green Belt, which makes Calderdale so distinctive.”
The Planning Inspector wrote to the Council in July 2019 having concluded that the housing need within Calderdale’s Local Plan was likely to be higher than the 840 homes per year that the Council had originally proposed.
A more realistic figure was likely to be at least 1000 new homes annually, based upon the projected economic growth and housing demand.
In response the Council commissioned a study into the relationship between economic growth and housing need which concluded that 1,040 homes per year would be needed.
These findings were then used by the Council’s Local Plan Working Party to consider how the requirement for new housing can be met sustainably and with the minimum impact on the Green Belt. The observations from this were used to inform the Cabinet’s decision.
Any significant changes to the Local Plan can only be made by the Inspector; however the Council is able to raise potential changes during the examination process.
Any significant delays to the adoption of the Local Plan could lead to intervention by the Government.
The Cabinet has already approved tough new targets to tackle climate change within the Local Plan after declaring a climate emergency in January 2019.
The Inspector will be asked to update the Climate Change chapter of the Local Plan to include a commitment within Calderdale to reduce greenhouse gases by 60% to 2032 compared to levels in 2005. This will be discussed with the Inspector during the second stage of examination hearings.
The draft Local Plan supports the ‘Vision2024 for Calderdale’ themes of distinctiveness, resilience and enterprise.
The year 2024 marks Calderdale’s 50th birthday. Where do we want to be by 2024? Get involved with the debate on Twitter with #VisionCdale2024 and find out more at www.calderdale.gov.uk/vision