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Agenda item

Otterpool Park: A Garden Town of the Future - Proposal

Report C/16/08 went to Cabinet on 8 June 2016. It set out the case for a potential new garden settlement in the district and sought Cabinet approval to submit an expression of interest for Otterpool Park, in response to the Government’s prospectus for “Locally Led Garden Villages, Towns and Cities”.

 

The draft expression of interest, which was included as a confidential appendix to the report, set out the unique and well-connected location for a potential garden settlement of up to 12,000 new homes near Junction 11 of the M20. It included a potential vision and key guiding principles that provide a foundation for working with land owners and the wider community to plan and deliver a new garden community.

 

The expression of interest is without prejudice to any future decisions the Council might take in its capacity as local planning authority.

 

It was resolved:

 

That the Cabinet agrees that a proposed new garden town at Otterpool Park has the potential to be a unique opportunity to deliver the strategic objectives of the Corporate Plan relating to boosting the local economy, increasing job opportunities and providing more homes.

 

That the detailed expression of interest, attached to this report, be agreed as the Council’s formal submission to the Department of Communities and Local Government’s prospectus for “Locally Led Garden Villages, Towns and Cities”, subject to any changes considered necessary by the Director of Strategic Development in consultation with the Leader of the Council.

 

That a further report be considered by Cabinet to consider the outcome of the expression of interest to Government.

Minutes:

Report C/16/08 went to Cabinet on 8 June 2016. It set out the case for a

potential new garden settlement in the district and sought Cabinet approval

to submit an expression of interest for Otterpool Park, in response to the

Government’s prospectus for “Locally Led Garden Villages, Towns and

Cities”.

 

The draft expression of interest, which was included as a confidential

appendix to the report, set out the unique and well-connected location for a

potential garden settlement of up to 12,000 new homes near Junction 11

of the M20. It included a potential vision and key guiding principles that

provide a foundation for working with land owners and the wider

community to plan and deliver a new garden community.

 

The expression of interest is without prejudice to any future decisions the

Council might take in its capacity as local planning authority.

It was resolved:

 

1.         That the Cabinet agrees that a proposed new garden town at Otterpool

Park has the potential to be a unique opportunity to deliver the strategic

objectives of the Corporate Plan relating to boosting the local economy,

increasing job opportunities and providing more homes.

2.         That the detailed expression of interest, attached to this report, be

agreed as the Council’s formal submission to the Department of

Communities and Local Government’s prospectus for “Locally Led

Garden Villages, Towns and Cities”, subject to any changes considered necessary by the Director of Strategic Development in consultation with the Leader of the Council.

3.         That a further report be considered by Cabinet to consider the outcome

of the expression of interest to Government.

 

David Monk, Leader of the Council introduced the report informing members that the council is now waiting for a response from government on the decision in respect of the expression of interest.

 

Dr Susan Priest, Corporate Director – Strategic Operations gave a presentation on Otterpool Park. A copy of the presentation is attached to these minutes.

 

Dr Priest informed members that this was a major transformational project shaping the district for the next 30+ years, with significant potential for quality, innovative design, local employment opportunities and accessible open space.

 

As a garden settlement it will allow officers to plan effectively from the start to create a distinct community which will include ultra-fast IT and other significant community facilities. There is a need for growth in the district and this will provide that over a number of years.

 

The area of the site is ideal for connecting to London, the Channel Tunnel and Port of Dover and has easy access to the coast and countryside.

 

There are a number of guiding principles to the park, along with information in respect of key elements and opportunities, all shown in the attached presentation papers. There is a strong need for community engagement to involve existing and potential new residents.

 

Members paid particular attention to the following:

 

·         Local involvement – officers will work with parish/town councils as the scheme is progressed. The best new developments are done with local consent.

·         Expression of interest – this is with civil servants who are now reviewing it, to be followed by a recommendation to the Minister who in turn will notify the council of its decision.

·         Timescales – although the timescale is for up to 30 years it enables the council to plan and fulfil its future housing needs for the district.

·         Outline Plan for development – a detailed plan will not be available for some time but officers will work with the local community and take into account ancient woodland, green space and heritage assets.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Supporting documents: