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Local Plan consultation approved by Executive

June 11, 2021 8:00 AM

Mayor Dave HodgsonOn Wednesday evening Bedford Borough Council Executive approved the next stage of consultation for the Local Plan 2040, which is set to begin later this month.

Local Plans set out where growth and development will take place- everything from homes and jobs to schools and infrastructure.

The Council is preparing a new Local Plan 2040 and will be asking for your views. Some Local Plan 2030 policies are being updated earlier than normal in order to keep them in line with national policies, for example related to the Government's new formula for housing growth, and the Oxford to Cambridge Arc.

This consultation, set to run over the summer, will be asking for views on a development strategy to 2040 and where growth can be delivered.

Based on the Government's latest methodology, the new Local Plan needs to allocate land for a minimum of 12,500 additional new dwellings and space for around 8,650 jobs.

Last year, the Council asked for your thoughts about the different kinds of location where growth might take place. These have fed into four short-listed options focused on the urban area, the A421 corridor and existing and planned rail stations. Three of these include one or two new settlements.

More details and maps will be available on the Council's website at www.bedford.gov.uk/localplan2040

The consultation will also ask for views on town centre and retail policies to support a flexible future for our town centres, and updated policies looking at impact on the environment, the quality of development and self and custom build homes.

Mayor Dave Hodgson said "Our Local Plan 2030 was approved in January last year, but with a need to plan for the longer-term around the Oxford-Cambridge Arc we carried out a review of its policies. Responses to that review, which took place last summer, have fed into this consultation helping to set the timeframe to 2040 so the Plan covers a further 10 years, and to identify the policy areas that the new Plan should cover. The consultation paper will set out several proposals for where housing and employment growth could be located up to 2040, as well as looking at the future of our town centre. Please give us your thoughts about the future of your Borough when this consultation opens later this month."

Further details about how to have your say will be available ahead of the consultation beginning towards the end of June.