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Telford will need 17,000 new homes by 2031

By Deborah Hardiman | Telford | Property | Published:

More than 17,000 homes need to be built in Telford by 2031, according to its updated planning blueprint for the future.

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Telford & Wrekin has also not ruled out the need for the borough to provide “overspill” housing for neighbouring authorities in new changes to its local plan.

The council has created a revised draft of its local plan. It says the number of properties required has increased from the 15,555 originally stated to 17,280 within the next 14 years. The projected population figure will be 202,000, revised from 198,000.

The authority was ordered to review several aspects of its future plan for the town after a government inspector warned the selection of housing sites was “flawed”.

Among the main changes are an undertaking that the council will hold talks with the four neighbouring Black Country councils and Birmingham regarding housing land if the need arises.

The new draft document states: “Based on current evidence available at this time, the potential contribution of in-migration arising from the Local Plan’s housing requirement towards meeting the needs of the Greater Birmingham and Black Country Housing Market Area (GBBC HMA) has not been quantified.

“The council will continue to consider this matter in the light of emerging evidence. It does not at present rule out the potential apportionment of some of the local plan’s housing requirement towards meeting the needs of the GBBC HMA. Discussions will therefore continue to progress on this basis.”

It also states that one area, Priorslee is the preferred option for “sustainable urban extension” for homes, open space, jobs and facilities. Muxton was listed alongside Priorslee in the previous draft plan for new housing.

Other changes include a commitment to develop retail and leisure at Southwater and support of efforts to develop Harper Adams University near Newport.

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Councillor Richard Overton, Telford & Wrekin’s cabinet member for housing and enforcement, said: “The local plan is now into the final stages before it is adopted. Adoption of a new up to date local plan will help resist speculative development proposals in the future and will allow us greater control over the planning process in the borough.”

In April the authority was told by an inspector to review several aspects of its local plan who warned that its selection of sites for housing is “flawed” and that a clear audit trail of how it arrived at is decisions over site selection should be shown. While critics in the building industry accused it of blocking competition and squeezing the amount of land available to small builders, and of sticking its head in the sand by putting off allocating housing sites.

The council said the new consultation was not covering the whole plan and the inspector will only be considering comments on the proposed changes.

All comments on the main changes should be submitted by 5pm on 22 September. Further details can be found on the council’s website.

Deborah Hardiman

By Deborah Hardiman
@Deborahh_Star

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based out of the head office in Ketley. Covering the Telford area.

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