These are issues that your local councillors, town and parish councils and residents groups have asked me to represent to government for you.
There are significant weaknesses in legislation which, unbelievably, allow Councils to bypass what most people and professionals would regard and sound planning and conduct.
For example, before deciding you want to build 14,000 new homes in an area, people would reasonably expect that Councils would;
- Plan for the roads to be upgraded before development
- Plan and start development of the new schools, school expansion, medical facilities, and other services that will be needed
- Incorporate the expected new travel movements into a regional public transport plan to help people easily get from home to school work and services.
- Coordinate with utility companies to ensure that provision is available first, and connection disruption is minimised.
- Have the power to bill developers of the new buildings for a reasonable proportion of the costs of developing the increased infrastructure required.
But there is no such requirement so, Councils don’t do it. This must be changed to facilitate holistic and joined up development of our town and country.
This is what you have said to me. We must change legislation to;
- Require councils to put in place as part of its Local Plan, a costed Infrastructure Development Plan that sets out the upgrades to infrastructure and roads required, the location of the new schools, school places and services required to reasonably accommodate development expected in their Local Plans.
- Change the arbitrary formula for the number of houses to incorporate our climate change emergency, loss of biodiversity, space and well being issues, protect our greenbelt.
- Fund and require local councils, through regional government such as the Local Enterprise Partnership, to create integrated, low cost, green, accessible, and highly useable regional transport networks to enable residents to move quickly and easily around the region for work, education and leisure. This will also, amongst other things, reduce car use, congestion, pollution, and the requirement for car parks, and improve our communities and connectivity and boost our businesses and high streets.
- Improve investment in the north of England to take the migratory pressures off the South East; we are one nation and should seek prosperity and a good quality of life for all.
- Ban parking on pavements and grass verges
There are increasing concerns about damage to our areas, poorly maintained access and areas, a lack of planning and building control, inappropriate parking getting out of control etc..
So, our suggested solution is that;
Government should create minimum standards and penalties for local authorities who do not enforce the rules and regulations or do so ineffectively, and allow residents to invoke these standards.
Please tell me if there are other areas and issue of pressing concern.
Ascot, Sunninghill, Binfield, Warfield, Winkfield, Colnbrook, Poyle, Datchet, Horton, Old Windsor, Windsor, Wraysbury, Dedworth