Panel wants Cornwall homes target cut

An independent panel has called for a cut in the housing target for Cornwall's draft structure plan, saying that 1,000 of the homes should be shifted across the county boundary to Devon.

The panel reports into the draft structure plans for Cornwall and Devon, both published last week, advise that the proposed housing allocation for Cornwall should be cut from 30,500 to 29,500, with the balance transferred to Devon, raising its allocation to 65,500 for 2001-16. The call comes after the panel decided that a proposed industrial site in Caradon, near the border with Devon, should be shelved.

The site, at Broadmoor Farm, was earmarked in the draft structure plan after the county council decided that it would be a suitable location for major employment. But the panel, chaired by Stephen Crow, ruled that it is not appropriate for employment use because it is not well-related to Plymouth in terms of transport links. The report calls for it to be dropped and for the housing total for Caradon to be reduced by 1,000 and earmarked for Plymouth instead.

Although the examinations-in-public for the two plans were separate, there was a three-day joint session at which the Plymouth sub-region was discussed. The reports commend the session as "a major step forward" in planning for cross-boundary issues.

The Devon panel supports proposals for two new settlements to be built by 2016 to cater for future housing needs - one in South Hams near Plymouth and the other in East Devon near Exeter. The former, at Sherford, should consist of 4,000 homes while the latter should include 3,000 new homes, it concludes.

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