States debate could protect green fields

Thu 18 Jul 2019

A proposal that could help protect greenfield sites in the Vale from development and give parishioners more say in what gets built where is being debated by States members today.

Progress on the Deputy Jennifer Merrett requete – effectively a petition to the States – will be watched by all the parishes as it seeks to put more political control back into the planning process.

As the Guernsey Press and other media have reported there has been a lot of concern in the Vale, and elsewhere, about Development and Planning Authority staff preparing planning frameworks which tell developers what is likely to be approved on any particular parcel of land.

Since one was prepared for the former English and Guernsey Arms site off the Bridge, owner pub chain Liberation Group announced this week that it is for sale for £800,000 for housing.

Concerns that piecemeal building is being allowed without considering the wider impact on surrounding areas surfaced over the "triangle field" opposite Alliance. A petition, also supported by Vale deputy Laurie Queripel, seeks to stop revised plans for six homes there.

In her detailed requete to the States, Deputy Merrett (right) is asking for widespread changes to the Island Development Plan. These include:

- Giving greater consideration to the cumulative impact of separate developments, and the density of development in certain areas
- Reconsidering the approach to prioritisation of development on Housing Allocation Areas, in a manner that affords greater protection to greenfield sites designated as Housing Allocation Areas
- Affording protection to areas of open land, not currently classified as Important Open Land, within the main centres, main centre outer areas and local centres, and 
- To report back to the States with a policy letter on the regeneration of the Bridge area.



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