Welcome to the December 2017 Planning Policy newsletter, which keeps you updated about the work of Reigate & Banstead Borough Council’s Policy Team and future public consultations.
In this issue we cover:
- Development Management Plan (DMP) - the forthcoming publicity period
- Brownfield Register - new country-wide recording system now in place
- Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment - update
Development Management Plan
The Planning Policy Team has been working hard to progress the Development Management Plan for Member decision to meet our commitment to submit the Plan for independent examination by the end of March 2018. There has been a considerable amount of detailed evidence to assemble and digest, as well as considering the comments and suggestions we received during the previous consultation on the Plan. The proposed plan was approved for publication by the Full Council meeting on 14 December 2017.
The Development Management Plan follows on from the adopted Core Strategy (2014) by giving more detail on site allocations for housing, employment and the necessary supporting infrastructure including roads, schools and healthcare facilities until 2027. It also considers some new opportunities and planning policy requirements which have arisen since the adoption of the Core Strategy.
There will now be a period of publicity for the plan before it is submitted to government for examination by an independent Inspector – this is known as Regulation 19. Publication provides the opportunity for residents, organisations, businesses and other interested parties to see what the council considers is now a ‘sound’ plan and for the comments made on the Plan to be passed on to be considered by an Inspector in the Examination – later in 2018.
Respondents are encouraged to try to focus their comments on whether or not the proposed plan complies with the National Planning Policy Framework and is ‘sound’ (see box below), but there are no restrictions on you making comments on any relevant planning topic to draw to the attention of the Inspector.
This is also the opportunity for anyone who wishes to participate in the Public Hearings to register their interest. Appearances at the Hearings are subject to the Inspector who manages the Examination and selects the topics and appearances at the Hearings.
We believe, with the evidence behind us, the consultation already carried out and our working with adjoining councils, that the DMP is ‘sound’ and legally compliant. Now you have the chance to have your say. This is your opportunity to support the Plan as it stands or to inform the Independent Inspector where you feel these matters can be improved.
The publicity period will run from 5 January to 16 February 2018
We will email you with details on how to respond.
Checking to ensure a Plan is “Sound” (National planning Policy Framework para 182)
- Positively prepared – the plan is prepared based on a strategy which seeks to meet objectively assessed development and infrastructure requirements, including unmet requirements from neighbouring authorities where it is reasonable to do so and consistent with achieving sustainable development
- Justified – the plan is the most appropriate strategy, when considered against the reasonable alternatives, based on proportionate evidence
- Effective – the plan is deliverable over its period and based on effective joint working on cross-boundary strategic priorities
- Consistent with national policy – the plan will enable the delivery of sustainable development in accordance with the policies in the Framework
New Brownfield Register
New government regulations require the Council to maintain a Register of Brownfield Land that is suitable for residential development from 31 December 2017 onwards, to help encourage the development of these previously developed sites. The 2018 Register has now been published and can be viewed at our Housing Evidence webpage.
The Register comprises Part 1, which is a comprehensive list of all brownfield sites in the borough that are considered to be suitable, available, and achievable as housing development. Part 2 of the Register relates to a new regulatory category known as planning permission in principle (PIP). This would be an alternative way of obtaining planning permission which separates the consideration of matters of principle for a proposed development from the technical detail of the development.
Part 2 of the Register is optional and the Council has decided to only produce Part 1 at this time. The Register is to be reviewed annually and at other times when appropriate e.g. when a new development plan document is adopted.
For sites to be considered for entry to Part 1, they must:
- Be suitable - the land has planning permission for housing-led development, has been allocated in a Local Plan or is considered appropriate for such development by the Council
- Be available - there is no impediment to development in terms of either ownership issues or legal constraints on the land
- Be achievable - the land is likely to be developed within 15 years of being entered on the register
- Meet the definition of previously developed land in the National Planning Policy Framework
- Be at least 0.25 hectares or capable of supporting at least 5 dwellings
If you would like to view the brownfield register or to consider submitting a site you know in a future brownfield register, please visit our page on Housing Evidence.
Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment
National Planning Practice Guidance now requires local planning authorities to produce a Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment (HELAA) to support the preparation of local plans. The HELAA includes sites considered for potential housing, employment and retail uses and evaluates them for their realistic availability, suitability and achievability (including likely economic viability). This is required to inform the preparation of development plans about potential supply of sites and the delivery of plan objectives.
To inform the Regulation 19 Development Management Plan consultation, HELAA 2017 has been prepared based upon information previously submitted to the Council. The Council is in the process of contacting all those who previously submitted sites to notify them of the HELAA publication and to ask for further information to inform an updated HELAA (to be published in 2018). The Council maintains an “open” Call for Sites and would welcome the submission of new sites to be included within the HELAA 2018.
Previously only housing sites were evaluated - known in the National Planning Policy Framework 2012 as the Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA).
Where applicable, sites which have been promoted through the HELAA Call for Sites and meet the Government’s criteria will be included within the Brownfield Land Register.
Keep in contact
What do you think of our newsletter? What should we cover in the future?
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Please feel free to contact the Planning Policy Team at:
Tel: 01737 276 178
Address: Planning Policy,
Places and Planning
Reigate & Banstead Borough Council,
Town Hall, Castlefield Road, Reigate RH2 0SH.
Best Wishes for the Season!