Understanding environmental impact is crucial to sustainability and community quality of life.

Torfaen Local Development Plan - submission

TFoE made a collective submission to Torfaen County Borough Council's Local Development Plan (LDP) Consultation in June 2011. The LDP outlines the Council's plans for commercial, leisure and residential development for the following ten years.

Summary

The overarching theme of the submission is the failure of the LDP to address sustainability meaningfully. Torfaen suffers from a north/south divide with little employment provision within the northern part of the Borough. The LDP proposes nothing to improve employment opportunities in the Borough as a whole, and nothing for the north where jobs are needed. Consequently, Torfaen residents are forced to travel outside the Borough for employment. The LDP contains proposals for more than 6,000 new dwellings in contrast to the Welsh Assembly Government plan for 5,000 new houses.

‘The LDP contains proposals for more than 6,000 new dwellings in contrast to the Welsh Assembly Government plan for 5,000 new houses.’

Without simultaneous stimulation of economic growth and job creation, the proposals for new dwellings are simply developer lead planning that provides no incentive for people to move into the Borough, or remain. And if they do move into the Borough, they will be forced to travel elsewhere to work. Furthermore, the sites selected for residential development are predominantly greenfield sites while brownfield sites with established highways infrastructure have been ignored. With highways budgets being cut the roads serving the greenfield sites are unlikely to be improved to an adequate standard. This is supported by proposals to extend Cwmbrân town centre which ignore the need to improve roads in and around the town centre to accommodate the increased levels of traffic required to make the development commercially viable.

‘… the proposals contained in the LDP do not meet sustainability criteria …’

In summary, the proposals contained in the LDP do not meet sustainability criteria and offer little in the way of improvement in local employment opportunities and quality of life for the residents of the Borough.

The full text of the submission is available.

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