Richmondshire District Council's existing local plan, adopted in December 2014, includes an annual housing requirement of 180 homes. The council has now begun work on a revised local plan covering the period from 2014 to 2035.
In an issues and options paper published this week as the first stage of consultation on the revised plan, options for the emerging strategy include a reduction in the housing requirement to 15 homes per year.
It says that this "low scenario" is "calculated through the government’s proposed standard housing method and is based upon the 2014 sub-national population projections with an uplift for affordability".
The document refers to recently published mid-2014 household projections suggesting that population growth will be lower than previously expected. "Therefore lesser additional households will be created, resulting in a lower need for housing," it states.
Two other housing requirement options are proposed, resulting in 120 homes and 160 homes per annum. The highest housing growth scenario is intended to enable additional jobs growth, the council says.
The paper also proposes three economic development scenarios, ranging from a net loss of 20 jobs per year through to 109 additional jobs.
Elsewhere in the paper, proposed changes include amendments to the local plan’s key strategic issues section to place increased focus on the need for affordable housing, a wider range of employment opportunities and measures to address the "declining and ageing population" in rural areas.
Consultation on the issues and options paper will run until 31 October. The council said work to revise the local plan, which covers the part of the district lying outside the Yorkshire Dales National Park, is expected to take three years.
The issues and options paper can be found here.