09:00AM, Sunday 07 February 2021
The Royal Borough’s Housing strategy for the next five years has received a mixed response from the town’s civic group.
Titled ‘Crafting a borough of opportunity and innovation’, the paper sets out how it plans to create homes for those most in need up until 2025, and went out to a public consultation, which ended yesterday (Wednesday).
The draft plan sets out three main objectives: deliver new homes, promote health and wellbeing, and support vulnerable residents.
Providing feedback for the consultation, Maidenhead Civic Society was critical of many elements of the plan.
Martin McNamee, chair of the Civic Society’s planning group, said: “Overprovision of flats will result in individuals or couples being unable to move onto a family home with adequate bedrooms and outside space.
“With current mix of dwelling types, young families will have to leave Maidenhead – not because of ‘affordability’ but because family homes do not exist.”
Mr McNamee also called the plan’s pledge to ‘maximise’ the community infrastructure levy (CIL) paid by developers ‘implausible’ when 4,000 homes are already due to be built in the town centre with zero CIL contribution.
He went on to praise some elements of the plan, calling the commitment to seek sites for the traveller community ‘laudable’.
In the paper’s introduction, Councillor Ross McWilliams, lead member for housing, said: “We want to be a borough that delivers new homes not only for those coming into the borough, but for those who are already here.
“We want to be a borough that creates places that are not just bricks and mortar but promotes health and wellbeing.
“We want to be a borough that seeks to proactively prevent homelessness and rough sleeping by having a mixture of different homes with a mixture of affordability.”
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