City chiefs check lay of the land for planning blueprint

DEVELOPERS, entrepreneurs and landowners are being urged to come forward to shape a planning blueprint in York spanning the next two decades which is being dramatically revised.

York Council is drawing up a list of key sites throughout the city which will help form the foundations of the new development plan after an initial strategy had to be shelved amid serious concerns over its viability.

Letters are being sent out this week asking organisations to submit details of sites so that the council can consider whether they should be taken forward.

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The council has stressed the move is only the start of the process as sites will need to be assessed for their suitability. The most appropriate locations will then be the focus of further public consultations.

The Yorkshire Post revealed on Monday that the long-term planning vision will not be in place for more than two years after the initial blueprints were withdrawn. Detailed plans for the Local Development Framework’s (LDF) core strategy were withdrawn in May by the council just three months after submitting them to the Government for final approval.

A total of £1.1m of taxpayers’ money has been spent developing the documents since March 2006, but the council decided not to pursue the plan after Government planning inspector David Vickery raised concerns over its “potential soundness”.

The council is adamant that data collated to develop the city’s LDF will be used as a foundation for a new Local Plan, but confirmed an overhauled planning document will not be in place until the end of 2014 at the earliest.