Future Amber Valley housing plans could involve further ‘urban extensions’ to Derby

A future housing plan in Amber Valley could involve further 'urban extensions' to Derby.
A future housing plan in Amber Valley could involve further 'urban extensions' to Derby.

A future housing plan in Amber Valley could involve further ‘urban extensions’ to Derby.

In May, Amber Valley Borough Council declared it would scrap its ongoing Local Plan – to cover future development up until 2028.

The costly and controversial plan had been in the works for years, with the last plan coming into force in 2006 and lapsing in 2011.

This has left the borough without an up-to-date plan for the last eight years – which it has a statutory duty to have in place.

The borough could face pressure from central government to get a replacement plan in place, or face intervention.

It is now preparing a new plan which would last until at least 2038.

Previous estimates had said that the potential cost of scrapping the old draft and preparing a new plan would be £1.4 million and would take up to five years to complete.

Amber Valley, Derby City Council and South Derbyshire District Council form the Derby Housing Market Area (HMA) and all three authorities have agreed to align all of their new local plans to match up with a similar timeframe.

Consultants are soon to be appointed to plan strategic ‘growth opportunities’ around the Derby area for the three authorities.

A study into this, which would include analysing environmental constraints and the potential infrastructure that would be required, will begin in November.

A report which will be discussed by Amber Valley councillors on Wednesday (September 25) says: “Amongst other things, it will consider opportunities for further sustainable urban extensions to Derby and opportunities for further sustainable growth in settlements throughout the rest of the Derby HMA.

“In doing this, it will have regard to their size, character, existing infrastructure and opportunities to improve this through new growth and the provision of services and facilities.

“The study will not need to consider the capacity for further growth within the administrative area of Derby City, as this is being assessed separately, although it will need to have regard to environmental constraints and opportunities within the city when considering opportunities for further sustainable urban extensions to Derby.”

Also in November, Amber Valley will bring out a report which will set out the cost, time and staff required to prepare a new local plan.

The council now says that it had hoped to have a new plan ready by March 2023 – a year sooner than originally estimated – but it also says that the plan may be completed significantly sooner.

Eddie Bisknell , Local Democracy Reporting Service