Following a full council meeting on Tuesday, October 17, Croxley residents are being asked to share their views about the revised, final version of the Local Plan.
The newest plan will see nearly 5,000 dwellings built in Three Rivers over the next 18 years, with hundreds planned around Croxley.
According to Three Rivers District Council (TRDC): “The preferred Lower Growth Housing Option will mean the homes will be built on previously developed land (brownfield sites) and green belt sites categorised as lower to moderate harm, while others will be built using granted planning permissions.”
Proposed areas for development include land surrounding Croxley Station, Cinnamond House, and garages off Owens Way and Grove Crescent.
Councillor Stephen Giles-Medhurst, Deputy Leader of TRDC and lead member for the Local Plan, said: “As a council, we have decided to take a drastically different approach to housing growth as we believe the government’s high target will result in further unnecessary loss of our precious green belt land, which is loved by residents and is important for our wildlife.
“I must be honest – our plan is a risk. As it is below the government housing figure, it might reject it, ask us to start again, or impose the higher figure and sites not in this consultation on Three Rivers.
“But we must push for what is right for this district. We are committed to prioritising development on brownfield sites and protecting as much green belt land as possible.
“I hope that a majority of residents will agree on our new Lower Housing Growth approach, so make sure you have your say.”
As reported in last month’s CROXLEYnews, councillor Chris Mitchell assured residents that leaflets sent out by the Liberal Democrats suggesting the “dilapidated” British Red Cross community hall building in Croxley should be demolished was, in fact, incorrect, and the building is still open and running.
However, the British Red Cross hall does feature in the latest Local Plan, where five to six homes are being considered.
Cllr Mitchell spoke to CROXLEYnews and said that both he and councillor Narinder Sian support the overall approach and the Low Growth and Green Belt Restraint strategy. However, they abstained in the final vote because the Liberal Democrats refused to remove the British Red Cross hall from the list of sites to be included.
Cllr Mitchell submitted an amendment to remove the hall from the plan, which was supported by the other political parties and the residents’ associations, but was ultimately rejected by the Liberal Democrats.
Cllr Mitchell said: “I support the overall approach, identifying our local housing need and protecting most of our precious green belt. We need more homes, with all the supporting infrastructure. But that must include protecting community facilities, like the British Red Cross Hall in Croxley Green.”
Cllr Sian said: “There is much in the local plan we can support. We do need to build more homes. People need somewhere to live and our young people need affordable housing.”
He pointed out that many affordable rented dwellings are being built in Croxley as part of the Killingdown Farm development, and more have been proposed at Grove Court. The station site and the Cinnamond site could both provide many more.
Barry Grant, from the Joint Residents’ Association, told CROXLEYnews: “The council has gone for a figure which is half the target, but until the government changes its policies, it’s not likely it will go through.
“Fifty per cent of the plan is housing. No one wants to see green belt land built on but the plan is only 1,000 homes on this land.
“Realistically, there is a need for housing, and this is a compromise. We urge people to respond to the approach from the council.”
To find out more, head to haveyoursay.threerivers.gov.uk/local-plan and threeriversjointras.wixsite.com/website