'Tough decisions' on housing plans will have to be made says SDC's planning member
STROUD District Council is bracing itself for strong public opposition as it brings forward plans to build between 2,725 and 4,960 new homes across the Five Valleys by 2031, according to the executive member for planning.
Councillor Dennis Andrewartha (Lib Dem, Cam West) has said he expects SDC will 'hear passionate views' and receive 'a great deal of criticism' as the proposals are discussed, debated and ultimately finalised.
"Virtually everyone is agreed that we need to build homes for future generations, in fact even now the shortage of affordable homes is desperate, but when it comes to where they should be built, there will be a great deal of disagreement," he said.
Cllr Andrewartha said it was vital councillors listened to the 'objective and professional assessments' of the authority's planning officers.
He added: "We have tough decisions to make but ultimately I am sure that all our councillors will make well-informed decisions to achieve the best result, not just for one area, but for the entire district."
Cllr Andrewartha, who leads his party on SDC, is due to present a report at Ebley Mill on Tuesday, March 5, outlining the council's preferred sites for housing and the exact numbers which need to be built.
The report is likely to be fine-tuned before being incorporated into the district's draft Local Plan, which will then be subject to further consultation.
For coverage of the planning meeting see next week's SNJ.