Following completion of Stages 1 and 2 of the Review of the Island's Development Plans, the Environment Department is now in the process of preparing a draft Island Development Plan as part of Stage 3 of the Review.
The new Development Plan will have a vital role in the Island's future by providing for the development it needs to maintain its economic prosperity and social and environmental needs whilst ensuring that it remains an unique and attractive place in which to live, work and to visit.
Public consultation has been integral to the review process, to ensure that as many people as possible have their say about the future development of the Island. The Department carried out a second stage public consultation between July and September 2013. The consultation addressed some of the key messages, issues and potential options arising from the first stage consultation and drew from information and evidence gathered by the Department.
Overall there was a positive response to the second stage consultation with many Islanders attending the information sessions and taking the opportunity to ask questions and discuss any views or issues with the Department's planning staff. The Department has published a Summary of Public Responses to this consultation, setting out a summary of the consultation process and providing an analysis of the written responses received. Copies are available online at www.gov.gg/planreview.
In respect of the consultation process, Environment Minister, Deputy Roger Domaille said:
"The Department would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has taken part in both consultation stages to date. They have clearly given a lot of thought as to how the Island should develop in the future and given us valuable insight into the issues which the new Island Development Plan must address."
The consultation included a 'Call for Sites', providing an opportunity for residents, landowners and organisations to suggest land in Guernsey within and around the edges of the main and potential local centres, which could, in principle, be available for development over the next 10 years. The sites submitted for the Call for Sites are currently being assessed to inform the Strategic Housing Land Availability Study and Employment Land Study which will be published alongside the Draft Plan.
The research undertaken by the Department, in conjunction with the feedback received to the wider consultation, will help inform the preparation of a Draft Island Development Plan, which the Department expects to publish in late Spring/early Summer of 2014.
The Draft Plan will then be subject to a Public Inquiry and representations from the public, both for and against the proposed policies, can be submitted to the Inquiry for consideration by an independent Planning Inspector. The Inquiry will also provide a further opportunity to put forward any sites which were not submitted as part of the Call for Sites.
The Inquiry is expected to be held in late Autumn 2014. Subsequently, the Draft Plan together with any proposed changes will be put forward for States consideration.
The Department has produced a Community Guide to the Plan Review for further information on the Plan Review, how to access documents and how Islanders can expect to be consulted. This can be downloaded from the States website www.gov.gg or collected from the Environment Department reception at Sir Charles Frossard House.
Islanders can ask to be added to the Plan Review contact list and receive updates by email by sending their name and email address firstname.lastname@example.org. We are also on Twitter @planreviewgsy.