Housing plan 'not right' for Cwmbran - councillor

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A CWMBRAN community councillor has called for the Torfaen Local Development Plan (LDP) to be revised because it is “not right” for the area.

Llantarnam ward councillor Paul Williams is holding a public meeting next week to discuss the impact of the LDP, ahead of a special Torfaen County Borough Council (TCBC) meeting on December 3, where formal adoption of the plan will be considered.

He said the people of Torfaen should be consulted on the proposal to build more houses to offset a declining population in the borough.

“The population projections for local authorities in Wales indicate the population of Torfaen reaching a ‘peak’ of 90,000 in 2019 and declining every year after,” said Cllr Williams.

“Torfaen planning department, throughout the LDP hearings, emphasised a need to build more house than needed by the people of Torfaen to attract people into the borough.

“This is a political decision, not a planning determination. No councillor or political party has proposed building more house than required for this purpose.

“They should have presented this proposal to the people of Torfaen for them to make the decision to build these additional houses., because Of the 22 unitary authorities in Wales, Torfaen has the third lowest population, but the third highest population density with 717 people per sq km. Only Cardiff and Newport have higher.”

Cllr Williams also said that due to the size of the Blaenavon World Heritage Site, housing development would be concentrated in the southern area of the borough.

“Torfaen has to have an LDP, but it has to have the right LDP,” he added.

The council had yet to comment by the time the Argus went to press.

The public meeting will take place on November 26, at the Oakfield Inn, Cwmbran, from 7pm.

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