Area Committee gives steer as work on finalising CaSPlan continues
Following the latest round of consultation on the Main Issues Report for the Caithness and Sutherland Local Development Plan, yesterday (Tuesday 26 May) members of the Area Committee were presented with a summary of matters raised by members of the public and gave their feedback on a number of issues.
The CaSPlan Main Issues Report (MIR) is a discussion document that sets out initial ideas for what the plan needs to achieve for people and places in the area and the Council’s initial preferences for where new development might be located.
The consultation period ended on 6 February 2015 and Councillors were advised that a total of 258 comments were submitted during the consultation, including comments from a number of Community Councils and community organisations. A series of drop in sessions and evening workshops were held across the plan area at Brora, Dornoch, Halkirk, Lairg, Lochinver, Thurso, Tongue and Wick which were attended by 284 people.
Some examples of feedback included:
• Suggestions to improve the Strategy Map;
• General support for the boundary amendments to the Special Landscape Areas (SLAs);
• A high proportion of the overall number of comments received related to site options in Thurso west, particularly at Pennyland;
• General agreement with the proposed Outcomes for the Plan;
• Green network assets and enhancements should also be mapped;
• The desire to see outcomes actually delivered;
• To ensure clarity on requirements for Developer Contributions.
The CaSPlan team have worked through all the comments received during the consultation to examine the relevant issues raised and after discussing Officers’ initial consideration, members yesterday agreed an interim position on the plan issues. This will now be used to steer preparation of the plan forward to the next formal stage of the process. This includes taking into account the public calls for additional settlements to be identified as Growing Settlements in the Plan, so Invershin, Rosehall and Thrumster will now also be included, along with Melness which was recommended by Officers.
The Council is continuing to work through the details of all the matters raised in the responses so the Proposed Plan – which will when approved represent the Council’s settled view as to what the final content of the plan should be – will be presented to the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Committee on 19 August taking into account results of ongoing environmental and other assessments. Following approval by the Committee, there will be a further period of consultation.
To keep in touch with progress in the preparation of CaSPlan, see www.highland.gov.uk/casplan