From the Press release June 2015:

At a meeting of the West of England Planning, Housing and Communities Board on Friday 26 June members are being asked to confirm the scope and programme for a new joint spatial plan for the sub-region, rolling forwards the existing planning frameworks to 2036.

All the four authorities have made a commitment to work jointly for sustainable growth across the West of England and together effectively shape the future of the area.

In order to achieve this, the joint spatial plan will be based on the following guiding principles:

  • a commitment to a plan-led approach to strongly guide future development and secure funding for essential infrastructure
  • balancing the need for growth and development with the need to secure quality of life and a strong environmental future
  • adopting a sequential approach to future development which prioritises the use of previously developed land and makes best use of our existing urban areas; and
  • ensuring that our transport plans are coordinated with the spatial plan and identifies key infrastructure requirements.

The joint spatial plan will need to consider how around 38,000 future dwellings could be accommodated into the sub region.  The authorities have already planned for 47,000 dwellings up to 2026 through their local plans and core strategies.

The figures are in a report by consultants ORS (Opinion Research Services) that sets out the Wider Bristol Strategic Housing Market Assessment taking into account forecast population growth, predicted jobs growth and affordable housing needs.

The total number of homes that will be provided will be assessed through the Joint Spatial Plan which will have to carefully balance this figure with other significant considerations such as environmental capacity and quality of life.

The joint spatial plan will:

  • provide the formal statutory framework for the councils Local Plans, going forwards to 2036, in a cross-authority, co-ordinated manner
  • set out the quantum of both market and affordable housing to be delivered over the plan horizon (2016/2036) and enable a five-year planning supply and 10-15 years of availability of land
  • identify broad strategic locations and give land-use expression to the employment land/floorspace needs arising from the strategic economic plan (to enable us to deliver the strategic economic plan which is all about new jobs and new opportunities, new training, new connectivity)
  • identify the strategic infrastructure proposals, including transport, required to deliver the scale of development envisaged, alongside an understanding of the costs of respective infrastructure packages and any viability issues that may arise
  • deliver balanced and sustainable communities into the future with housing, employment integrated transport and infrastructure to support a competitive and growing economy.

The West of England Planning, Housing and Communities Board meet on Friday 26 June at 11am at BAWA, 589 Southmead Road, Filton BS34 7RG.

Members for the West of England Planning, Housing and Communities Board are:

  • Cllr Marie Longstaff, Bath & North East Somerset Council
  • Cllr Simon Cook, Bristol City Council
  • Cllr Elfan Ap Rees, North Somerset Council
  • Cllr Ben Stokes and Cllr Brian Allinson, South Gloucestershire Council.

The agenda and papers are available to read by scrolling down the page at