Local plan adopted

Sunderland's Core Strategy - or Local Plan - has now been adopted as City Council policy.

The plan sets out how Sunderland should develop in coming years and allocates how land should be developed or kept for businesses and new jobs, housing and recreation.

It includes land allocations to support more than 7,000 new jobs and outlines how at least 13,410 more homes will be delivered by 2033, with an average of 745 to be built every year to help deal with population increase. The plan also sets out a framework for protecting the environment and reducing unhealthy living, as it includes new planning rules against fast food restaurants and takeaways.

Yesterday's (Wednesday 29 January) full meeting of the City Council approved the plan for adoption following a referral and backing from the council's Cabinet on Tuesday 14 January.

A vote was taken on the adoption with 36 votes in favour, 23 against and two abstentions.

Cabinet Member for Housing and Regeneration, Councillor Rebecca Atkinson said: "This plan is a strategic planning policy framework which will guide and shape the development of our city in coming years.

"It is a plan which will ensure that Sunderland is a city that is open for business and growth, providing jobs and prosperity for local people, delivering housing to meet the needs of all of our communities, and tackling deprivation within the city."

Adoption follows major consultation exercises by the council and an Examination in Public with an independent planning inspector in May and June 2019. At the examination, residents, businesses and other stakeholders made further representations.

As part of the examination, the council undertook a further six week consultation on proposed modifications to the plan. The Inspector issued his final report on 7 January 2020 and advised that, subject to the proposed modifications, the plan was considered to be ‘sound’ and capable of adoption by the council.

With the vote and adoption by council at today's meeting, the plan formally takes effect from Thursday 30 January 2020.

Leader of Sunderland City Council, Councillor Graeme Miller said: "I would again like to thank everyone who contributed either during all the extensive consultation or at the hearings.

"This consultation and community engagement was always a key part of drawing up the drafts and of the adoption process. Sunderland's Local Plan now sits alongside this City Council's own plans for a more vibrant, healthy and dynamic future."