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Eco-Towns: Public Participation

Volume 476: debated on Monday 19 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government with reference to the Stage 2 and Stage 3 consultation procedures for eco-towns, what opportunities there will be for members of the public to participate in the consultation process; and what level of detail relating to each proposal will be available at each stage. (201841)

There will be considerable opportunity for public consultation at Stage 2 of the eco-towns consultation procedures, as there is currently during Stage 1. Over the next three months we are consulting on preliminary views on eco-town benefits and the shortlisted locations, as set out in the consultation document “Eco-towns—Living a greener future”. Bidders are publicising further details of schemes and holding consultation events, with input from local authorities. The arrangements will vary according to the location and the status of the schemes being developed. My Department will also be commissioning exhibition and consultation events about the eco-towns concept and the proposals in the consultation paper.

At Stage 2 we will publish—for further consultation—a draft Eco-towns Policy Statement and a draft Sustainability Appraisal which will set out more detail for each location.

Stage 3 of the process, as set out in “Eco-towns—Living a greener future”, will be the stage at which we publish the final list of locations with potential to be an eco-town and the final Eco-towns Policy Statement. After this it will be for individual schemes on the final shortlist to come forward with planning applications.