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Capital Times Issue 144 Content on Cardiff Local Development Plan PDF Print E-mail

The following is a copy of a letter that local resident and DCA Committee member Stewart Burgess has sent to the Capital Times about their recent article on the Local Development Plan

Sir,
I write to complain at the utterly misleading article about the Council's preferred strategy for the Cardiff Local Development Plan included in the current edition of the Capital Times.
 
The article states that "the preferred strategy report is not the full draft of the plan, but sets out the key issues and the Council's broad proposals for addressing these", goes on to indicate that a public consultation is underway, all of which is correct.
 
However, in its section headed New Homes, the article clearly states that in order to meet the future needs for jobs and homes, it will be necessary to deliver 40,000 new jobs and 45,000 new homes and that to do this it will be necessary to deliver "approximately 18,000 new homes on greenfield land including the following strategic sites". It then goes on to list 5 such sites. The trouble with this it that it clearly implies to anyone reading the article that the Council has determined that there is a need for this number of new homes and that the five listed strategic sites will be included in the LDP when it is published.
 
In fact key questions contained within the consultation address opinion on whether any of these numbers are correct and whether any of these strategic sites are considered to be desirable or practical.
 
The problem posed by the article is that many people, once they have read it, will wrongly conclude that they are being consulted on what they perceive to be a 'fait accompli' and they will see no point in completing the consultation you have laid out.
 
A more minor problem contained within the article is that it invites people to comment online by registering at www.cardiff.gov.uk/localdevelopmenplan and using the online response form. This web address merely takes anyone using it to the Cardiff Council website's home page. To actually find the consultation questions needs several more steps to be undertaken. Again the instruction is misleading.
 
Consequently I would ask that you withdraw the published article, extend an apology to the residents of Cardiff by some means for publishing misleading information, rewrite the article appropriately, publish the revision and extend the closing date for the consultation to accommodate this process. Without undertaking all this, the results of your consultation are likely to be skewed and consequently of little reliability.
 
Stewart Burgess
BSc MBA CEng CEnv FICE FCIHT MCMI
 
The link Stewart quotes in his letter should be www.cardiff.gov.uk/localdevelopmentplan
Please use our contact form to let us know your views 

Stewart received the following reply from James Clemence of Cardiff County Council

 

Dear Mr Burgess,

 

Thank you for your e-mail and interest in Cardiff’s LDP.

 

However, I do not share your views expressed about the Capital Times article. This article makes it very clear that the views of the public are sought and the Response Form specifically seeks opinions on a wide range of issues. Specifically, the article states, “This consultation is one of the most important stages in the LDP preparation and offers everyone with an interest in the future development of Cardiff an opportunity to influence the plan before the Council finalises its proposals”.

 

I therefore do not consider it appropriate to follow the course of action you propose.

 

For your information, the consultation process is drawing in high numbers of people, high media attention and generating significant interest which we are anticipating will produce extensive feedback by the final deadline of 14th December.

 

Kind regards,

James Clemence 

Operational Manager- Planning Policy 
Strategic Planning 
029 20 873185


Last Updated on Wednesday, 21 November 2012 21:28
 
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