Your chance to help shape the future of Exeter over the next 20 years

Residents and businesses are being urged to have their say over the way in which Exeter should grow and develop in the future.

A report to Executive seeks approval for a public consultation on the Outline Draft Exeter Plan – the city’s new Local Plan.

The Exeter Plan will be ground breaking and is the first new local plan for the city in 10 years. It looks ahead over the next 20 years, to 2040, and will be the blueprint that shapes the future development of Exeter.

The plan talks about important issues like climate change, homes and jobs, the future of our high streets, transport and infrastructure and design quality.

Members of the Executive will be asked to approve an eight week consultation, starting on 26 September.

The Outline Draft Exeter Plan includes around 30 policies which reflect issues raised from the first ‘Issues’ consultation on the emerging plan in 2021.

The Outline Draft Plan sets out the city’s spatial strategy and highlights the benefits of steering the majority of development towards strategic brownfield sites in order to protect the city’s landscape setting and environmental quality.

The Outline Draft Plan supports other Council strategies to help achieve our Net Zero 2030 ambition, enable nature recovery, continue Exeter’s economic success, including in the city centre, provide the homes we need, develop our cultural offer, enhance Exeter’s rich heritage and support a healthy and inclusive city.

Potential development sites are identified as locations where new homes and other mixed uses could be developed in the future.

Engaging with residents and those who work, study in or visit the city is a crucially important part of preparing the new plan.

That’s why the Council is committed to ensuring that the latest phase of consultation informs and engages as many people as possible.

City Council Leader Phil Bialyk said: “Exeter is a fantastic city and I know that all of our residents feel the same way, so it is very important that everyone has a say on how it develops in the future.

“That’s why we want everyone to make sure their voices are heard. We’re reaching out to all of our communities and businesses with the draft plan. It will touch the lives of everyone living in the city as well as those working, studying in or visiting Exeter, so everyone needs to own it and have a say.”

City Councillor and Portfolio Holder for City Development and Planning Emma Morse also said: “I’m delighted we now have a first draft of the Exeter Plan which we promised when the Council set out a timetable for a new Local Plan, last year.

“This new Plan is unlike any previous versions because it’s mainly digital.  We’re making the Exeter Plan available online, to be more attractive and easier to read, including on mobile phones. This is part of our approach to widen interest in planning and involve all of our communities.”

Details of the consultation will be advertised in the local media, online and via the Council’s social media channels. It will include:

  • An interactive and easy to navigate online platform called Commonplace
  • Questions on each section of the document
  • Accessible consultation material
  • Digital communication and social media
  • Hard copies of consultation materials in specified public places
  • A series of public exhibitions to enable face-to-face discussion

The Council has a statutory duty to prepare planning policy for the city, and the Exeter Plan will replace earlier development plans for the city.

Government has calculated that Exeter needs to provide 650 homes per year. In order to meet this requirement a series of sites are identified.

These include the eight large-scale strategic sites identified as part of Liveable Exeter, a series of smaller sites owned by the Council, sites promoted by third parties and a small number of sites, which are already allocated in the Core Strategy but have not yet been built.

The consultation will be undertaken in accordance with the Council’s newly adopted Statement of Community Involvement and the Consultation Charter.

A report will be brought back to Executive exploring the comments made in the consultation and explaining how they will be taken into account in shaping the next stage of the Exeter Plan.

Further consultation will then be held in 2023.

  • Members of the Council’s Executive are due to discuss the report on Tuesday 6 September.

Your chance to help shape the future of Exeter

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