Your chance to comment on creating quality homes

Central Bedfordshire Council is asking people to comment on its draft Design Guide - as it sets its sights on top quality new-build housing.

The council is asking for public feedback on the draft guide which looks at key principles and standards to guide developers and agents the design of new development across Central Bedfordshire.

The area will see significant growth in both housing and employment in the coming years to keep pace with population growth, and the council wants to ensure that high standards of design are followed.

Councillor Nigel Young, Executive Member for Sustainable Communities (Strategic Planning and Economic Development) said: “We’ve got some key design priorities that we think will make the difference between standard and really top-quality housing.

“The sorts of things we’re looking at are decent sized rooms and gardens; suitable parking; and the ability to adapt to changing lifestyles, an ageing population and climate change.”

The draft is open for consultation from Monday, October 21 and runs until Friday 22 November. People can pass on their feedback via an online questionnaire at www.centralbedfordshire.gov.uk/consultations or by picking up a paper copy at the council’s Bedford, Dunstable and Chicksands offices.

You can also request a paper copy by emailing the council’s Local Planning and Housing team on LDF@centralbedfordshire.gov.uk.

Cllr Young said: “What we’re really concerned with is making sure that development isn’t just about numbers of houses – it’s about providing people with quality homes that they really love.

“This Guide is our way of making sure that important things - like the history of the area, how people get around new developments and allowing for future alterations and extensions - are considered as part of planning applications.”

The draft guide follows current best practice guidance on design and will help those planning any kind of development to quickly and effectively find out what is expected of them.

After the consultation period the council will finalise the Design Guide, after considering any suggestions or comments received. That revised document will then be considered by the Executive Committee of the council in the new year.

The Design Guide is being developed to support the policies in the emerging Development Strategy, which will be the main planning document for Central Bedfordshire when complete. If adopted, the Design Guide will offer detailed planning guidance to developers and agents when preparing planning applications.

All written comments should be submitted by Friday, November 22, 2013, and posted to the following freepost address or emailed to LDF@centralbedfordshire.gov.uk

Draft Design Guide Consultation

FREEPOST RSJS GBB2 SRZT

Central Bedfordshire Council

Priory House

Monks Walk

Chicksands

Shefford

SG17 5TQ