The current Green Belt is not fit for purpose in the West of England in the 21st century according to the region’s Metro Mayor. Dan Norris says it fails to protect land that is vital for wildlife and people’s mental wellbeing, while hindering building vital homes on brownfield sites.
The Metro Mayor says he would like the region’s Spatial Development Strategy which allocates housing to broad areas to explicitly say there should be no overall square footage loss of Green Belt in the West of England but that the areas in the Greenbelt should be changed.
Metro Mayor Dan Norris said: “There is a climate and biodiversity emergency and families can’t afford a place to call home. That’s why we need to extend urban areas in some carefully chosen places. We need to make every inch of Greenbelt matter. The test should not be an historical line on a map but whether Greenbelt land brings the best benefits to local communities. We need to protect wildlife corridors and the outdoor spaces that people can use to walk their dogs, ramble, picnic and cycle”.
The regional Spatial Development Strategy is used by local councils to draw up Local Plans which have the power to officially change to the Green Belt boundary.