Plans to find sites for nearly 3,500 homes across Braintree district in the next decade have been dismissed as inadequate by critics.
Braintree Council has identified locations for future housing developments as part of its Local Development Framework (LDF).
To meet Government building targets, 3,443 homes should be provided by the year 2026.
But angry residents believe the council has not made plans to improve roads, transport options and facilities accordingly.
George Boyd-Ratcliff, of Maldon Road, Hatfield Peverel, accused the council of planning to build houses without the necessary infrastructure.
Council leader Graham Butland said the development of Great Notley over the past 20 years was an example of infrastructure arriving gradually.
He said: “You will not get schools built until the houses are there because there is no demand until we have houses built, so there will be a time lag inevitably with some of the infrastructure.
“But you won’t get these significant improvements unless we get some fairly significant developments.
“The odd house here or there isn’t going to bring forward enough resources to make a significant difference.
“Infrastructure comes, but it comes at a price and that is more housing.”