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Public consultation launches on Places for Everyone masterplan

People in Greater Manchester are being invited to have their say on the new masterplan for building new homes and creating new jobs in the city-region.

Places for Everyone – the successor to the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework (GMSF) – sets out what land will be freed up for development to meet government housing targets up until 2037. 

Town halls across the conurbation – except for Stockport, which pulled out of the GSMF last year – have backed the draft document despite opposition from some councillors.

This means that Places for Everyone will go out for an eight-week public consultation, which will run until 3 October. 

People will be asked if the plan meets ‘tests of soundness’ before it is sent off to the government for examination.

These include whether the plan promotes economic growth and makes provision for development, whether it is backed up by robust evidence; whether the plans are based on effective and achievable policies; and whether it meets national planning policies. 

The consultation is the final stage in the preparation of the plan, which proposes to build 165,000 new homes – down from the 227,000 in the 2016 GMSF draft, and with a 60 per cent reduction in green belt development compared to the first version.

Of these homes, 50,000 will be classed as affordable housing, with 30,000 available for social rent. 

More than 55 million sq ft of office, industrial and warehousing space is also proposed across the nine boroughs.

People taking part in the consultation will be able to view the proposed development sites and read supporting documents in the virtual exhibition space.

Hard copies will also be available to view at designation locations in the nine local authorities, with councils expected to hold further engagement events.

Salford city mayor Paul Dennett, who chairs the Places for Everyone joint committee and leads on housing for the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, has stressed the importance for people to get involved with the consultation. 

The consultation will also be different to the three that were carried out for the three iterations of the failed GMSF, according to the Salford council leader.

Mr Dennett said: “Places for Everyone underpins a wider vision for Greater Manchester that will put us on the best possible footing to face the challenges of the future.

“It will mean we decide what kind of development takes place and where, maximising the use of brownfield land and urban spaces while protecting green belt land from the risk of unplanned development. 

“It will benefit our places and help us recover from the pandemic, tackle housing inequality, and pave the way for a low-carbon economy.

“All nine councils have taken steps to make this consultation as open and accessible and possible, and will be engaging with residents over the next eight weeks to make sure everyone knows how they can take part and have their say.”

To take part in the consultation, go to www.gmconsult.org, and contact your local council for more information.

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