Communities in Lawrence Weston and Old Market get greater say in planning
Communities in the Lawrence Weston and Old Market areas of the city are to have a greater influence over planning decisions in their neighbourhoods.
Bristol City Council has designated the two districts as Neighbourhood Planning Areas, joining Lockleaze and Redcliffe Way which were part of the Government’s pilot scheme.
Community groups in these areas are now invited to apply to be designated as a Neighbourhood Planning Forum for each area.
Once approved by the council, the designated forums will be able to work on the production of a Neighbourhood Development Plan for their area.
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This will allow communities to set out where they want new homes, shops and offices to be built, and influence developers on what those new buildings should look like and what infrastructure should be provided.
The right of local communities to have a greater say in neighbourhood planning was introduced as part of the Localism Act 2011.
One of the aims of the Old Market group is to have a say on changes to the road system to ensure it better serves the sustainability of the area.
It is hoped that this may also release potential development sites such as the area around Lawrence Hill roundabout and the Clarence Road and Bond Street roundabout. Another key aim is to reconnect Old Market with Castle Park.
The aims of Lawrence Weston group include providing an open, accountable, community-led organisation to lead the regeneration of the area, and encouraging and supporting partnership working between the community, businesses, service providers and voluntary groups.
Councillor Guy Poultney, cabinet member for homes, planning and regeneration, said: “Thriving communities are vital to the success of the city and giving residents, businesses and other stakeholders a greater influence in the design of their neighbourhoods is crucial to strengthening their vitality.
“Neighbourhood Partnerships already give all our communities real influence on many of the services in their neighbourhood such as street cleaning, parks maintenance and street lighting. The introduction of neighbourhood planning gives Bristol’s residents the opportunity to plan the future of their area.”
Councillor Gus Hoyt, cabinet member for the environment, communities and equalities, said: " I have been involved with groups in Old Market who passionately wish to bring their community up to the high standard they deserve. There are many dedicated and visionary members of their forum and I wish them all the very best."
An organisation which wants to apply for a Neighbourhood Planning Area must have at least 21 people who live in or work in the neighbourhood area concerned, or are the elected council members for the area.
For more information, visit Bristol City Council’s website at www.bristol.gov.uk/page/planning-and-building-regulations/neighbourhood-planning-bristol