A CONSERVATION group has urged Government ministers not to accept the latest housing development target for the West Midlands.
Up to 5,000 acres of green belt land could be lost if plans to build 445,000 new homes by 2026 go ahead, warned the Campaign to Protect Rural England.
The projected figure for new-builds is far greater than the maximum 365,000 homes regional councils believe it is possible to deliver.
In a written submission to a public inquiry into the Regional Spatial Strategy, CPRE said it was strongly opposed to the erosion and weakening of the green belt at a time when conservation measures needed to be at their strongest in order to divert new development from the countryside to the cities.
It also said a wholesale incursion into the countryside would break a promise given by Gordon Brown two years ago that “green belt land would stay as green belt land”.
Changes to the green belt were unjustified, said CPRE, adding: “The effect is to usher in a process of nibbling which is foreign to the function and purposes of green belts.”
CPRE says Solihull is among 10 West Midlands areas where the green belt is most at risk.