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Comment

Evidence Base

Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment (HELAA) (December 2017)

Representation ID: 16681

Received: 27/03/2018

Respondent: Bidwells

Representation:

Specific comments made in respect of the HELAA assessment of site GNLP0135, Wood Hall Hethersett - in particular where the site is Amber rated for constraints and impacts:
Access, Transport and Roads: Further technical advice would be sought to detail the improvements required, which could be delivered as part of any development.
Historic Environment and Townscapes: The site falls within the land associated with Wood Hall, which with its attached Garden Wall are both Grade II Listed. It is anticipated that the design of any residential development can be delivered in a manner that enhances heritage assets on site, informed by an appropriate Heritage Impact Assessment.

Full text:

In response to the above consultation, we would like to take this opportunity on behalf of our client, to further promote a site for residential development. We strongly recommend that land at Wood Hall, Hethersett should be allocated for residential development of an unspecified number. The site is considered to be entirely deliverable, and capable of making a contribution towards satisfying the Councils' housing needs during the period to 2036 by developing in a highly sustainable location. In accordance with the National Planning Policy Framework's (NPPF) definition of 'deliverable', set out in footnote 11 to paragraph 47, the site represents a suitable location for development now, is available immediately, is achievable with a realistic prospect of housing being delivered on the site, and is viable. These points are addressed in further detail below.

Assessment of Deliverability
Suitable
The site totals 1.98 hectares, and lies within the grounds of Wood Hall. The site falls outside of, but is immediately adjacent to the Development Boundary, and was submitted as part of the initial 'Call for Sites' consultation in 2016. The suitability of the site in terms of planning constraints has been assessed within the Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment (HELAA). The summary below addresses the points raised within the HELAA Assessment of the site:
● Access, Transport and Roads: Amber rated. The HELAA outlines that whilst there is existing access available to the site, access to/ from the B1172 is not sufficient and would require improvements. Further technical advice would be sought to detail the improvements required, which could be delivered as part of any development.
● Accessibility to Services: Green rated. The HELAA Assessment recognises that the site has footpath links to a range of local services.
● Utilities Capacity, Utilities Infrastructure, Contamination and Ground Stability: All Green rated.
● Flood Risk: Green rated. The site is situated within Flood Zone 1.
● Significant Landscapes: Green rated. Residential development in this location is not anticipated to have any impact upon significant landscapes.
● Historic Environment and Townscapes: Both Amber rated. The site falls within the land associated with Wood Hall. Wood Hall and attached Garden Wall are both Grade II Listed. It is anticipated that the design of any residential development on site can be delivered in a manner that enhances heritage assets on site, informed by an appropriate Heritage Impact Assessment.
● Biodiversity and Geodiversity: Green rated. A large area of the site is covered by a Tree Preservation Order (SN125). The TPO is situated to the North, West and South of Wood Hall,
and includes various species. The preservation of this TPO will be factored into any planning application. Substantial works have been consented to SN125 in recent years, with the felling of 16 trees on site permitted in accordance with application ref: 2014/0045/TPO, and the felling of 9 trees consented in 2010 (2009/2021/TPO).
● Open space and GI: Green rated. Residential development on site will not result in the loss of open space. Green infrastructure within the site will be retained wherever possible as part of any development.
● Market Attractiveness, Compatibility with Neighbouring Uses: Both Green rated. The site is situated within a desirable residential area, with excellent connectivity to Norwich and the wider area.

Available
The site is available for development.

Achievable
The site contains a large TPO, and falls within the grounds of a Listed Heritage Asset. However, the site is well-related to the local context, and would form a desirable location for residential development.
Additionally, the extensive works to the TPO in recent years indicates that it should not preclude development, and can be incorporated within any development. This is informed by the Green HELAA rating for Biodiversity and Geodiversity. Therefore, it is not anticipated that any constraints on site would preclude the delivery of residential development in the Plan period to 2036.
Viable
Development of the site for residential uses is considered viable, taking into consideration the various policy requirements in relation to matters such as affordable housing provision and CIL contributions.
Further evidence on viability can be provided on a strictly private and confidential basis, should this be deemed necessary.

Summary
As outlined above, the site is suitable, available, achievable and viable, and is therefore deliverable. On this basis, the site should be taken forward as an allocation for residential development in the emerging Local Plan, and would represent sustainable development.
The site's key planning constraints, namely heritage assets and the tree protection order, can work to frame residential development on site. The size of the site in relation to the local area lends itself to a residential development in a sustainable location, which would be achievable in the medium-term.

To conclude, the allocation of this site for residential development will engender a high-quality residential development that is exceptionally well-related to the local context.

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