The publication of the Draft Island Development Plan last Monday (16 February) has been well received by States departments and their ministers. The final Island Development Plan will determine how land is used and developed over the next ten years.
The Chief Minister, Deputy Jonathan Le Tocq, said:
"The Draft Island Development Plan is a significant document for Guernsey and will define how and where development is carried out for the next 10 years. It is vital that it fulfils the strategic objectives of the States and I am encouraged by the positive response of the Housing and Commerce and Employment Ministers".
After five years, the Plan will be reviewed for housing and economic land. Commenting on the role the Island Development Plan will have in delivering future housing, Deputy Dave Jones, the Housing Department Minister, said:
"Having looked at the housing policies contained within the Plan, I am confident that it will ensure land is available for the delivery of housing over the next 5 years.
"I am also delighted to see the inclusion of an affordable housing policy. This will introduce a new way of doing things in Guernsey that will assist in the provision of much needed social housing for people on low incomes".
The Draft Island Development Plan makes provision for economic growth in the Island including office accommodation, industrial development, storage space, and allows for the development of the digital economy.
Deputy Kevin Stewart, Commerce and Employment Minister, said:
"I am really pleased to see the publication of the Draft Island Development Plan that appears to adopt a very positive position regarding economic development. This will help contribute to our economic growth in the Island.
"If adopted, the Island Development Plan will give a clear message that Guernsey is 'open for business' and that the States is aligned in seeking to deliver the economic objectives of the States".
Deputy Le Tocq added:
"The Policy Council has now received the Draft Island Development Plan from the Environment Department and is now responsible for running the independent planning inquiry. This Draft Plan is such an important document that I would urge everyone to take time to view it. We have set up an excellent online system for making comments on the Draft Plan and our Inquiry Administrative Team will be happy to help people engage in the consultation process".
The online and detailed guidance on how to make representations can be accessed through www.gov.gg/planninginquiry. It is important for anybody who has an interest in the Draft Island Development Plan to submit their comments during the Initial Representation period which closes at 17:00 on Friday 10 April 2015. Regardless of whether somebody agrees or disagrees with how the policies in the Draft Island Development Plan, it is equally important that these views and the reasons for them are presented to the Planning Inspectors via the online system or using the approved form
On Monday 16 February 2015, the Environment Department published the draft Island Development Plan. Once adopted by the States, this draft Plan will replace the Urban and Rural Area Plans as the principal policy document for determining how and where development can take place in Guernsey.
Before the draft Island Development Plan can be adopted by the States, it must be subject to independent review. This will be undertaken by two experienced planning inspectors appointed by the Policy Council - Mr. Alan Boyland and Mr. Keith Holland. Mr. Boyland and Mr. Holland are both semi-retired, having worked for the UK Planning Inspectorate undertaking planning inquiries across England and Wales. Their appointment has been made under section 7 of the Land Planning and Development (Plans) Ordinance, 2007 and they will carry out the Planning Inquiry independently of the Environment Department, the Policy Council and all States departments and committees.
The Planning Inquiry will be split into three separate and distinct stages:
Initial Representations - an opportunity for individuals, groups, companies, societies, agents, etc. to make written comments on the policies in the draft Island Development Plan and the related Environmental Statement. Initial Representations may be made during the eight weeks from Monday 16 February 2015 and 17:00 on Friday 10 April 2015.
Further Representations - an opportunity for individuals, groups, companies, societies, agents, etc. to make written comments on the representations made during Initial Representations. Further Representations can be made during a six week period from Monday 11 May 2015 and 17:00 on Friday 26 June 2015.
Inquiry Hearings - a series of public hearings where the Planning Inspectors will take evidence on the issues raised in the Initial and Further Representations. The provisional date fixed for the start of the inquiry hearing is Monday 5 October 2015.
Anybody interested in making comments on the draft policies and proposals set out in the draft Island Development Plan is invited to make Initial Representations between now and 17:00 on Friday 10 April 2015.
Representations can be made online using the Planning Inquiry's website - www.gov.gg/planninginquiry - or in writing on the approved form which is available from Sir Charles Frossard House, La Charroterie, St. Peter Port, the various Parochial Constables' Offices and Douzaine Rooms, the Guille-Allès Library, and the Greffe, during normal office hours. Completed forms should be returned to the Planning Inquiry at Sir Charles Frossard House by 17:00 on Friday 10 April 2015.
Guidance notes about the Planning Inquiry itself and how to make and view representations using the online consultation document can be found on at www.gov.gg/planninginquiry or by emailing or speaking to a member of the Planning Inquiry Administration Team based at Sir Charles Frossard House (e-mail - email@example.com; telephone - 717284).