Steve Rotheram
The document will inform planning decisions across the city region, said Rotheram

Liverpool seeks views on 15-year spatial strategy

Sarah Townsend

The second stage of a consultation to inform an emerging blueprint for the future of planning and development in the city region launched today, focussing on placemaking, communities and job creation.

Metro Mayor for the Liverpool City Region Steve Rotheram urged local residents to submit suggestions for the combined authority’s first spatial development strategy, which aims to set out a framework for lane use and development for the next 15 years.

The SDS is a statutory planning document, which, when published, will form part of the ‘development plan’ for the city region’s six local councils alongside their own local plans and neighbourhood plans.

The policies that make up the SDS will be considered by local authorities when determining planning applications across the city region.

The first stage of the  ‘Our Places’ consultation asked people what they wanted the plan to cover and focussed on engaging communities whose voices often go unheard in the planning process, such as deprived Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities, according to the city region combined authority. The consultation this year garnered 2,500 responses.

The second stage of the consultation will concentrate on people’s specific ideas for the SDS across five key areas: climate change and the environment; health and wellbeing; inclusive economic growth; placemaking and communities, and social value

The consultation will also ask for suggestions in certain policy areas, including air quality, active travel and employment skills.

After receiving responses, the combined authority will review the feedback and take them into consideration together with formal evidence as it compiles the strategy.

A draft of the SDS will then be presented to the combined authority, followed by a 13-week consultation when the public will be able to comment on specific policies.

Rotheram said: “With ‘Our Places’, we’re putting local people’s views front and centre when it comes to developing the region’s policies. Your views will help us make important decisions about the future of everything from jobs and transport, to health and housing right across our region.

“We might be in a difficult time at the moment, but your answers could help decide the direction of our region for years to come.”

The Our Places consultation can be accessed here.

Register to attend Place North West‘s Merseyside Development Update online on Thursday 12 November.

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The logical priorities are to first and foremost attract jobs and develop suitable office/business space; improve the local public transport network with more train stations and bring disused lines back into use; grow the population and footfall, especially around the main shopping areas in the six boroughs to make them sustainable, and better connected [the city region] to the rest of Britain and abroad, which means direct HS2 and NPR links, and a bigger airport for when things get back to normal.

By Anonymous

The biggest priority is to increase the supply of better paid jobs into the city region, and create the conditions for this through quality accommodation, housing choice, better roads, and a more flexible HE and FE that helps more people become job-ready. All else flows from that. Some town centres need a total reinvention with less dependency on traditional retail. That’s a massive challenge facing most areas. If people think that we just go back to normal after the peak of Covid, they are delusional.

By Mark Gilbertson