When districts gain undue territorial influence

I refer to Richard Garlick's comments (see related links) regarding the abortive proposals for an urban extension to Stevenage.

The problem of "underbounding" of urban areas is long overdue for addressing. This applies not only to the boundaries at district level - where towns and cities find large parts of their suburbs under the control of neighbouring authorities that do not pay towards the costs of the core town or city - but also to parishes.

It seems anomalous that residents of rural parishes are able to influence the future shape and form of urban areas that overlap their boundaries, while not actually having to live in them. Worse still, under the amended Community Infrastructure Levy regulations, these rural parishes will often be able to claim up to 25 per cent of the CIL receipts generated by the new development, with no obligation to spend the money in the newly urbanised area.

There is also a need to review county administrative boundaries, some of which bear no relation to spatial reality, such as travel-to-work patterns or functional economic areas.

Philip Bisatt, Taunton, Somerset.

Please submit your letters by emailing planning@haymarket.com


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