Rezoning plan goes to a vote

THE fate of a plan seven years in the making on the future of Blacktown is in the hands of the councillors tonight.

An extraordinary meeting was held to hear from residents whose homes will be rezoned by the Blacktown local environmental plan and acquired by the council.

The number of affected houses under the revised plans has reduced from 488 to 94.

Of those, 57 homes are required for open space, 36 for drainage purposes and one to create an access road for a future state government residential development.

Mayor Len Robinson said the council won't force residents out of their homes but that open space was critical to meet the needs of the growing population.

"We're doing the right thing by planning for the future," he said.

"There's more growth in Blacktown than anywhere else in Australia."

The council's planning director Glennys James said the revised plan had been well received.

Ms James hoped councillors would adopt the report tonight and not defer their decision until February.

"The Minister for Planning has said he wants all new local environmental plans] finished and gazetted by mid next year," Ms James said. "Any delays would put the plan at risk."

■ More to come tomorrow.

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