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Mayor signals re-write of Greater Manchester Spatial Framework

by prestwichfocus on 17 May, 2017

The newly elected Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burmham, has announced a ‘re-write’ of the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework (GMSF).

The new Mayor said:
“I will listen to communities and oversee a radical rewrite of the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework. I will keep those high ambitions for the homes and jobs we need but there will be a substantial reduction in the loss of greenbelt. Our plan will build the right kind of homes in the right places.
“I’m also issuing a call to developers to work with me to revitalise and reshape our town centres. I want our towns to be residential centres that are fit for the future.
“The Greater Manchester Spatial Framework also provides a unique opportunity within Greater Manchester to provided much-needed homes our residents can afford, connect and strategically integrate the city-region, whilst giving all our residents the best chance of building stable homes, providing for jobs and opportunities, and creating communities we can all be proud of.”

(GMSF Draft 1 – signed up to by Bury’s Labour leadership, 20% of Bury’s Green belt land was to lost, 47% in Prestwich.)

Good news?
Perhaps… Let’s hope so, but for those many people who have been worried about the loss of green belt (47% of Prestwich’s greenbelt in the 1st GMSF plan), it is probably too soon to celebrate fully.

It is very welcome that there will be a new focus on revitalising town centre areas, this is exactly what we said at Bury Council when the issue was was debated earlier in the year.

The new Mayor has NOT said that no green belt land will be built on, only a substantial reduction. This is great news, but it remains to be seen WHICH PARTS of the green belt will still be proposed for development.

One thing which has not changed is the numbers. The Government (which could obviously change in 3 weeks time) will only sign off local plans when they provide space for the required numbers of homes. This is going to take some very innovative development in town centres to avoid wholesale loss of green belt.

We are going to continue to work with our local communities to make sure that our voices are heard at a Greater Manchester level, to get the best housing for our area, whilst protecting our green spaces.

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