10th October 2011
In their submission to Maidstone Borough Council's consultation on the Core Strategy, Maidstone Greens have called for higher density housing to prevent urban sprawl while ensuring enough homes for the future; a move away from Maidstone's reliance on retail industry towards music, knowledge and energy sectors; and a reduction in traffic of 50% by 2026. This compares with the Council's suggestion of low density housing covering the KIG site, plus Allington and Shepway extensions, the Council's suggestion of an increase in traffic by 30% and their vision to increase the retail sector in the town. The Greens have called for a more European feel to the town.
Stuart Jeffery, Maidstone Green Party: "They really don't have a clue what Maidstone needs. Increasing urban sprawl across greenfield sites will help nobody except the rich developers. There is enough land in the town to meet the housing needs for the next 15 years, farm land must be maintained for farming.
"The town urgently needs to move away from its reliance on the retail sector. We need to embrace the music and entertainment industry, energy industries and the knowledge sector. Retail will continue to decline and Maidstone will only survive if it diversifies.
"And as for planning for a 30% increase in traffic, that is ludicrous. Not only will the price of fuel mean that this simply will not happen, there wouldnâ€™t be the infrastructure to support it even if it did. The council should be planning to get people out of cars and into public transport or better still walking or cycling."
Maidstone Green Party's submission is available here: http://maidstone.greenparty.org.uk/publications/CoreStrategySubmission2011.pdf