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HOUSING: Council soon to disclose 330 sites under threat of development

Thursday 3rd October 2019

THE long-awaited "call for sites" insituted by Maidstone Borough Council will shortly be made public.

Councillors whose wards are affected by possible developments will be informed tomorrow of which parcels of land could be built on.

The call for sites was carried out between February and May by MBC to locate sites to accommodate up to 10,500 extra new homes on top of the 17,600 agreed in the 2017 Local Plan.

Today the council said due to publish the submissions from its’ recent ‘Call for Sites’ exercise on November 4, as revealed by Daily Downs Mail recently.

Senior council officials have been worried about early disclosure of potential sites since Downs Mail last year published a list of of council-owned open spaces and public parks which were under threat of development.

It was hoped, said one MBC insider, that by staggering disclosure, the chances of unauthorised leaks would be reduced.

An MBC statement said: "The ‘Call for Sites’ is an open request for information about land which landowners consider may have potential for meeting future needs in the borough, including new housing, business development, retail and leisure.

"It is a key piece of evidence in the preparation of Maidstone Council’s Local Plan Review (LPR).

"As part of the ‘Call for Sites’ exercise, Maidstone Borough Council received over 330 submissions which have provided the authority with a list to select preferred sites to meet future development needs.

"The Council is intending to publish details of all the submissions on the MBC website on 4 November: prior to any decisions relating to these sites being made.

"The ‘Call for Sites’ details will be used alongside other evidence and assessments to inform the Local Plan Review. (The next public consultation on the LPR is scheduled for February 2020 and will outline preferred approaches to managing future development and associated requirements.)"