REDDITCH may have to find space for a possible overspill of Birmingham residents – in addition to nearly 3,000 homes within the borough’s boundaries.
This is in addition to the 3,400 homes earmarked for land within Bromsgrove district at Foxlydiate and Brockhill.
That’s the verdict of planning inspector Michael Hetherington following a planning inquiry into the borough’s local plan (BORLP4).
The plan gives a framework for future development in Redditch over the next 15 years and came before the council’s executive committee on Tuesday evening (July 12).
In his report Mr Hetherington warns that under a duty to co-operate with neighbouring authorities Redditch may, if called upon, be required to help meet Birmingham’s housing needs.
Other neighbouring authorities, including Bromsgrove, are under a similar obligation to assist if necessary.
Ruth Bamford, Redditch’s head of planning and regeneration said: “At this time the council is aware of the Birmingham overspill issue and we have said, when we know the total of that we will respond accordingly should the need arise. However we do not know what overspill there might be – if any.”
The inspector endorsed plans for approximately 3,400 new homes in Bromsgrove district from Webheath up to Bentley, with approximately 2,800 going in at Foxlydiate and 600 at Brockhill with associated facilities and services.
In addition he identified land for up to 2,873 dwellings within Redditch, including up to 1,025 at Brockhill East, 600 in Webheath and 205 along the route of the A435 behind Winyates Green, plus 145 by the Alexandra Hospital.
In line with local authorities across the country the borough has also been asked to identify a possible site for Travellers.
Coun Brandon Clayton (Con, ABank, Feckenham) said: “I cannot agree with the inspector on these modifications. The reason of the new town was that the houses were close to employment sites and with this you have the houses on one side of town and employment sites on the other – it’s going to cause huge problems.”
Coun Bill Hartnett, leader of the council, said: “The plan is evidence based and we have followed the evidence and it’s been through how many years and public inquiries.”
The plan will go before full council and then out for public consultation from July 27 to September 21.