30,000 Less Houses Needed in Greater Manchester to Save Green Belt, say Countryside Campaigners
The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) says that the housing figures in the Draft Greater Manchester Strategic Framework should be at least 30,000 lower than are being planned, after employing an independent expert demographer to check the figures of Greater Manchester Combined Authority.
CPRE have lodged a powerful response to the consultation on the Draft Greater Manchester Spatial Framework, the first sub-regional plan of its type in the country. It will impact development decisions of all 10 Greater Manchester authorities for 20 years.
CPRE’S submission, which is an antidote to those of the developers who are appealing for higher housing figures, says that if housing provision was reduced by 30,000 to below 200,000, if the targets for building on previously developed land were raised and if the employment land allocations were more realistic and took properly into account the technological advances, then there would only need to be the most minimal amount of Green Belt loss, if any.
Jackie Copley, the planning manager for CPRE Lancashire Branch who has pulled together CPRE’s submission to the Greater Manchester Combined Authority on behalf of the campaigners’ North West Regional Group, its Lancashire and Cheshire Branches and Friends of the Peak District, says:
“The countryside is such a valuable asset that it should be better protected and enhanced in the future. CPRE supports strategic planning of new sustainable development for Greater Manchester, but argues the scale of development proposed is unjustified, and more brownfield development could, and should, be promoted.’
The Greater Manchester Spatial Framework and its proposals to build over 4,900 hectares of Green Belt has been heavily criticised by all the Greater Manchester mayoral candidates.