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Firepool Masterplan

Draft Firepool Masterplan

The Council has produced an ambitious, up to date Draft Masterplan for the Firepool regeneration site in Taunton town centre. The Draft Masterplan proposes an ambitious mixed-use scheme comprising of new homes and a leisure quarter organised around a high-quality public realm, designed to support revitalisation and regeneration of Taunton town centre.

Public consultation on the Draft Masterplan took place from Monday 21 November until Monday 2 January 2023. Whilst consultation has now closed, you can still access the consultation draft, supporting material and background information at Draft Firepool Masterplan Consultation Hub.

We are now in the process of reviewing, summarising and updating the Masterplan in response to comments received. The final Masterplan is currently expected to be considered by Full Council in March 2023.

Background

Firepool is a major regeneration area within Taunton town centre, with aspirations for its development for many years. The adopted Taunton Town Centre Area Action Plan (2008) allocates the site for development. However, a number of circumstances have changed since then which mean it is appropriate to produce a new Masterplan to provide an up to date planning policy context.

The Firepool site is owned and is being developed by Somerset West and Taunton Council. The Council are also the Local Planning Authority (LPA). The Council therefore has two distinct and separate roles with regards to the site, as Developer and as the LPA. The Council as developer has produced the Draft Masterplan, and as Local Planning Authority has approved the Draft Masterplan for public consultation.

Following consultation and any appropriate amendments, the Local Planning Authority intends to adopt the final version of the Masterplan as a material consideration in the determination of future planning applications for the site.

The Council has determined that the Masterplan is required to be accompanied by both Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) and Habitat Regulations Assessment (HRA) in accordance with relevant Regulations. Further information on this determination and reasons for it can be read within the SEA/HRA Screening Report. A Draft SEA Environmental Report and Draft HRA Appropriate Assessment are being consulted on alongside the Draft Masterplan.