Land News

New call for review of Green Belt

BBC News, 3rd August, 2004

A review of green belt is needed to help make way for 70,000 new homes in Beds, Bucks and Northants according to a government report.

The extra housing, to be built by 2021, comes on top of the 100,000 homes already earmarked to be completed over the next 20 years.

The recommendations are contained in a new report by the Milton Keynes and South Midlands Sub-Regional Panel.

The report follows a public examination of plans earlier this year.

The report says that in Milton Keynes and the surrounding area, including parts of Northamptonshire and Bedfordshire, the "supply of homes has been failing to keep pace with the demand".

To meet this need the report says: "Sufficient land will need to be excluded from the green belt to accommodate significant numbers of new homes and jobs in the period to 2021."

It adds: "Expansion in South Bedfordshire beyond the developed areas of Luton and Dunstable and Leighton-Linslade is not possible without revision of the green belt."

Earlier this year BBC News Online reported that protest group STOP, Stop the Over- development Plans for Northamptonshire, had handed over a 3,500-signature petition against the plans for the new homes.

STOP is also campaigning against the creation of a "linear city" joining up Corby, Kettering, Wellingborough and Northampton, and the threat posed by the expansion of Northampton on historic nearby villages.

The government has said it is important to revitalise existing communities.

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