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1.4 - Planning for the Housing and Jobs that the Borough Needs: The Location of the New Development

What the Government say:

Local plan image 1.4“Local planning authorities should positively seek opportunities to meet the development needs of their area”[1]

“Every effort should be made objectively to identify and then meet the housing, business and other development needs of an area, and respond positively to wider opportunities for growth”[2]

“Local planning authorities should “boost significantly the supply of housing”[3]

“Local planning authorities should work collaboratively with other bodies to ensure that strategic priorities across local boundaries are properly coordinated and clearly reflected in individual Local Plans. Joint working should enable local planning authorities to work together to meet development requirements which cannot wholly be met within their own area”[4]

What the Borough’s Local Plan needs to do:

The Local Plan will need to reflect the outcomes of joint working with other councils and stakeholders in Leicester and Leicestershire to ensure that the Borough plays its part in meeting the need for new development across the whole area.

The Local Plan will need to include a growth strategy that identifies the main areas of growth in the Borough, for example town centre and previously used land first. The Plan will need to determine the most appropriate and sustainable locations for new homes, jobs and other development, taking account of all forms of existing and proposed infrastructure, such as roads, schools and health facilities.

The Local Plan will need to identify land in the Borough where new housing development can take place. A recent study has shown that 95 new homes will need to be provided each year in the Borough up to 2036 (or 100 new homes up to 2031)[5]. This figure may increase if other councils in Leicester and Leicestershire do not have sufficient land to meet their own need and if it is identified that there is the capacity to provide for it in the Borough of Oadby and Wigston.

We also need to consider whether there is a need to provide land for new jobs such as shops, factories and business units. We intend to do some further work to understand if this is necessary and if so, how much.

We need to decide what land to ‘allocate’ for these various uses and in particular consider the balance between the amount of greenfield land and brownfield land (land which has had a previous use) that is identified.

We need to ensure that sufficient local public services are in place and that roads and public transport have the capacity to meet the needs of more people living in the Borough.

The Current Situation:

Since 2006 we have had in place a strategy to build as much new development as possible on land that has been previously used. It also reflects a previously agreed strategy across Leicester and Leicestershire to focus new development in urban areas and on large greenfield sites adjoining urban areas. These are known as ‘sustainable urban extensions’, none of which need to be provided in the Borough. As a result of this strategy, currently 90 new homes are required to be built in the Borough each year between 2006 and 2026 (a total of 1,800 homes)[6]. In addition, new land has had to be made available to meet the need of business and enterprise.

In order to meet these needs we identified opportunities to re-use sites for new development across the Borough, but particularly in Wigston, Oadby[7] and South Wigston[8] town centres whilst at the same time aiming to improve the quality of the towns and the range of facilities that are available there.

However, because there is insufficient brownfield land available in the Borough to accommodate all of the current development needs we identified an area of greenfield land to the south east of Wigston where 450 homes and up to 3.5 hectares of land for businesses and industry can be built[9]. This is known as a ‘Direction for Growth’. In 2013 Barratt Homes and David Wilson Homes prepared a ‘masterplan’ to show how this could be achieved. outline planning permission was granted in April 2014[10]. The masterplan also showed the potential to build more than 450 homes and that if this was the case, the opportunity to build new community facilities, for example, a primary school.

We have currently identified that only appropriate development should take place at Kilby Bridge, such as small scale leisure, tourism and canal based development, given that this is the only rural settlement located in the Borough.

[1] National Planning Policy Framework (paragraph 14); March 2012

[2] National Planning Policy Framework (paragraph 17); March 2012

[3] National Planning Policy Framework (paragraph 47); March 2012

[4] National Planning Policy Framework (paragraph 179); March 2012

[5] Leicester and Leicestershire Strategic Housing Market Assessment (Tables 84 and 85); June 2014

[6] Oadby and Wigston Core Strategy Policy 1; September 2010

[7] Oadby and Wigston Town Centres Area Action Plan; September 2013

[8] South Wigston Regeneration Masterplan; May 2008

[9] Oadby and Wigston Core Strategy Policy 1; September 2010

[10] Subject to Section 106 Agreement

Planning for Homes to meet the Needs of the Community

The Challenges for the Future

Quick Questions

Detailed Questions

The Council will need to continue to collaborate with other councils and stakeholders in Leicester and Leicestershire to agree where development needs are to be met, particularly if  it is found that a local planning authority cannot meet its development needs within its own area.

The Local Plan will need to set out how many homes need to be built in the Borough and identify a range of sites on which they can be built in order to ensure flexibility. This will ensure that homes are built continuously and consistently each year. The sites are likely to include a range of greenfield land and brownfield land. A number of sites are already know to the Council[12] and these will taken into account when considering the ‘reasonable options’.

The Local Plan will need to set out how much land is required in order to reflect the number of jobs in the Borough, in particular jobs related to the business industry, commercial and warehousing sectors.  

The Borough is small in terms of the land area that it covers and the opportunities to identify land for new development are often limited. However, the Council is required to prepare a plan that meets the development needs of the Borough.

The location of the Borough, adjacent to Leicester, means that there is a strong relationship between the two areas in terms of where people, live, work and access sporting and leisure facilities.

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