Talks begin on future housing for Herts

PUBLISHED: 20:00 06 September 2009 | UPDATED: 14:24 06 May 2010

CONSULTATION about future housing growth in the county began last week amid calls that the proposals should be mothballed. The East of England Regional Assembly is running a consultation on the proposed housing figures for their 2031 Plan which proposes i

CONSULTATION about future housing growth in the county began last week amid calls that the proposals should be mothballed.

The East of England Regional Assembly is running a consultation on the proposed housing figures for their 2031 Plan which proposes increasing the level of housing across the region to meet government housing growth targets.

The options proposed for Herts are between 75,000 and 107,000 additional homes to be built in the county between 2011 and 2031 - not including a total of 35,500 on the boundaries of the county which will impinge on Herts.

Cllr Derrick Ashley, executive member for planning at County Hall, urged local people to respond to the consultation.

"Unless we try and influence the overall scale of development and how it is distributed, then we can't complain if the final Plan comes up with something we don't like."

St Albans MP, Anne Main, has called on the government to "mothball" its regional planning strategies.

She said: "I think it is appalling that this government, in its death throes, is trying to push ahead with regional planning strategies for the next 22 years, with these sham "consultations" to pretend that they are giving local people a say."

She said she had been given a guarantee by Shadow Communities Secretary Caroline Spelman that a future Conservative Government would abolish regional strategies and planning bodies.

She added: "In St Albans this would mean a review of not only the controversial housing targets but also the imposed targets for gipsy and traveller sites and I feel this is a necessary step if we are to give local people a real say.

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