Climate change at heart of council's future plans

St Albans district council has approved its new corporate plan.

St Albans district council has approved its new corporate plan. - Credit: Archant

A vision for the future of the district which will combat the climate emergency, deliver more social housing, support local businesses and provide enhanced community facilities has been approved by the council.

Alongside efforts to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, the council's top priority will be working to address the climate emergency, and the Sustainability and Climate Crisis Strategy sets out the actions to be taken locally to reach zero carbon emissions by 2030.

A meeting of the full council heard how SADC is pressing ahead with the redevelopment of the City Centre Opportunity Site – the area in and around the site of the former police station. It is also developing various plots of council-owned land in St Albans, London Colney and Harpenden to provide new homes for people on the district’s housing register, and further temporary accommodation for homeless people. 

Work continues alongside St Albans BID and other partners across the district to help businesses affected by the pandemic through the government’s grants programme, and to support them as they come out of the lockdown. 

Council leader Cllr Chris White said after the meeting: “Coronavirus continues to present great challenges.  Not least is the social and economic damage to many local people and businesses, and the huge budget gaps that public service providers like the council are left with. 

“We need to ensure that we continue to listen to businesses and local people and work with our partners to address their needs. It is evident that there is a need for new plans, for example in the areas of street markets, City Centre Vision, cultural strategy and destination management.” 

He said new community facilities are also being developed: “Significant improvements to local leisure and museum facilities have been made over the last few years, including most recently in Harpenden.  But community halls and similar facilities elsewhere also need improving.  Our work to develop the Marlborough Pavillion in the Sopwell area continues, and we will be redeveloping Fleetville Community Centre as well.”