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Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillors Gervase Duffield, Debby Hallett, Chris McCarthy and Robert Sharp.
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Local Plan 2031 Part 2 - Inspector's initial post hearing letter
Cabinet, at its special meeting on 16 November 2018, will consider the report of the head of planning following receipt of the inspector’s initial post hearing letter relating to the proposed allocation of Dalton Barracks.
The report of the head of planning, which Cabinet will consider, will be circulated to all councillors.
Cabinet’s recommendations will be circulated to councillors on Friday 16 November 2018.
Council considered Cabinet’s recommendation, made at its special meeting on 16 November 2018, for a proposed response to the PlanningInspector’s initial post hearing letter relating to the proposed allocation of Dalton Barracks.
In moving Cabinet’s recommendation Councillor Roger Cox, Leader of the council and Cabinet member for planning, reminded councillors that Council had submitted the Local Plan Part 2 (LPP2) for examination in February 2018 and that the Examination in Public took place in July and September this year. Further work was done during the examination by supplying topic papers to the Inspector at his request, which amplified the council’s approach and modifications to various topics which are in the examination library and are public documents.
The Inspector’s letter, dated 30 October 2018, was published in the councillor newsletter ‘In focus’. He stressed that the item before Council was to consider the Inspector’s request for an amended approach to the Dalton Barracks site and was not a re-examination of LPP2. However, it is quite possible that further modifications will be needed for other parts of the plan later in the process.
The report to Cabinet set out three options:
· Continue with the whole scheme.
· Modify the scheme to meet the plan period.
· Discard the site altogether.
In order to satisfy the Inspector’s request for a modified approach to the Dalton Barracks site, Cabinet recommended Option 2 as the preferred option which would reduce the size of the development, retain the MOD playing fields and Starveal Farm within the green belt, and provide a site capable of taking 1,200 homes within the timescale.11 topic papers underpin the recommendation with two pieces of additional work required on transport and air quality, which have been commissioned.
Councillor Cox advised that the council has submitted a ‘Bid’ to join the Garden Communities Programme which, if successful, would help to further enhance the development. Details will be published shortly.
The majority of councillors supported the recommendation. Some expressed the view that, whilst the council still has no sound LLP2 with further modifications likely, of the three options available, and given the time pressure the council is under, Option 2 provides the most sensible way forward.
A number of councillors noted that the Inspector had made a number of requested modifications following questions raised regarding the soundness of LLP2 in relation to the inadequate transport infrastructure to support housing at Dalton Barracks and Abingdon Airfield, deletion of the bus road through Sunningwell and not removing Shippon village from the green belt. The number of homes required in South-East Vale had been reduced with Oxford’s unmet need treated as a working assumption.
In response to questions Councillor Cox confirmed that, although in the hands of the Inspector in terms of timescale, he has a high degree of optimism that following the adoption of Local Plan Part 1 in 2016 the council can achieve a date of 31 December 2018 for modifications and adoption of LLP2 by 31 March 2019. He acknowledged that the Oxfordshire ... view the full minutes text for item 42.