Have your say on meeting housing shortfall

A draft plan identifying the sites needed to meet North Somerset’s housing requirement goes out to public consultation this week.

A seven-week consultation period on the draft Site Allocations Plan will run from Thursday 10 March to Thursday 28 April.

Details of the plan and how to comment online will be on North Somerset Council’s website at www.n-somerset.gov.uk/sitesandpolicies from 10 March. Copies of the plan will also be available in all North Somerset’s libraries.

A number of drop-in sessions have been arranged by the council where residents can find out more about the plan and make their views known. These will be at:

  • Weston Library, Monday 21 March, 4pm-7pm
  • Nailsea Library, Tuesday 22 March, 4pm-7pm
  • Churchill Primary School, Wednesday 23 March, 4.30pm-7pm
  • Portishead Library, Thursday 24 March, 4pm-7pm
  • Clevedon Library, Tuesday 29 March, 4pm-7pm
  • Congresbury School Rooms, Wednesday 30 March, 4pm-7pm
  • Yatton Library, Thursday 31 March, 4pm-7pm
  • Winscombe Community Centre, Monday 4 April, 4pm-7pm.

Following the consultation period the plan will be finalised and submitted to a government inspector for examination. The inspector will then make his recommendations before the plan is formally adopted by the council in April next year.

As well as identifying existing and new sites for residential and employment uses, the draft plan also puts forward a number of ‘Local Green Space’ sites and ‘strategic gaps’ for protection from any development.

The plan has been drawn up following the Government’s decision that the number of houses to be built in North Somerset during the Core Strategy period of 2006-2026 should be increased to 20,985.

So far, since the start of the plan period, a total of 7,426 houses have been built in the district, leaving another 13,559 homes to deliver over the remaining 11 years of the plan.

Of these, 11,844 already have planning consent or are identified in previous plans, meaning sites still need to be found for a further 1,715 homes.

The plan says this shortfall can be met without needing to encroach on Green Belt land.