Councils: Vale housing targets must increase

House building
House building

Housing targets for Aylesbury Vale must be increased, Bucks councils have said.

The Vale of Aylesbury Plan proposes building 6,000 homes and creating 6,000 jobs across the district up to 2031.

However, during a consultation on the plan, Aylesbury Town Council, Bucks County Council, Wycombe District Council and Chiltern District Council have all questioned the housing target.

Aylesbury Town Council’s Steven Mitchell said of the target: “Over nearly 20 years we think that number will prove inadequate. They should be looking at having more housing developments at strategic employment sites.”

Mr Mitchell agreed infrastructure would need to be improved either way, something Aylesbury Vale District Council says is a key part of the plan.

Vale council chiefs originally planned to set the target at 9,000, but were pressured into reducing it to 6,000.

Should the Vale plan be approved, only another 800 homes would need to be built around Aylesbury in addition to those already going ahead.

Responding to the plan, Bucks County Council’s Janet Blake, who is also a Conservative councillor at district level, wrote: “The 800 homes that remain to be allocated in Aylesbury over the next 20 years (and 2,750 in the rest of the district) is not likely to be a sizeable enough figure to deliver additional significant infrastructure, regardless of its eventual location.”

Mrs Blake said the county council could not ‘fully endorse the plan as being sound’.

Wycombe council said the plan is ‘unsound’, suggesting the target be increased or a ‘strong and early plan review’ mechanism be introduced.

Chiltern District Council said the plan does not sufficiently take into account cross-boundary growth and that the housing target should be increased.