Local plan discussion, led by key speakers Mike Slater, Assistant Director (Planning & Sustainable Development), Alison Cooke (Development Officer)
- Meeting of Formal Meeting, Rural West York Ward Committee, Tuesday, 23 August 2016 6.30 pm (Item 1.)
Alison Cooke explained that the local plan is going to be delivering a spatial vision for the city, with the key drivers being housing and employment growth. In shaping the plan, consideration has been given to environmental assets and what makes York unique, along with areas of high flood risk. Effort has been made to exclude areas of local space from the plan. It was noted that some of the larger sites included in the plan would have to provide extra facilities.
Since the initial plan taken to members in September/October 2014 the evidence base had been updated with more information upon flood risks, green belt, etc. Some of the listed sites had also been removed.
Housing growth will consist of 841 dwellings per annum. Currently, there is not a permanent green belt and there will be an additional five years (added to the initial fifteen) in terms of establishing the longevity of a green belt in York. It was noted that the plan covers a twenty year period.
It was noted that the consultation period will close on 12th September at 5pm and that comments will be taken on board.
Alison Cooke stated that the council is currently undertaking work upon the transport network in order to understand the impact.
York’s growth aspirations are based upon the national model for the country’s economic growth, which focusses upon cities. York has been looking to diversify its industries/businesses and as a city needs to change and adapt. York currently struggles to compete with Leeds for office development. It also needs to sit within a national picture of economic expansion.
A resident asked what the objective was regarding the current flow of traffic. It was noted that issues with the northern ring road are significant. Alison Cooke stated that development can fund part of that, but not all. What will follow and be aligned with the current proposals will be an infrastructure development plan, which will tie in with local plan.
A resident argued that functioning roads have aided development in other places, citing Selby as an example and stating that whereas Selby used to be a bottleneck, it now has a ring road and has since expanded its housing, population, etc. They stated that in order to facilitate growth, it is imperative that people are able to move around the city and that currently no one can move on the north side of the ring road. There is a strong feeling among the residents that the outer ring road should be duelled, but Mike Slater stated that the issue here was money, as this would require government funding. He stated that it has been put to the government, but is not something that they currently want to do.
Alison Cooke stated that the plan shows what York could potentially look like in twenty five years’ time and that the next stages will concern the roads and whether the plan is viable/deliverable.
A resident stated that a City of York Council document from 2013 had stated that the road cannot cope with current demand and questioned how it would cope with any expansion. Mike Slater stated that additional facilities (schools, open spaces, etc) would need to be added in order to make the expansion doable. Community infrastructure is needed in order to make the proposals attractive to developers.
A resident expressed concern about the open space in Boroughbridge Road potentially disappearing. Mike Slater stated that the pink colouring indicating development on the plan would not consist entirely of housing, and that within that toy would expect to find play areas, open space, etc. These kinds of proposals do not come until the next stage.
A resident asked if there had been any discussions with health trusts and GP surgeries over who will provide healthcare for all these people. Alison Cooke stated that service providers will be consulted, and that the strategic plan sets out what the city could look like in terms of land use.
A resident was concerned that there had been no discussion with Hambleton. Alison Cooke stated that there would be consultation with all local districts and that this was part of an ongoing process. This would be part of the transport infrastructure model.
Residents were reminded that the consultation period would be open until 12th September. Residents could collect yellow forms for consultation, although these would need to come back to the postal address on the forms. Alternatively, there is an online survey that can be emailed.