Moment of truth for the Sutton Coldfield green belt
Area A. Hill Wood, East of Watford Gap, North of Mere Green/Roughley
12th September 2013
Schedule for Birmingham City Council’s pre-submission version of the Local Plan authorisation revealed.
Birmingham City Council, as part of their Birmingham Development Plan 2031, is looking at opportunities in the city for housing and employment throughout Birmingham and the surrounding area. It is all part of their Core Strategy, which aims to continue regeneration and growth throughout Birmingham for the next 20 years.
Right now, Birmingham City Council are just finalising the pre-submission version of the Local Plan and I am informed by the Council’s Planning Department, this will be presented to the Cabinet in October 2013 for approval, with authorisation by the City Council in December 2013.
The City Council has made no definite decision to identify green belt land in the Sutton Coldfield area for development – nor has it come to a view on which of the option locations would be most suitable for development should green belt development be considered appropriate.
The green belt decision will be made by the Cabinet and Council informed by the approach set out in the papers put before them. The present time these papers are under preparation and the agenda and papers are published in advance of the meetings.
Sutton Coldfield is blessed with a swathe of beautiful agricultural land to the East of the ward and it is this that makes the area feel very rural and leafy – but they’re now at risk.
The Council has been evaluating proposals to build as many as 10,000 houses and 50 hectares of land for employment on the Sutton Coldfield green belt, much to the anger of local residents.
One of the major issues is that sufficient land isn’t available in Birmingham to meet said targets, so greenbelt sites are being considered.
The Council has previously reported it has a requirement to build 80,000 new homes between now and 2031, but only has capacity for 50,000 dwellings, with the remaining 30,000 to be constructed outside of the city boundary.
The City Council says it is talking to neighbouring Local Authorities about allocating some of Birmingham’s housing shortfall in their boundaries, but has not made a specific request to any adjoining Local Authority with regard to the scale and distribution of any shortfall in housing provision. Any such request from the Council will need to be substantiated by the necessary joint evidence which it is envisaged will be provided by on-going work on a Strategic Spatial Plan for the Great Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise (GBSLEP) and additional technical evidence commissioned to underpin this.
So plenty of work still to be done.
Providing there on no complications, the statutory public consultation period will begin after the Christmas holiday, probably during January and February 2014, and residents will have an opportunity to express their concerns and submit valid objections against the proposals during this time.
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