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Tuesday, 30 September 2014

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Public set to have say on South Lakes housing masterplan

PLANS outlining where hundreds of homes could be built across the South Lakes look set to be opened up to public consultation.

But the Land Allocation Document, due to be discussed by the Lake District National Park Authority on Wednesday, only goes half way to addressing the housing shortage in the area.

The document, drawn up following a previous public consultation to identify preferred sites for development, allocates land for around 289 homes across the South Lakes.

But the LDNPA has identified the need to build 512 homes in the South Lakes by 2025 – and 900 across the whole national park.

The document singles out sites for housing, employment and mixed use, with the aim of making it easier for developers to identify land that meets their needs.

It includes 2.5 hectares of land – enough for around 75 homes – in Ambleside and the same amount again across Windermere and Bowness.

But a spokesman for the LDNPA said the issue of how best to address the remaining housing shortage is expected to be discussed on Wednesday.

He added: “It would be part of the consultation. That is the time when people can express these kinds of views.

“We have identified these potential sites and if members approve the document it would go out to the public to see what they think about it.”

Central and South Lakes make up the majority of the identified housing and employment need across the national park and look set to receive nearly two thirds of the total development.

One single development in Backbarrow will provide more than double the necessary employment use for the South Distinctive Area – including Coniston, Hawkshead and Broughton.

The site, north of the Barkers Timber Yard off the A590, spans 2.82 hectares.

The Land Allocations Document states: “The location of this site is such that it will contribute to meeting the needs and demands of this Distinctive Area and some of the needs and demands of the Central and South East Distinctive Area.”

If the document is approved at the authority meeting next week, the plans would be subject to an eight-week public consultation, as required by law.

Residents would then have the chance to have their say over the proposals and influence the final version of the document.

Following the public consultation a revised document would then be submitted to the Planning Inspector for approval, as is currently the case for South Lakeland District Council’s Land Allocations Document.

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