Arc planning was initially approached to review the Draft S106 that had been drawn up following the granting of a planning permission for commercial (B1 Office) redevelopment of the site. A thorough examination of the agreement and review of guidance revealed a number of items that were not justified. A revised S106 agreement has now been issued, resulting in significant financial savings for the client.
Arc planning have recently completed a sequential test exercise to identify a suitable and available site for the Nishkam School West London. Working for the Education Funding Agency alongside MACE project management, the process involved a full demonstration of educational need, key site requirements and criteria and a search and assessment of over 200 sites within the Borough of Hounslow. The process was undertaken via a formal Planning Performance Agreement which enabled sign off and agreement of each stage with Hounslow Borough Council.
NSWL is a Sikh ethos, multi-faith school for boys and girls aged 4-19. Work has now progressed to more detailed site feasibility and it is hoped that the school will open a nursery, primary, secondary and sixth form in the next two years.
If you would like assistance on a sequential test or school projects, please contact Chris on 07534138851.
A further round of planning reforms involving, among other measures, changes to the section 106 and compulsory purchase regimes and the arrangements for handling nationally significant infrastructure projects were announced in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement.
The Treasury’s Autumn Statement said the government aims to ensure that the “principle of development need only be established once, to give greater certainty and allow locally supported development to proceed more quickly”. This suggests a possible return to the old “red line” outline applications, which established the principle of a specified land use with little more than a red line around a site. Given the need to provide sufficient technical data for any application to establish acceptability of a proposal and EIA requirements this appears to be a little difficult to revert back to.
Section 106 measures could include new guidance and consultation on a faster process for finding agreement, the Autumn Statement said. The government added that it will think about setting timescales to complete agreements and seek improved transparency on using section 106.
As part of the Build up to the chancellor’s Autumn Statement, The Infrastructure Plan 2014 (NIP 14) was published on 2 December 2014. https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/381884/2902895_NationalInfrastructurePlan2014_acc.pdf
The NIP lists the government’s ‘pipeline’ of projects in the energy, transport, flood defence, waste, water and communications sectors, including the 40 major infrastructure projects that are its highest priority. There are a total of 550 projects and programmes in the updated pipeline with a combined capital value of £413bn
The NIP also includes proposals for compulsory purchase reforms which will be consulted on next spring, with the aim of bringing forward more brownfield land for development. Proposals will be brought forward, to ensure that the principle of development ‘need only be established once’ for locally-supported development. Section 106 negotiations are also to be speeded up with consultation on a faster process for reaching agreement and consideration given to introducing timescales for finalising obligations.
Accompanied by a Written Ministerial Statement, new Planning Practice Guidance (PPG) on planning obligations seeks to stimulate house building by tackling the ‘disproportionate burden’ of developer contributions on small scale developers, custom and self-builders. It introduces a threshold of 10 units or less, below which affordable housing contributions should not be sought; ‘tariff-style’ planning obligations should not be used for pooled funds for wider infrastructure needs either.
In response to concerns raised by England’s National Parks, LPAs in National Parks and AONBs ‘may choose’ to apply a lower threshold of 5 units or less.
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