Niobe

Please note: You only need to register / login if you wish to make representations.

Draft Local Plan Review


Previous Chapter || Next Chapter 7

7. Providing Homes for All

Introduction

176. A well-functioning housing market is essential for Solihull to meet its full potential as an area which is a good place to live and for its future economic success.  It is also recognised that the Borough is not an isolated housing market and that it operates as part of a wider housing market area (HMA) based on Birmingham and 13 surrounding authorities.

177. Good housing is essential for social, environmental and economic wellbeing. A broad range of housing of different types and sizes, of different values and tenures are required to create and maintain mixed and balanced communities.

178. Solihull provides some of the best housing in the West Midlands, with values consistently above the regional average. It is a strong attractor of households, given its location and connectivity, the strength of the local economy and local employment opportunities.

179. These advantages are enhanced by the quality of the Borough's residential environments, and particularly strong offers on retail and education. However, there are areas of the Borough, particularly North Solihull, where there is a need to provide more attractive choices of home and community environments, to encourage economically active and independent households to stay.

180. More housing is needed because the number of households in the Borough is increasing. Population is projected to increase by around 22,900 (2014-2033); more people are staying single longer; more couples and families are separating and people are living longer and continuing to live in their own home, often alone. The number of households is projected to increase by 11,600 over the period 2014 to 2033. It is expected that by 2033 around 31% of all households will be single people including those over pensionable age, people with disabilities and households re-forming. Many of these households are likely to require affordable rather than market housing (SHMA 2016).

181. The number of households represented by the over 75s is projected to increase by 7,000 between 2014 and 2033 to comprise 22% of all the Borough's households. This leads to market demand for specialist and supported housing together with homes which can provide opportunities for households to 'downsize', thereby releasing family housing for resale and re-letting.

182. There is a Borough wide shortage of homes which are affordable and homes which are suitable for older people and specially designed homes for people with learning and physical disabilities. This leads to a strong local Borough need for family-sized affordable rented housing and intermediate tenure homes together with both smaller and lower cost market housing.  It is important that housing of the right type is delivered to meet these needs and the Council will seek to achieve this through use of a range of approaches, including Supplementary Planning Documents and how it brings forward and disposes of its own land[24].

183. Affordable housing need is exceptionally high as Solihull has one of the most severe affordability problems in the West Midlands Region. The shortage of affordable housing is particularly acute in parts of the Mature Suburbs and the Rural Area. Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) data shows that the ratio of lower quartile house prices to lower quartile earnings in 2015 was 8.45. This is notably higher than the average for England (7.02).

184. The provision of new homes should address the needs of all types of household, including families, single people, older and disabled people and those who want to build their own home. New homes should be affordable by those who are seeking a first home and those who wish to move home. There must be increased provision of affordable housing for rent and intermediate tenure to meet the growing needs of households which cannot afford market solutions.  In the North Solihull Regeneration Area there is a limited range of homes for owner-occupation, particularly larger homes, which will meet the aspirations of local households.

185. The Council aims to ensure that everyone has the opportunity of access to a decent and safe home within a quality living environment, by:

  • identifying deliverable housing land supply for fifteen years from the date the Plan will be adopted and ensuring that at least a five-year supply of housing land is available for development;
  • prioritising locations for development that will best contribute to building sustainable, linked, mixed use and balanced communities;
  • ensuring the provision of an appropriate mix, type and tenure of housing on sites in a range of locations which meet the needs of Solihull's residents, particularly needs for affordable housing, including Starter Homes, and supported housing, on a Borough wide basis;
  • promoting opportunities for self and custom build.

Policy P4 Meeting Housing Needs

AAffordable Housing

The Council will require developers of allocated and unidentified sites to make a contribution to affordable housing on residential sites of 11 units or more, or which have a maximum combined gross floor space of more than 1,000sqm to meet the housing needs of the Borough.  Affordable housing includes social rented, affordable rented, intermediate tenure and Starter Homes, which is available at below market price or rent and which is affordable to households whose needs are not met by the market.

The Borough definition of 'affordable' is set out in a Meeting Housing Needs Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) which will be updated periodically to reflect changes in local incomes and house prices.

Contributions will be expected to be made in the form of 50% affordable dwelling units on each development site, but will take into account:

  • Site size;
  • Accessibility to local services and facilities and access to public transport;
  • The economics of provision, including particular costs that may threaten the viability of the site;
  • Whether the provision of affordable housing would prejudice the realisation of other planning objectives that need to be given priority in the development of the site;
  • The need to secure a range of house types and sizes in the locality in helping to achieve socially balanced and mixed communities; and
  • The need to achieve a successful housing development.

Where on-site provision is not feasible or viable there will be a financial contribution towards the provision of affordable housing that would not otherwise be provided, elsewhere within the Borough.

The extent of affordable housing that should be provided in relation to developments that either re-use existing buildings or include the demolition of existing buildings will be assessed according to the 'vacant building credit'.  The approach to calculating the vacant building credit is set out in the Meeting Housing Needs Supplementary Planning Document.

This policy applies to all qualifying sites across the Borough and includes Gypsy and Traveller sites.

The policy applies to all development in the 'C3' use class.  The policy will also apply to 'C2' development that provides individual self-contained units that can be counted as part of the Borough's overall housing numbers. In addition to requiring a proportion of the homes to be 'affordable', the Council will identify the tenure, mix and type of the homes and any requirements for homes to be designed to meet specific needs such as those of older or disabled people.

BRural Exceptions

The provision of affordable housing developments on green belt land to meet the local needs of households in that Parish or neighbourhood will be supported in circumstances where:

  • The development proposal is consistent with the Village, Parish or Neighbourhood Plan; or
  • There is evidence that people with a local connection to the Parish area have a housing need that cannot be met through affordable housing provision on an allocated housing site and the proposed development is supported by the Parish Council or Neighbourhood Forum.

CMarket Housing

Where the Council issues a development brief for a site this will include details of the likely profile of household types requiring market housing, e.g. multi-person, including families and children (x%), single persons (y%) and couples (z%), as identified by the latest Strategic Housing Market Assessment. In assessing the housing mix of allocated and unidentified sites, the Council will, in negotiations, have regard to:

  • Site size;
  • The existing mix of market housing and local housing demand in the area as guided by the Strategic Housing Market Assessment;
  • Accessibility to local services and facilities and access to public transport;
  • The economics of provision, including particular costs that may threaten the viability of the site;
  • The need to secure a range of house types and sizes in the locality in helping to achieve socially balanced and mixed communities; and
  • The need to achieve a successful housing development.

DSelf and Custom Housebuilding

Option 1

The Council will allocate a site(s) to provide for the requirements of Solihull's Self and Custom Housebuilding Register as required by the Housing and Planning Act.

Or

Option 2

The Council will require developers of allocated sites to make a contribution to Self and Custom Build Housing on residential sites of 100 units or more.  Contributions will be expected to be made in the form of 5% of open market dwellings in the form of Self and Custom Build Plots on each development site, but will take into account:

  • Site size;
  • Accessibility to local services and facilities and access to public transport;
  • The economics of provision, including particular costs that may threaten the viability of the site;
  • Whether the provision of self and custom build plots would prejudice the realisation of other planning objectives that need to be given priority in the development of the site;
  • The need to secure a range of house types and sizes in the locality in helping to achieve socially balanced and mixed communities; and
  • The need to achieve a successful and functional housing development.

The Council expects these plots to be offered for sale with outline planning permission, services to the boundary and access to the highway for period of 12 months to those Registered on Solihull's Self and Custom Build Housing Register.   The value of the plots will be subject to an independent valuation by a Registered Surveyor.

The mechanisms and criteria for delivery of Policy P4 will be set out in the Meeting Housing Needs Supplementary Planning Document.

Justification

Policy 4(A) - Affordable Housing

186. Policy 4 (a) is set on a Borough wide basis. This reflects the fact that needs cannot always be met where they arise, so use has to be made of the development opportunities that become available. Therefore any development may need to provide for needs arising in another part of the Borough. The only exception to this may be on rural 'exceptions' sites where housing may be reserved for those with a local connection.

187. The requirement for the provision of affordable housing is justified on the basis that Solihull has a high level of unmet housing need, as evidenced in the Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA). This is supported by official data produced by DCLG and local Borough wide data on housing need.

188. The SHMA also demonstrated a growing need for homes which are suitable for older people and those with disabilities (physical, sensory and learning). This is also evidenced by local Borough wide data and the Independent Living and Extra Care Housing Strategy.

189. The level of need for affordable housing is high in relation to the level of new provision.  Provision of affordable homes is limited by the proportion of development that takes place, and will continue to take place, on sites below the national affordable housing threshold. The site size threshold below which there is no requirement to provide affordable housing will result in many sites which could reasonably have provided affordable homes being fully developed only with market housing.

190. The affordable housing threshold adopted in the 2013 Solihull Local Plan was 0.2 hectares or 3 or more net dwellings. This threshold did not discourage development of small sites or the replacement of individual homes at the end of their lifespan, and the Council considered that it was appropriate to Solihull's local circumstances

191. The new threshold is dictated by changes to National Planning Policy Guidance and is consistent with this. Setting the threshold at developments of 11 units or more, or which have a maximum combined gross floor space of more than 1,000 sqm is justified on the basis that housing developments at and above this level should contribute to meeting the need for affordable housing.

192. Since the adoption of a 40% affordable housing target (Policy H4 in the Solihull UDP, February 2006 and Policy P4 in the Solihull Local Plan, December 2013), a wide range of privately led residential developments have made provision at this level. The implementation of the policy has had due regard to the suitability of each site and its capacity to provide affordable homes. It is therefore considered appropriate to the Borough's local circumstances.

193. Evidence of housing need from the 2016 SHMA, the higher threshold and the requirement to provide Starter Homes as a part of the affordable housing has resulted in the Council reviewing the affordable housing target. The target has been set at 50%. This reflects the requirement that 20% must be provided through Starter Homes. The remaining 30% of the affordable housing obligation will be shared as evidenced by the SHMA by rent of 22% and shared ownership of 8%.  It is anticipated that the greater value from starter homes will be able to support this approach, but further evidence will be pursued to justify this.

194. The Council recognises that provision of affordable housing will result in a cost to developers and so the implementation of this policy requires a reasonable and flexible approach, reflecting individual site characteristics. Where there are factors that could threaten the viability of developments as a result of site specific constraints or circumstances these will be considered in negotiations. However, the overall target is that 50% of all new housing built in the Borough will be affordable housing.

195. The Council is justified in adopting its definition of affordability because it provides clear guidance to developers on what is required. The definition will be based on Borough data on incomes and house prices, subject to monitoring and review.

196. The Council is justified in defining the tenure of 'affordable' homes on the basis that a spread of tenure options is required to satisfy needs and aspirations of households.

197. Most households in housing need are only able to afford to rent below market level, so the provision of homes at social rent or affordable rent is the most important aspect of affordable housing provision. In view of the greater cost to land value of rented provision, the ability to require a proportion of any affordable provision to be for rent is essential. The objective will be to maximise housing provision for those in most need whilst producing balanced communities and to secure a level and mix of provision which is viable and practicable to the developer.

198. The Council also wishes to promote opportunity for affordable home ownership through Starter Homes and shared ownership. The policy therefore provides a range of affordable housing provision.

199. The Council is justified in requiring the provision of homes which are designed to meet specific needs of older and/or disabled people (including people with learning and/or physical or sensory disabilities) because of the outstanding need for such accommodation and the relatively high cost of provision.

200. Because of the age and disability of many of those who require specialist or supported housing, the required provision is most often social or affordable rent. Insofar as this is the case on any development the provision will be part of the affordable housing requirement.

201. It is recognised that this provision can be relatively expensive to Registered Providers so a policy requirement which secures a reasonable level of provision on suitable sites is appropriate.

202. The Council is justified in requiring the on-site provision of affordable housing wherever feasible in order to maximise the provision of affordable homes on sites of all values. It is recognised that the provision of affordable housing in some parts of the Borough can present challenges to developers because of existing use values. These are often in parts of the Borough where affordable homes are in particularly short supply so insistence on on-site provision is justified to ensure that homes are provided in these locations.

203. This policy is consistent with the Government's policy that where local authorities have identified that affordable housing is required they should set policies for meeting this need on site, unless off-site provision or a financial contribution of broadly equivalent value can be robustly justified and the agreed approach contributes to the objective of creating mixed and balanced communities.

Policy 4(B) – Rural Exceptions

204. Policy 4(b) responds to the identified need in some Parish and Neighbourhood Plan areas of providing affordable housing for people with a local connection to the Parish or Neighbourhood Plan area and the importance of development in helping to sustain local community services.

205. The policy supports the provision of affordable housing where there is evidence of need that cannot be met through affordable housing provision on an allocated housing site. The provision of affordable housing developments to meet the needs of people with a local connection to the Parish or neighbourhood will be supported on green belt land. The policy will ensure that the most suitable site in the village is used as outlined in the Parish or Neighbourhood Plan. All sites will be assessed for their accessibility to services and facilities, the impact of development on the Green Belt and environmental considerations.

206. The policy is justified by the acknowledged role that providing homes for local people in these Parishes or Neighbourhood Plan areas has in supporting communities and maintaining the vitality of rural settlements through retaining population which supports local services and facilities.

Policy 4(C) – Market Housing

207. The Council is justified in requiring the mix of market housing to reflect the types of households requiring market housing to ensure that market provision reflects local Borough demand and to sustain mixed and balanced communities.

Policy 4 (D) – Self and Custom Build

208. The Council is considering how best to ensure that the needs of the self and custom build market are catered for and is seeking views through this consultation on whether all the provision ought to be made on one (or at least a small number of sites), or whether all sites of a certain threshold should make provision.  These are options 1 and 2 as set out in Policy P4 (D).

209. The Council is justified in making provision for self and custom build housing in order to comply with the Self and Custom Housebuilding Act, the Housing and Planning Act, National Planning Policy Guidance and the needs on the self-build register.

210. The Self and Custom Housebuilding Register was established in Solihull in March 2016.  As at the 30 September 2016 there were 91 people Registered.

Challenges and Objectives Addressed by the Policy

A Reducing inequalities in the Borough

B Meeting housing needs across the Borough, including the Borough's own needs and, where possible, assisting with accommodating the HMA wide shortfall.

C Sustaining the attractiveness of the Borough for people who live, work and invest in Solihull

J Improving health and well being

View Comments (130) 11. Do you agree with Policy P4?  If not why not, and what alternative would you suggest?

View Comments (97) 12. Do you agree with the level of affordable housing being sought in Policy P4?  If not why not, and what alternative would you suggest?

View Comments (47) 13. Which option for delivering self and custom housebuilding do you favour and why?  If neither, do you have any other suggestions?

Policy P5 Provision of Land for Housing

The Council will allocate sufficient land for at least 6,522 net additional homes to ensure sufficient housing land supply to deliver 15,029 additional homes in the period 2014-2033. The allocations will be part of the overall housing land supply detailed in the table below.

The annual housing land provision target is 791 net additional homes per year (2014-2033). A trajectory showing how this target will be delivered from all sources of housing land supply is shown below.  It will be subject to annual review through the AMR.

New housing will be supported on unidentified sites in accessible locations where they contribute towards meeting borough-wide housing needs and towards enhancing local character and distinctiveness. Unless there are exceptional circumstances, new housing will not be permitted in locations where accessibility to employment, centres and a range of services and facilities is poor.

The density of new housing will make the most efficient use of land whilst providing an appropriate mix and maintaining character and local distinctiveness. Higher densities will be more appropriate in the most accessible locations.

The submission version of the plan will include a phasing designation for each of the allocations.  Sites will not be released for development before they reach their specified phase, unless existing housing land supply falls below national planning policy deliverable housing land supply requirements

Justification

211. A strategic housing needs study (SHNS) for the whole HMA was undertaken in 2015.  It indicated that there is a shortfall across the area of some 37,500 dwellings over the period 2011-2031.  Under the Duty to Cooperate the Council has been working with its partners to address this shortfall.  This shortfall included 2,654 dwellings arising from Solihull as the Borough was not meeting its own needs. Whilst the outcome is yet to be finalised, a direction of travel that has received a measure of support is indicating that the Council ought to be testing, through this local plan review, the potential to accommodate a further 2,000 dwellings from the shortfall, in addition to accommodating the Borough's own needs[25].

212. As the SHNS provides a consistent basis for considering housing need in the HMA from 2011, the Council is mindful of wishing to avoid any of the housing expected to be provided in the Borough from 2011 to 2014 (the base date for this plan) being 'lost' or otherwise added to the HMA shortfall noted above.  It has therefore decided to include within its housing target an allowance of 1,184 dwellings to cover the period 2011 to 2014[26].

213. The Council's full objectively assessed need is based upon the 2014 based household projections published by DCLG in July 2016 and includes a 10% uplift due to market signals[27].  This is set out in the 2016 Strategic Housing Market Assessment.

214. The housing land provision target of 15,029 net additional dwellings (2014-2033) therefore reflects the full objectively assessed housing need (OAN) for the Borough, a contribution to the wider HMA shortfall and an allowance to ensure consistency with the SHNS for the period 2011-14.  This target has been weighed against the Borough's capacity for growth over the plan period.

215. Solihull is recognised for its high quality environment which attracts residents and investors to the sub-region. These include green infrastructure assets such as the Arden Landscape, the River Blythe SSSI, tree-lined suburbs and principal parks as well as major transport and economic assets such as UK Central, the M42 corridor and forthcoming HS2 Interchange. Growth needs to be managed at a sustainable rate so that the success of these assets are not compromised and can continue to deliver their economic and ecosystem services.

216. The proposed level of growth is significantly more than previously planned for and is a recognition that the SLP 2013 used a constrained figure. The Council is now not only seeking to accommodate its own needs, but also help to accommodate some of the shortfall occurring in the HMA.

217. This housing growth can be delivered through sites with planning permission, suitable deliverable sites identified within the Strategic Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment, locations proposed for allocation by this policy and unidentified windfall sites, predominantly within South Solihull. The following table provides an overview of housing land supply:

Solihull Housing Land Supply 2014-2033 (as of 1st April 2016)

Source

Estimated

Capacity

1 Housing completions (2014-2016)

1,385

Future Housing Land Supply:

2 Sites with planning permission (started)

795

3 Sites with planning permission (not started)

1,467

4 Sites identified in land availability assessments

286

5 Solihull Local Plan allocations without planning permission at 1st April 2016

2,640

6 Less a 10% to sites with planning permission (not started), sites identified in land availability assessments and SLP sites

-439

7 Windfall housing land supply (2018-2033)

2,250

Subtotal of above (rows 1-7)

8,384

8 Local Plan Review Proposed Sites (new allocations)

6,150

9 UK Central Hub Area

1,000

Total Estimated Capacity (rows 1-9)

15,534

218. This estimated capacity of 15,534 exceeds the requirement (15,029) by 505 dwellings.  This represents a margin of 8% compared with the number of additional dwellings being allocated through this local plan review.  This represents a cautious approach to ensure that the housing requirement figure will be met.

Windfall Housing Supply

219. Windfall housing sites are sites that will become available for residential development during the Plan period that cannot be identified now. There is compelling evidence that windfall sites consistently become available in Solihull. The NPPF introduced policy to resist inappropriate development in residential gardens; however this has been a policy objective for the Council since 2003 when the Council adopted supplementary planning guidance for such development "New Housing in Context". In any event the Local Plan windfall housing assumption is cautious in comparison to long-term past trends.  The windfall supply included in the table above amounts to 15 years' worth and is in recognition that to avoid double counting with existing permissions (that will include windfall sites), the future completions from presently unknown sites is likely to commence from 2018 onwards.

Housing Trajectory

220. To ensure that an adequate supply of housing will be available throughout the plan period consideration has been given to the likely delivery rates of both existing commitments and the proposed allocations.  Soon after the LPR is expected to be adopted (and sites released from the Green Belt are available), the level of completions is expected to be ahead of the requirement.  This is indicated in the cumulative chart indicated below.

Spatial Distribution of Housing – Phasing

221. It is recognised that the local plan review should ensure that there is a continuous supply of new housing throughout the plan period, and a particular challenge is that there are sufficient opportunities for sites to come forward early in the plan period.  However, Solihull's strong housing market characteristics could lead to the early delivery of too many sites with unsustainable infrastructure capacity and pressure for further growth in undesirable locations later in the Plan period. Supply would outstrip the Borough's demand and lead to increased migration from other parts of the West Midlands.  Therefore an element of phasing will be required and this will be explored when delivery rates from the allocated sites become clearer.

222. Phasing also has a role to play in protecting the Borough's communities from an excessive extent of construction traffic associated not only with the house building being accommodated, but also from the largest infrastructure project the Borough has accommodated in recent times in the form of HS2.  This is about 'managing the growth'.

Summary Table of Allocated Sites

223. An appendix contains a detailed schedule of the new allocated housing sites, the following table is provided as a summary.

Area[28]

Ref.

Site Name

Green Belt

Site Area (ha)

Indicative

Capacity

Balsall Common

1

Barratt's Farm

Yes

57

800

2

Frog Lane

Yes

6

150

3

Windmill Lane/Kenilworth Road

Yes

11

200

Dickens Heath

4

West of Dickens Heath (off Tythe Barn Lane, Tile House Lane and Birchy Leasowes Lane)

Yes

41

700

Fordbridge

5

Chester Road/Moorend Avenue

Yes

4

100

Hampton in Arden

6

Meriden Road

Yes

7

100

Kingshurst

7

Kingshurst Village Centre

No

4

100

Knowle

8

Hampton Road

Yes

13

300

9

South of Knowle (between Station Road, Warwick Road and Grove Road)

Yes

46

750

Meriden

10

West of Meriden (between Birmingham Road and Maxstoke Lane)

Yes

3

50

Shirley

11

TRW/The Green, The Green, Stratford Road

No

19

400

12

South of Dog Kennel Lane

Yes

42

850

13

South of Shirley (between Whitlocks End Farm and Dickens Heath Road)

Yes

30

600

Smith's Wood

14

Arran Way

No

2

50

15

Jensen House, Auckland Drive

No

4

100

Solihull

16

East of Solihull (between Lugtrout Lane and Hampton Lane)

Yes

39

650

17

Moat Lane/Vulcan Road

No

5

150

18

Sharmans Cross Road

No

3

100

Non Green Belt Sites

37

900

Green Belt Sites

299[29]

5,250

Total

336

6,150

224. These sites are indicated on a series of maps in the appendices.  At this stage it should be noted that the boundaries of the sites are not fixed and further work will be undertaken on the options to be taken forward and included in the submission version of the plan[30].  This further work will be undertaken in conjunction with the site promoters/land owners and local communities (including Parish Councils and Neighbourhood Planning Forums) and will include:

  • A clear objective/aim for what is intended to be achieved in the overall development.
  • That key site constraints have been identified (both those that are fixed (i.e. to be accommodated within the scheme (e.g. important open spaces)) and those that need to be overcome or mitigated).
  • That all the different land uses/proposals and their scale that the site is to accommodate (including dwelling capacity) have been identified (this will include key green infrastructure/open space (including, where relevant, areas of biodiversity value that are to be retained) either within the site or adjacent to it).
  • Key access and movement routes to and through the site.
  • The infrastructure that is required to make that development an attractive and sustainable location has been identified.
  • A clear phasing and delivery programme (and this may demonstrate the need for critical infrastructure to be in place before occupation of certain phases).
  • Establishing a clear and logical boundary to identify precisely the land to be released from the Green Belt (for those allocations which require land to be removed from the Green Belt).  This does not mean that all of the site will be developed as it is necessary to ensure a clear, logical and defensible boundary to the Green Belt is formed.

225. The outcome from the above will be a concept masterplan for each of the allocations that will be incorporated into the submission version of the local plan.  This will not only help to illustrate the form the development will take, but also to demonstrate its delivery.

226. It will be expected that where there are multiple ownerships involved, the concept masterplan will show a coordinated and comprehensive approach to the development of the site.  This needn't necessarily preclude a phased approach where one parcel of land or part of the site may be available for development in advance of another. 

227. The indicative capacities are currently based on:

a. Overall site area leading to a gross developable area (when physical site constraints (such as waterways, woodlands, floodplain, existing buildings to be retained) are excluded);

b. The gross developable area leading to a net developable area (where land for infrastructure such as estate roads, open space, utilities or new facilities etc. is excluded);

c. Average density of 36dph across the site, to include a mix of types, size and tenures.

228. It is recognised that the final capacities are likely to vary from these indicative numbers as the concept masterplans are advanced.  This may mean that some sites can accommodate more than currently indicated, or less; but this will be established through a design-led approach rather than relying on a crude application of a density to an overall site area.  At this stage a cautious approach to indicative capacities has been used to ensure that the final version of the plan will be able to accommodate the level of growth envisaged in Policy P5.

229. The table of allocated sites includes a number that will require land to be released from the Green Belt to enable them to be delivered.  It is considered that the scale of housing growth to be accommodated, and the lack of alternative sites that are not located in the Green Belt, provide the exceptional circumstances required to justify this approach.

230. The following table is a schedule of the SLP allocated sites which have not yet commenced development and will be retained as allocations in this review.

Ref[31].

Site Name

Site Area (ha)

Indicative

Capacity

3

Simon Digby, Chelmsley Wood

4.57

200

8

Solihull Town Centre


861[32]

9

Chelmsley Lane, Marston Green

1.96

80

11

Powergen

3.84

374[33]

10

Blythe Valley Park

12.25

950[34]

19

Riddings Hill, Balsall Common

1.61

65

24

Meriden Road, Hampton-in-Arden

2.79

110

Total

2,640

Challenges and Objectives Addressed by the Policy

A Reducing inequalities in the Borough

B Meeting housing needs across the Borough, including the Borough's own needs and, where possible, assisting with accommodating the HMA wide shortfall.

E Protecting key gaps between urban areas and settlements

H Increasing accessibility and encouraging sustainable travel

J Improving health and well being

K Protecting and enhancing our natural assets

L Water quality and flood risk

View Comments (183) 14. Do you agree that we are planning to build the right number of new homes?  If not why not, and how many do you think we should be planning to build?

View Comments (358) 15. Do you believe we are planning to build new homes in the right locations?  If not why not, and which locations do you believe shouldn't be included?  Are there any other locations that you think should be included?

View Comments (849) 16. Do you believe we have identified the infrastructure[35] required to support these developments?  If not why not?  Are there any additional facilities you believe are required, if so what are they?

Sites for Gypsy & Travellers

231. The SLP set out a need for 38 permanent pitches to 2027; the need being identified in the 2012 Gypsy & Traveller Accommodation Assessment.  The provision of pitches to meet this need was made through the Gypsy and Traveller Site Allocations Plan, adopted in December 2014.  Most of these pitches now have planning permission and have been implemented.

232. Should it be demonstrated that additional pitches are required in the future, then the criteria set out in the policy below will be used when allocating sites.

Policy P6 Provision of Sites for Gypsies and Travellers

The following criteria will be used in the allocation of future sites:

  • The size and scale of the site and the number of caravans stationed is appropriate to the size and density of the local settled community;
  • Any unacceptable adverse visual impact can be adequately minimised;
  • The site is not in an area prone to flooding;
  • Any unacceptable adverse impact on landscape or local nature conservation designations, ecology, biodiversity or the historic environment can be mitigated;
  • There is no unacceptable adverse impact on privacy and residential amenity for both site residents and neighbouring land uses;
  • The site has safe and convenient access to the highway network;
  • Local services and facilities such as schools, health facilities, fresh food and employment are accessible by walking, cycling and public transport, or it can be demonstrated that the site is sustainable in other ways.

Sites in the Green Belt will not be permitted unless other locations have been considered and then only in "very special circumstances."

Justification

233. It is recognised that Gypsies and Travellers are amongst the most socially excluded groups in society and research has consistently confirmed the link between the lack of good quality sites for Gypsies and Travellers and poor health and education. The Government and the Council acknowledge that these inequalities must be addressed, but it is crucial to ensure that the planning system is not abused and that development is located in the most appropriate locations.

234. The Council has demonstrated a positive and proactive approach to making sure that the needs of the gypsy and traveller community have been met, and it will continue to do so.  It can be demonstrated that there is an up-to-date supply of pitches to satisfy the five year requirement set out in "Planning Policy for Travellers Sites" (DCLG August 2015).  Indeed the supply is not only met, but exceeded by a considerable margin – as of 1st January 2016, the need has been met and exceeded by a further 5.8 years supply.

235. In due course, the Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment will be updated and should it demonstrate the need to provide additional pitches, either to meet the need to 2027, or beyond then, then the Council will bring forward a review of the Gypsy and Traveller Allocations Plan.  If a review of the allocations plan is necessary, then the criteria for assessing potential sites will be as set out in Policy P6.

Challenges and Objectives Addressed by the Policy

A Reducing inequalities in the Borough

B Meeting housing needs across the Borough, including the Borough's own needs and, where possible, assisting with accommodating the HMA wide shortfall.

G To maintain a supply of gypsy and traveller sites.

View Comments (31) 17. Do you agree with Policy P6?  If not why not, and what alternative would you suggest?

[24] Including, where appropriate, for uses that fall within class C2 of the Use Classes Order.

[25] This effectively means that through the housing target in this plan, the 37,500 shortfall identified in the SHNS will be reduced by some 4,600 dwellings (2,600 from the Council now accommodating all of its own needs and 2,000 as the Borough's additional contribution towards accommodating shortfall that arises within the HMA but not from within Solihull).

[26] These are the dwellings the SHNS assumes would be built in Solihull in the period 2011-14, less the number of completions in the period.

[27] This 10% uplift has also been applied to the SHNS expectations for the period 2011 to 2014.

[28] The area or settlement the allocation is adjacent to (not necessarily the ward or parish it falls within).

[29] The Borough has 11,945ha of land in the Green Belt, 299ha of land to be released for residential development amounts to 2.5%

[30] The inclusion of a particular parcel of land within the allocated area does not necessarily mean that it is to be developed.  In some instances the plans represent the area of land to be removed from the Green Belt, and to create logical defensible boundaries will mean that some existing buildings/uses that are not intended to be redeveloped will be removed from the Green Belt.

[31] Site reference number as used in the SLP.

[32] The SLP was based on 950 units coming forward in the plan period.  The updated masterplan described in an earlier chapter revises this to 861.

[33] The SLP estimated that the site would yield 130 units.  The planning application approval provides for a development that accommodates 374 units.

[34] The SLP estimated that the site would yield 600 dwellings, the current planning application proposes up to 1,000 units (750 dwellings and an extra care proposal of 250 units).

[35] This is set out under each allocation in the appendices.

Previous Chapter || Next Chapter
Having trouble using the system? Visit our help page or contact us directly.

Powered by OpusConsult