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Residents urged to have say on future of Portland
RESIDENTS on Portland are being urged to have their say on the Island’s future.
Comments and views are being sought to help develop a Neighbourhood Plan.
A Neighbourhood Plan allows a community to look at future development needs and policies and potentially set local criteria.
The Portland Neighbourhood Plan Working Group has collated policies and strategies which will affect the island into a single document.
This is available online together with other information which charts the progress to date and project plan for the future.
The Neighbourhood Plan is designed to include the needs of the community which are not reflected in the local plan.
Andy Matthews, chairman of the Portland Neighbourhood Plan Working Group, said: “The Neighbourhood Plan is meant to fill in the detail of smaller developments that the community can get behind or understand.”
West Dorset District Council and Weymouth and Port-land Borough Council are working together on a joint Local Plan which, when adopted, will form the basis for making planning application decisions.
The process first started in June 2012, with a pre-submission draft Local Plan.
This was submitted one year later to the Planning Inspect-orate.
Following an exploratory meeting held in January this year to discuss the next steps, the examination of the local plan was formally suspended in March for a period of six months.
This decision was made in order to prepare additional evidence on housing issues.
Discussing the data collected for the Neigh-bourhood Plan, Mr Matthews said: “This is one of the first times that a package of everything has been brought together about Portland.
“It’s important for people to get these ideas in their head and think about solutions.”
The proposed Neighbourhood Plan will be subject to a referendum by island residents at a later date and approved if there is a majority vote agreeing with it.
The plan is intended to last up to 30 years with regular reviews, covering themes including business and the economy, roads and transport, and community facilities.
The thoughts of residents will be collected through a series of surveys.
These can be found at portlandplan.org.uk
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