Council unveils its housing vision
9:00am Thursday 3rd October 2013 in News
A PLAN addressing Barry and the Vale’s housing and infrastructure needs up to 2026, has been unveiled.
The Vale of Glamorgan Local Development Plan, starting 2011 (CORR), is considered to be one of the most important documents in the authority’s history.
The original draft plan, produced and published for consultation by the previous Tory administration, was delayed a year following concerns about infrastructure, over-development in certain areas of Barry and consultation.
The new plan allocates land for housing and employment growth with associated infrastructure for transport, education, community facilities and open space.
A total of 9,950 dwellings are proposed plus a reserve site of 500 units at Sully which will only be developed in the latter phases if other housing allocations are not delivered.
Other key housing sites include 1,700 dwellings at Barry Waterfront and six sites in and around the St Athan Enterprise Zone with 1,300 dwellings and associated infrastructure including a northern access road.
Other housing and infrastructure allocations focus on Cowbridge, upper Cosmeston Farm, Dinas Powys, Rhoose, and Bonvilston.
The plan intends delivering 2,694 affordable dwellings and a permanent gypsy and traveller site at Hayes Road, Sully.
Transportation proposals include the Barry Island road and improvements to the Five Mile Lane.
Tourism and leisure developments at Barry Island Pleasure Park, Nell’s Point and Cottrell Park are favoured.
Development at Weycock Cross has been dismissed.
Weycock Cross Action Group chairman Frank Cleland, whose group has fought proposals to build 700 homes, said he hoped developers would abide by residents’ views and the Vale Council’s decision.
FocusBARRY (CORR) chairman Dennis Harkus said the housing target for the next 15 years lacked credibility.
He said: “Significant infrastructure improvements are vital and it is very disappointing there are no proposals for a new settlement.
“New settlements would offer significant environmental, social and economic advantages over the further expansion of housing in and around Barry.
“We do need more homes for people but we also need a diverse town where people can live.”
Vale Council cabinet member for regeneration, innovation, planning and transportation Cllr Lis Burnett said the plan was mindful of the need to regenerate and support communities and sought to achieve a balance between economic growth, social cohesion and environmental impact.
“The plan’s emphasis is on reusing previously developed land and minimising the need to develop on green fields,” she said. “Nowhere is this more apparent than in Barry where the emphasis is very much on the continued regeneration of the Waterfront.
“This Deposit Plan contains significantly more detail and evidence on where new education, community and healthcare facilities are required and also identifies new transport proposals and the open space needed to support and facilitate additional housing and employment allocations.”
She added: “One concern raised with us in relation to the previous deposit plan was that the statutory processes for consultation were difficult to understand and that there was not enough time or opportunity for those interested to consider the content of the plan before being asked to comment on it.”
But Vale MP Alun Cairns said he believed a six-week consultation in the run-up to Christmas was insufficient.
He said: “The consultation needs to be more meaningful and therefore I have asked them to extend the consultation to 12 weeks.
“Developers would be able to get their sites included with expert help, but residents would not have the assistance of professionals.”
The draft deposit LDP will be considered by the council’s elected members between October 7 and 23.
Informal drop-in information sessions, from 5.30pm to 8pm, will be held at the following: Paget Rooms, Penarth - Monday October 7; Dock Offices, Barry - Thursday, October 10; Lesser Hall, Town Hall, Cowbridge - Monday, October 14; Old School, Llantwit Major - Tuesday, October 15; and Gathering Place, St Athan - Tuesday, October 22.
A six-week public consultation begins in November.