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Council meeting on Local Plan

Report summary & information for people attending the Monday 11 December, 7pm meeting at the Hilton at the Ageas

Page last updated at 08 December 2017 at 16:29

Meeting of the Council to consider the latest report on The Local Plan

On Monday 11 December at 7pm a meeting of Eastleigh Borough Council will be held at the Hilton at Ageas Bowl. The purpose of this meeting is for Councillors to consider the Local Plan. Below are all the key facts about the Plan and the meeting. If you wish to see the full report this can also be found on our website www.eastleigh.gov.uk/localplan

Report Summary:

Government requires each Local Planning Authority to produce a Local Plan for its area. Since 2015 Eastleigh Borough Council has been working towards the preparation of a Local Plan for the period 2016 – 2036. The Local Plan sets out the policies and plans to guide future development within Eastleigh Borough up to 2036. It will be the statutory document against which individual planning applications are determined.  The Local Plan therefore has a key role in shaping the future of the Borough.

The government has set very challenging housing targets for all planning authorities and housing continues to be a key priority. It is the role of the Local Plan to identify key locations for this development, together with the infrastructure and services needed to support new and existing communities, and identify areas which will be protected from development. The Local Plan sets out policies to guide the right type of development to meet the Borough’s needs over the next two decades.

Over the 20 years of the plan there is a need to deliver around 14,600 new homes in the Borough.  About 7,700 have already been permitted. Therefore sites have had to be identified for the remaining 6,900. 

Previously used land known as ‘brownfield sites’ are the preferred locations, however, studies have shown that such sites that exist in the borough are not all suitable for housing and are simply not big enough to accommodate what is needed. Therefore new ‘greenfield’ locations have had to be identified. Around 1,700 homes can be delivered on new smaller sites. The Local Plan therefore sets out an approach to help meet the remaining need or around 5,200 homes, through planning for a new settlement which follows the principles of garden villages.

This approach is recommended by the National Planning Policy Framework  (NPPF), which sets out national planning guidance for Local Plan-making and decision-taking. The principle of concentrating some development within Strategic Growth area(s), and technical work (including master-planning) has been commissioned in order to ensure that this approach is deliverable and provides Eastleigh Borough with an  with an high quality development that helps the Borough meet its future growth needs in a sustainable way. A number of options have been tested and in July 2017 the Council stated its preference for ‘Option B and C’, this continues to be the recommended option  as it is the only site that can viably deliver the scale of sustainable development and infrastructure needed in the Borough.

This Local Plan is informed by a range of evidence and technical background studies, some of which are being finalised. When the Local Plan is published for consultation it will incorporate the findings of all the evidence and all the studies will be publicly available.

What is delegated authority?

At the meeting on 11 December all Councillors will be asked to consider the report. This is a public meeting and there will be opportunity for people to speak and give their views, this is all part of the information that Councillors will consider before taking a decision.

As there is still some technical information outstanding it is not possible for Councillors to approve a final Local Plan on 11 December as this can only be done with all the evidence in place. Therefore a recommendation is being made that Councillors vote to give ‘delegated authority’ to the Chief Executive to give final approval to the plan. This will include the inclusion of outstanding studies and finalised wording of the plan so formal public consultation can take place before finally submitting to the Planning Inspectorate.

This recommendation is being made on the basis that at this stage officers are confident that all the evidence so far supports the approach set out in the plan and believe that the remaining evidence is unlikely to alter this. If however the remaining evidence does shed new light on issues and would not be in line with the current approach, the Plan would be brought back to Councillors for a decision.

What happens next?

With delegated authority officers are able to continue working on gathering all the outstanding evidence and assessing this in line with the approach of the Local Plan. Work can also continue on involving residents and businesses in helping shape what the plan sets out to deliver through working with Master Planners.

This continued progress will ensure the Council has a Local Plan that is ready for the formal public consultation and subsequent submission to the Planning Inspectorate. It is important that each of these are now delivered in line with the published timescale set out in our ‘Local Development Scheme’. This is something that all Planning Authorities are required to publish and it is against this that Government measures progress, and can take action to intervene if we are not delivering a Local Plan in a timely fashion.

How can I speak at the meeting?

Any member of the public has the opportunity to speak, but ask that you register to do so as early as possible and prior to the start of the meeting. There will be a table at the meeting at which you can register to speak prior to the meeting.  You can also pre-register by emailing democraticservices@eastleigh.gov.uk or telephone 023 8068 8342

To make the meeting run as smoothly as possible, some information is provided below which we hope you’ll find helpful:

Car parking arrangements

You will be directed by parking marshals to Car Parks 1 and 2. Parking will not be available in the hotel car park, except for disabled visitors, as hotel parking spaces are reserved for hotel guests only. There will be a short walk to the Hilton at the Ageas hotel from these car parks. Please be aware that these car parks are on an incline.

If you are blue badge holder, please display your badge in your windscreen on arrival so that the car parking marshals can direct you to an appropriate space.   

Arriving at the meeting

The doors will open at 6:30pm. Signage will direct you to the meeting which is being held in the Ballroom (which has a capacity of 700). The meeting will start at 7pm prompt.  Members of the public will be asked to wait in the Ballroom foyer until the doors open.