Ipswich Strategic Planning Area

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Ipswich has relatively tight administrative boundaries and there are cross boundary issues that are relevant to the development and future of the Borough, the urban area of Ipswich and surrounding areas. This has long been recognised with the identification of the ‘Ipswich Policy Area’.

The area has now been extended and renamed as the Ipswich Strategic Planning Area (ISPA).  The geography of the area now equates with the Ipswich Housing Market Area and the Ipswich Functional Economic Area, which both extend over the whole of Ipswich Borough, and Babergh, Mid Suffolk and the former Suffolk Coastal District element of East Suffolk.

There is an ISPA Board consisting of councillors from Babergh, Mid Suffolk and East Suffolk, Ipswich Borough Council and Suffolk County Council which is a key vehicle for cross boundary planning in the ISPA. The Board is supported by an officer group made up of key officers from the constituent authorities.

The Statement of Common Ground will be refined to add further clarity to the specific approach on an on-going basis. It is intended that the Statement of Common Ground will be signed prior to the submission of each Local Plan for Examination. This version has been signed prior to the submission of the Babergh and Mid Suffolk Joint Local Plan (March 2021).

The terms of reference of the ISPA Board are shown below:

The revised Terms of Reference refers to preparing Statement(s) of Common Ground to support Local Plan making and monitoring. The Statement of Common Ground has now been prepared, agreed and signed on behalf of the constituent authorities.

Action notes from the meetings, once agreed by the Board, will be available to view on this page together with published discussion papers.

Duty to Co-operate and Adopted Local Plans

Ipswich Borough Council prepared a Duty to co-operate statement and accompanying Ipswich Policy Area map to explain the approach to working with other bodies on strategic planning matters during preparation of the adopted Ipswich Local Plan 2017. The Duty to co-operate statement was updated in December 2015 to accompany submission of the Ipswich Local Plan to the Government for Examination during 2016.

A Memorandum of Understanding relating to planning for housing and employment development within the Ipswich Housing Market Area and Ipswich Functional Economic Area was signed in June 2016.

View further information on the adopted Ipswich Local Plan and the joint or aligned Local Plan review.

Superseded Statement of Common Ground