Cambridgeshire Local Plan Watch - Spring 2023
Cambridge continues to be a magnet for R&D development of the highest order. The Councils recognise this and the importance of it, but the debate continues as to whether the real requirement remains above that currently set to be planned for.
Greater Cambridge Joint Local Plan continues through its plan-making process. The next formal consultation round (Reg 18) is earmarked for Autumn 2023. Adoption of the Plan will be no earlier than 2026, if not 2027.
There remains to be a strong and consistent demand for new R&D floorspace which is driving strong investment into the city. The discussion will continue as to how much the Local Plans should embrace and work with this demand or to try and supress it. There is so much good that can flow from some of the best, most sustainable commercial developments in the country. The growing ask is for the Authorities to embrace this opportunity and use this moment to Plan for good growth. The known demand is already suggesting it is beyond the economic growth scenario underpinning the emerging Joint Local Plan.
The other focus is around climate change. A growing sense that there needs to be a progressive and different approach to policy to achieve different developments and outcomes to those we have seen and so meaningfully push towards a net-zero carbon place.
Water is a leading topic and the availability of potable water. The focus is on the Water Authorities and the Water Resources Management Plan to deliver a much-needed strategic solution, but alongside it has heightened the expectation for individual developments to do more to limit their draw on the water supply.
The Combined Authority and Greater Cambridge Partnership continue to press ahead with their programme of sustainable transport infrastructure. Some projects are now delivered, but there are many in consultation and committed to for delivery. A coordinated plan has the greatest potential for a sustainable place, underpinned by sustainable travel.
Five Year Land Supply
The Housing Delivery Test latest figures do not give any immediate opportunities in the area, a product of earlier five year housing supply deficits giving way to developments that are now coming through the system, allied alongside a long-awaited strategy for new settlements to deliver new homes.
For detail on emerging Local Plan position in Cambridgeshire please click on the map below.