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Colliers Comment: Christchurch & East Dorset Core Strategy20th May 2012

Photo by Zsuzsanna Kilian

Stakeholders have weeks left to register opinions on the Joint Christchurch and East Dorset Core Strategy, which will shape development in the area for the next 15 years.
Property consultants Colliers International are encouraging members of the public, landowners, developers and other stakeholders to make their views known to the councils before the consultation period closes on June 25.
Planning specialist Marcus Plaw said: “The Core Strategy will become a Local Plan for the area and guide development for the next 15 years.”
He identified the growing and aging population, pent up demand for homes, pressure on schools and the need to grow and diversify the economy as central elements of the Core Strategy. 
“The Core Strategy presents a range of policies relating to tourism and leisure, housing, retailing, general industry and the natural  environment. It identifies roles for the key towns such as Christchurch and Wimborne, local centres such as West Moors and the villages. 
“This consultation provides the opportunity for these policies to be supported, objected to or expanded.”
Marcus Plaw said the publication of the National Planning Policy Framework just days before the consultation process commenced would also have implications across the area. 
“There must be consistency between the Core Strategy and NPPF to ensure its robustness in enabling and controlling development.  It is likely that there will need to be some important policy changes.
“The Government’s clear message through the publication of the NPPF was to support planned, sustainable growth.  So this should be reflected in the content of the Core Strategy along with evidence that it has been positively prepared – in being drawn from objectively assessed infrastructure and development requirements.”
More than  3,000 new dwellings are proposed for  Christchurch Borough with the town’s urban area accommodating the majority of this requirement and urban extensions contributing significantly to the remainder. In East Dorset, the development of 5,280 is split between existing urban areas and new neighbourhoods. Overall the area will see significant change by 2028.  
Copies of the draft Core Strategy and its supporting evidence is available at the offices of both councils, libraries and on the 

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