Decision to be made on preferred location of a new community near Exeter

A report on proposals for a second new community to the east of Exeter will be considered by East Devon District Council’s (EDDC) Strategic Planning Committee on Tuesday, 5 December.

Members of the committee will discuss residents’ feedback from the Draft Local Plan consultation, that closed in January 2023, and consultants’ continued assessments of the suitability of the three options.

Nearly 65 per cent of respondents to the consultation were not in favour of a second new community. However, the Council has previously agreed that a new community is necessary to meet housing targets imposed by the UK Government. The council seeks to balance these targets with addressing residents’ concerns, meeting the authority’s environmental protection goals, alongside supporting economic and employment growth in the area.

Due to factors including less impact on highways infrastructure and a greater potential to deliver net zero carbon developments, consultants suggest that option one would be preferable. Option one consists of land between the A3052 and A30 to the west of Farringdon village and east of Westpoint. Option three, which was initially forecast to have a similar impact, would be on land to the south and east of Winslade Park, south of Oil Mill Lane and north/east of Clyst St George. A further option (option 2) has also been assessed but is notably less acceptable.

The preferred option for the new community will be developed further and the next stage of consultation is planned to take place towards the end of 2024.

Councillor Olly Davey, EDDC’s Portfolio Holder for Strategic Planning, said:

“While we recognise the lack of enthusiasm among East Devon residents for another new community, it would be irresponsible of the committee not to explore this option to meet government housing targets, which otherwise will put further pressure on our existing settlements, whose infrastructure is already overstretched.  A new town could offer the opportunity to design a sustainable and largely self-contained community with its own facilities.”

For more information about the proposals for future development across the district up to 2040, visit EDDC’s Local Plan webpages.

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