HOUSING numbers in Solihull’s local plan have been given the nod of approval but the Council has been asked to re-think developments in Knowle and at the NEC.
Local Plan Inspectors have agreed that the Council’s identified housing requirements are appropriate.
They also accepted the Council’s approach to support the unmet housing needs from the wider housing market area.
In doing so, it means the Council has passed the planning test known as the ‘Duty to Cooperate’ with neighbouring Councils.
But the Inspectors have called on the Council to look a little closer at the developments at the NEC and in the Knowle Triangle.
Solihull Council said issues around the housing capacity proposed at the NEC that the Council can rely on to be delivered during the Plan period were raised.
According to the Council the Inspectors have indicated the capacity should be reduced to 500 homes for the Plan purposes.
In Knowle Inspectors have agreed the site is an appropriate allocation, but that it should not be dependent on a new Arden Academy, say the Council.
Councillor Andy Mackiewicz, cabinet member for Climate Change, Planning and Housing, said: “Whilst we are very pleased that one of the key issues for the Plan (the housing requirement) has been settled, we are very disappointed that the Inspectors haven’t supported the delivery envisaged at the NEC, or the need to facilitate the regeneration of Arden Academy.
“We recognise it remains vitally important that we progress towards a sound Local Plan, however, it is of equal importance that Plan is sustainable and deliverable for the Borough. We will therefore be working with the Inspectors to better understand the reasoning behind their current conclusions before setting out how we intend to address them.”
Any changes to the Plan will be reviewed by Councillors before being subject to public consultation.