8th May 2007
RESIDENTS of the Cairngorms National Park are being asked to help shape the future development of the Park.
The Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA) approved the publication and deposit of the Cairngorms National Park Local Plan at a planning committee meeting on Friday (May 4th). This will give the public the opportunity to respond to the policies and proposals set out in the document.
The Local Plan is a statutory plan relating to new developments or re-developments of land. Through extensive consultation with the public, local authorities and other partners the Cairngorms National Park Local Plan identifies future development needs in the Park over the next five years.
The main development in the Park will be housing and it is estimated that 1030 new homes are needed during that period.
The Local Plan aims to increase the supply of housing for all sectors, but particularly to provide a more balanced and wider range of affordable homes to rent and buy.
In order to improve the supply of affordable housing the Local Plan is proposing that future developments should include a 50 per cent range of affordable housing.
The document is expected to go on deposit in July to give the public the opportunity to respond.
David Green, Cairngorms National Park Convener, said: “The Local Plan is an important document for the National Park. It will help to protect the Park from harmful developments that could threaten its special qualities and will ensure that the right land is identified for any future developments.
“Crucially it will also address the problem of the lack of housing in the Park – an issue which time and time again is cited as one of the main difficulties facing people living and working here.
“As well as providing more housing it will also ensure more people living in the Park will be able to access and afford it.
“The CNPA drew up the Local Plan following consultation with the public and our partners.
“It is now essential the public re-engages with us to let us know if the Local Plan has struck the right balance and that it is delivering what is needed. The only way people can do this is by responding to the document.”
Workshops are due to be held in June (with dates yet to be announced) to explain to the public how the deposit stage will work and how they can respond during that period.
The document is to be formally ratified by the CNPA board in June, before it goes out on deposit for three months from July to September. Following the deposit period the Local Plan will undergo any necessary amendments.
The Local Plan is not thought to be formally adopted for at least another year. However once it has been, it will replace the local plans currently in existence for the four local authority areas covering the Park: Aberdeenshire; Angus; Highland and Moray.