A district council needs the help of residents to form a new plan to further develop the region.

Cherwell District Council’s executive approved a draft of a community involvement paper on Monday.

It will be used to start discussions in north Oxfordshire on issues that need to be considered in preparing a new Cherwell Local Plan extending to 2040.

Policies that guide the development of new homes, workplaces and infrastructure will be reviewed, but residents, businesses and other stakeholders need to be involved at an early stage before any polices or proposals are determined.

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Councillor Colin Clarke, lead member for planning, said: “The Local Plan guides all the decisions we make about new developments in our district. It influences the growth and sustainability of our economy and helps us protect what makes our local areas distinctive.

“Whether it is the internet revolution, big infrastructure projects, or the climate emergency, the review of our Local Plan will help us make sure that Cherwell is well placed to respond to the wider, evolving context.

“We are also clear that the forthcoming Plan will be key to our long term coronavirus response. The pandemic and lockdown measures have underscored the importance of good quality housing, access to green space, and digital infrastructure.

“This is as an opportunity to listen to our residents and to do some long-term thinking about how we can support economic and social recovery, encourage active travel and promote community cohesion.”

The next step is a six-week consultation and engagement exercise on the community involvement paper, which will run during July and August.

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The start date for the consultation will be announced soon and the preparation of the plan and further consultation will continue throughout 2021 and 2022 with the hope of completing the plan by summer 2023.

To participate, documents will be available online instead of at the council’s usual deposit locations due to coronavirus restrictions.

Council officers are available to assist and the council will look to use its deposit locations when conditions allow.

The existing Cherwell Local Plan 2011-2031 was adopted in 2015. It contains planning policies for development and the use of land, helping in the determination of planning applications.