Central Bedfordshire Pre-submission Local Plan (January 2018)

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Foreword

There's more than one reason why we believe Central Bedfordshire is a great place to live and work.

Attractive market towns and beautiful villages surrounded by stunning countryside, all boosted by a prime location, great transport links and a high performing economy are some of the yardsticks we use as measurement.

All these attributes mean we have high growth pressures and this in turn puts into sharp focus the delivery of new homes and jobs. We need more of both.

We particularly need more homes; homes for renters, first-time buyers, for young people, for older people, and homes for families. We need to plan positively and carefully for this and our Local Plan does just that.

We've created our Local Plan with your input from thousands of residents who engaged with us through our various consultation and engagement events and that has provided useful insights into what is needed where you live.

You will remember that we originally consulted on our draft Local Plan in the summer, which proposed a range of homes and a range of locations to deliver this – more than we thought we might need.

So, we've been reflecting on all of your feedback and we've done some more evidence work and analysis to create our Local Plan. This is what we will now be taking forward.

We are now planning for up to 20,000 homes and 24,000 jobs over the next 20 years, which is a smaller number than we'd originally proposed.

The growth will be delivered in four strategic locations, as well as some small to medium growth in existing towns and villages where services can support it.

Our plan has always been about more than planning just for homes and jobs. It's about creating communities. This means planning for new and improved roads and transport infrastructure; and new community facilities and services, such as schools, nurseries, shops, sport and leisure facilities.

And it's important to remember that the Local Plan will serve us for 20 years, so development won't happen overnight. It's a long-term vision to ensure that it happens in a way that brings maximum benefit to the area and the people who live here.

Above all else, it's a plan that is deliverable, sustainable and will ensure Central Bedfordshire continues to be a great place to live and work.

Cllr Nigel Young

Executive Member for Regeneration and Business

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