Council adopts Site Allocation Plan which will see thousands of home built across North Somerset

PUBLISHED: 07:00 27 April 2018

Elfan Ap Rees.

Elfan Ap Rees.

Sub

More than 20,000 homes will be built in North Somerset after the council adopted the new Site Allocations Plan (SAP).

The housing initiative has been reviewed by a Government inspector and now ratified by council members.

The SAP has seen North Somerset Council had to allocate room where 20,985 houses could be built between 2006-2026 to cope with the area’s housing shortfall – many of these have already been built.

The main aim of the plan, as well as to create more housing, is to support and encourage more economic growth in the area.

The adoption of the plan will mean it is an official part of future development in the district.

Cllr Elfan Ap Rees, whose executive portfolio includes housing, told the council: “It is important it locks in the criteria within North Somerset and it is important we accept it as it will stop people from just simply developing where they like within the authority.

“It will give us, at long last, control about where development takes place.

“The advantage of this is we can plan the infrastructure which is needed.”

The council had to find room for 20,985 homes but, due to concerns over the speed of delivery, were asked to find additional sites in September 2017. An additional 22 sites made up of 821 houses and flats were added and approved by the council’s executive last year.

The inspector said, through this process, the new allocated areas were capable of accommodating up to 23,080 houses – 2,095 more than was originally suggested.

The SAP has previously come under fire from North Somerset councillors and community action groups who raised concerns for how the large-scale development would impact their wards.

Cllr David Shopland, from Clevedon, said: “We have reached the stage we have to reach and I have reservations on the proposals.

“I am worried and sad The Vale [near Long Ashton] has been excluded from this as, to me, that was the most obvious place to develop.”

In the same meeting, the council also approved a plan to make 17 per cent of all future development capable of being adapted for disabled homeowners.

Cllr Ap Rees said the move would be ‘good news’ for anybody looking for an easy-access home.

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