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About the Greater Cambridge Local Plan


The Greater Cambridge Local Plan

Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council are working together to create a joint Local Plan for the 2 areas – which we are referring to as Greater Cambridge. This is the first time we will have a joint Local Plan, and it will ensure that there is a consistent approach to planning and building across both areas over the next 20 years.

A Local Plan is a legal document that the Councils are required to prepare, which sets out the future land use and planning policies for the area over a set time period. It sets out:

  • the amount of new homes and jobs that should be planned for
  • the services and infrastructure that are needed to support this change
  • where new development should happen, and where should be protected from development

It follows a process set out in national legislation and guidance and is independently tested at a public examination to check it is sound. This means that it is realistic, deliverable and based on good evidence – before it can be formally adopted.

Local Plans are key in making decisions on future planning applications in the area, alongside national planning policy and other supplementary guidance.

Map of Greater Cambridge

What we have done so far

In 2019 we held an initial Call for Sites and initial workshops with a wide range of groups including residents associations, Parish Councils, landowners and agents, statutory consultees and others, to understand what they felt the key issues for the Plan might be. 

In January and February 2020, we started the public conversation with our communities about how we want our area to change, in our First Conversation consultation.

We asked you about:

In September 2020 we published the responses to the consultation and calls for sites. 


In November 2020 we published initial evidence base findings and development strategy options assessments – read more about where to build, and how much.  These are interim findings which will be developed further as the Plan is progressed, and a range of other studies are also being developed. No decisions have been made yet about what the eventual strategy will be. 

What happens next 

The evidence base we are developing will help the Councils develop a well-informed ‘preferred option’ for how much development to plan for, and where development should be allocated in the new Local Plan.  

We will hold the next formal public consultation, on the preferred options for the Local Plan, in summer or autumn 2021. To keep updated, please fill in the contact form on the Talk to the team page. 

Please refer to our Local Development Scheme for more detail about how we intend to develop the Plan. 

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