Councillors have backed the next stage in preparing a controversial framework for growth which includes plans for 5,900 homes.
The majority of St Edmundsbury Borough Council members voted in favour of submitting Vision 2031 to the Secretary of State for a public examination by a Planning Inspector.
It follows the last stage of consultation on the legality and soundness of the documents, which attracted 395 responses with 311 objections and 84 in support,
The plans would see 900 homes built between the Howard Estate and Fornham All Saints, 500 at Moreton Hall, 1,250 between Bury and Great Barton, 450 at Westley and 1,250 to the south east of the town near Rougham.
Cllr David Nettleton said he supported the ‘general principles outlined in the document’ but he had ‘less confidence’ in Suffolk County Council’s travel plan to mitigate the effects of new housing.
Referring to the number of objections, he said: “We’re pushing this through despite the fact people don’t want us to.”
Cllr Diane Hind said: “I oppose Vision 2031 in its current form. I don’t think it adequately addresses concerns with regards to roads, transport and communities.”
Backing the proposals, Cllr John Griffiths, leader of the council, said: “It’s a big step forward. It will enable St Edmundsbury to protect and preserve and indeed hopefully get the right kind of housing and infrastructure and not leave us open to speculative applications of whatever nature.”
He said he ‘appreciates lots of people think it isn’t perfect’ but it is ‘an overall framework which allows us to go forward with detailed master planning’.
He added that the county council highways department have ‘a lot of work to do’.
For full details see Friday’s Bury Free Press.