Greater Exeter Strategic Plan

GESP consultation advert panel

Posted on: 23 February 2017

To help bring forward a better future for the wider area Mid Devon, East Devon, Teignbridge and Exeter City councils in partnership with Devon County Council, have teamed up to write the joint Greater Exeter Strategic Plan (GESP), which looks forward to 2040.

People in the area are being invited to share their views about the future of the Greater Exeter area and the key issues that need to be addressed.  The comments received will help to inform a new joint plan that will identify the housing, jobs and infrastructure needs across the four districts in years to come.

A consultation is being held between 27 February and 10 April 2017 for residents, developers and landowners to submit their comments, which will form part of the first phase of the plan preparation process.  People can leave their feedback as follows:

For general enquiriesFor queries relating to Mid Devon specifically
WebVisit www.gesp.org.uk and fill in the online consultation form
Emailgesp@devon.gov.ukfplan@middevon.gov.uk
Telephone0345 155 101501884 234221
TwitterFollow #GESPlan

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Each council will also be holding exhibitions for the public to find out more about the plan:

  • Wednesday 8 March, 2pm to 8pm, Mackarness Hall, High Street, Honiton
  • Wednesday 15 March, 2pm to 8pm, Mid Devon District Council Office, Phoenix House, Phoenix Lane, Tiverton
  • Thursday 16 March, 2pm to 8pm, The Guildhall, High Street, Exeter
  • Thursday 23 March, 2pm to 8pm, Old Forde House, Brunel Road, Newton Abbot

The plan will address the future housing needs across the area, ensuring enough is built of the correct type and at the right locations to suit people’s budgets.  For communities to thrive, jobs and infrastructure is also required, but it’s also recognised that each area has special environmental qualities which need protecting and enhancing so it remains a great place to live, work and visit.

The GESP will sit above District-level Local and community Neighbourhood Plans, taking a long-term strategic view to ensure important decisions about development and investment are coordinated.

Its purpose is to establish an aspirational and joined-up vision for the area to:

  • Meet the area’s housing needs in the right locations
  • Secure economic growth and increased prosperity
  • Provide transport and infrastructure improvements needed to support sustainable growth
  • Safeguard and enhance the environmental assets of the area

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There is also a ‘call for sites’ process running alongside the consultation, providing the opportunity for individuals or organisations to put forward suggestions for areas that may have the potential for future development.  An online form to provide details of potential sites is available at https://www.gesp.org.uk/call-for-sites.

Cllr Clive Eginton, Leader of Mid Devon District Council, said:

“This is an excellent opportunity to reflect on how our residents and businesses live their lives across council administrative boundaries and to start embedding our shared aspiration for a successful future in plans for the Greater Exeter area.”

Cllr Jeremy Christophers, Leader of Teignbridge District Council said:

“The creation of a strategic plan across a wider economic geography responds to how people actually live their lives. Combining housing options with job opportunities and providing the proper transport will support our ambition for local people to the live the lives they wish for. As councils, we need to work together to deliver better results for the future – clearly, this is the way forward.”

Cllr Paul Diviani, Leader of East Devon District Council said:

“It has been clear for some time that there was a significant gap left with the demise of the Devon Structure Plan and without wishing to re-invent the wheel, we should be establishing a strategic plan for our greater Exeter, greater Devon area which has input from Devon, Exeter, Mid Devon, Teignbridge and ourselves. We are the epi-centre of the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership and we need to ensure we have a central, aligned, significant role to play as we take our well-established partnership forward.”

Cllr Pete Edwards, Leader of Exeter City Council said:

“Every weekday 37,000 people commute into Exeter and 11,000 people head out of Exeter. These volumes are second only to Cambridge and it is imperative that we address housing, transport and infrastructure in a joined-up way to respond to this reality.”

Cllr John Hart, Leader of Devon County Council, said:

“The emerging relationship between the four local authorities in preparing a single Local Plan for the area is a very positive step and will help the planning system to work efficiently to boost the supply of housing and growth required.  We are pleased and well-placed to be part of this collaborative way of working, which will improve and streamline our planning system.”

The District and City councils already have their own Local Plans and have been working together on planning issues for many years alongside the County Council.  There is now much more expectation from the government that councils will work across their boundaries to deal comprehensively with development needs.

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