Welwyn Hatfield's development blueprint submitted

PUBLISHED: 08:50 20 May 2017

The Welwyn Hatfield draft Local Plan consists of several large boxes of documents, pictured by Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council.

The Welwyn Hatfield draft Local Plan consists of several large boxes of documents, pictured by Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council.

Archant

Council planning chiefs have formally submitted their controversial blueprint for the long term future of Welwyn Hatfield, for government approval.

The borough council has sent several large boxes, containing in total thousands of documents, to the Department for Communities and Local Government for consideration by the Secretary of state Sajid Javid.

The boxes contain the authority’s draft local Plan, including proposals for 12,000 homes to be built by 2032.

Much of the plan has aroused passionate opposition, in particular plans for major new settlements at Hatfield Garden Village, Symondshyde, and immediately east of WGC, and the process has so far cost the council well over £4Mn.

Provided it is accepted by Mr Javid, it is likely to be further scrutinised at a public inquiry this summer, and could be formally adopted early this year.

All the documents, including maps and responses to the official consultation last October, can be seen on the council’s website.

The authority has appointed Louise St John Howe as programme officer for the likely public enquiry.

Members of the public can contact her on 07789 486419 or at louise@poservices.co.uk

Meanwhile, council planners have launched a new consultation on proposed new financial contributions by developers for community infrastructure.

The council proposes that developments of 11 or more homes should be charged £50, £100, or £230 per square metre, depending on which part of the borough they occupy.

Smaller residential developments will be charged a flat £230 per square metre, but commercial projects will be charged just £20 per square metres. or £85 for supermarkets or retail warehouses.

Councillor Mandy Perkins, cabinet planning chief, said: “How development will be supported by infrastructure is one of the most common questions I hear from residents.

“The Community Infrastructure Levy is another tool to help us fund improvements and it’s vital we get this right. Alongside the borough’s Local Plan, It will play a big part in shaping the future of our borough and the transport networks, services and facilities we all rely on.”

Comments can be made online at www.welhat.gov.uk/CILup to Monday, June 26.

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