After four years of work, West Berkshire Council has signed off the 27 sites across the district allocated for housing.
The development plan document recommends housing site allocations with the aim that at least 10,500 extra homes are built between 2006 and 2026.
With the DPD passed after last week’s full council meeting, it should mean that speculative plans for sites not
allocated by the council should
not gain approval.
Hilary Cole, the council’s executive member for housing, said: “I’m delighted to say that all the hard work that’s gone into producing the West Berkshire plan, which began in September 2013, has now come to an end.
“It’s a process which has been long and tortuous. It’s involved heated debate, full and extensive consultation, and a live webcast of council in November 2015.
“It has resulted in West Berkshire having an up-to-date plan for which you should all be grateful, and which means we are a plan-led authority.”
The four-year process has been controversial at times, particularly when the proposed sites were decided upon in 2015 following a public consultation, with 18,000 comments received.
The adoption of the DPD wasn’t opposed by the Liberal Democrat group on the council, although they didn’t go as far as supporting it.
Group deputy leader Alan Macro said: “The Liberal Democrat group has consistently opposed many of the housing sites, in particular the concentration of sites between Greenham and Newbury,
“However we’re in a hideous position, as put simply, if this DPD is not adopted, the council will not be able to demonstrate a five-year land supply.
“We’ve been subject to planning by appeal which we’ve not wanted, so we on this side will not be opposing this.”
Also voted through at last Tuesday’s meeting was to go to public consultation over the council’s minerals and waste local plan, which details sites where quarries can be excavated.
Seven preferred sites have been proposed, including near Brimpton Common, Burghfield Common, Brimpton, Aldermaston, two near Ufton Nervet, and at Waterside Farm near Thatcham.
The consultation is due to begin on Friday and run for six weeks.