London Plan Inspector – 6,600 Homes Per Annum Overspill Needed Outside London

Report here

I should add this is a minimum as the inspector has not calculated the difference between the Liverpool rate and the Sedgefield rate.

Worth reading, not least for the horrible legal mess from outdated law on soundness and duty to cooperate that results.  Of course the London plan is pre the relevent acts however the inspector finds:

-As a matter of policy not law the London plan must conform to the soundness tests of the NPPF

-The DTC does not apply as a to a planning authority but as to a body assisting other in plan making (but this is not fatal to soundness as the London Plan is not a development plan) – but err the DTC is not a soundness test (other than doubling up under the positively prepared test) but a prior legal test under  Section 20(7)(C) of the 2004 Act (so the issue is fatal to the power of an inspector to find soundness not fatal to soundness) – confused – you will be.  The plan was found not to have met the duty with regards to waste disposed of outside London but as said this was not fatal.  However of course this prevents any and every London borough from adopting local plans as these must contain waste policies which must be conform with the London Plan and meet the DTC outside London.

The sooner we scrap the archaic legislation governing the SDS and put it on a level planing field to development plans the better.

The key conclusion on housing

Table 3.1 of the FALP sets targets for the London Boroughs which total 42,389 dpa, around 6,600 dpa short of what is necessary to meet objectively assessed need over 20 years. The Mayor expressed confidence at the hearings that; by maximising opportunities in town centres, on surplus Strategic Industrial Land (SIL) and in Opportunity Areas, 49,000 dwellings a year could be granted planning permission but was unwilling to commit to increasing the target.

However, in order to be in general conformity …Boroughs need only meet their individual targets. In the absence of any clear guidance as to exactly how and where the additional 6,600 dpa will be found it is difficult to see how a housing target in a local plan would not be in general conformity if it made provision for the figure in Table 3.1 and no more. There is no mechanism in the FALP to indicate how the 6,600 dpa would be apportioned or distributed. Without this I do not see how the Mayor can guarantee the delivery of the additional 6,600 dpa necessary to meet the identified need….

The targets set in Table 3.1 will not provide sufficient housing to meet objectively assessed need and I am not persuaded that the FALP can ensure that the additional 6,600 dpa will be delivered. Nor do I consider that the Mayor can rely on paragraph 47 of the NPPF or the duty to co-operate to make London Boroughs provide more. It is not enough to grant planning permissions, homes have to be built and the target rate of 42,000 dpa is significantly higher than has been achieved since 2004 and the boom years before the recession.

The evidence before me strongly suggests that the existing London Plan strategy will not deliver sufficient homes to meet objectively assessed need.

The Mayor has committed to a review of the London Plan in 2016 but I do not consider that London can afford to wait until then and recommend that a review commences as soon as the FALP is adopted in 2015 (IRC3). In my view, the Mayor needs to explore options beyond the existing philosophy of the London Plan. That may, in the absence of a wider regional strategy to assess the options for growth and to plan and co-ordinate that growth, include engaging local planning authorities beyond the GLA’s boundaries in discussions regarding the evolution of our capital city.

What does ‘beyond the existing philosophy of the London Plan’ Startegic Green Belt Review within Greater London and further loss of employment land within London clearly.  The mayor connot resist tghis and expect out of London authorities to cooperate on a Brum like regional planning exercise.

So now what for ROSE authorities?  Every EIP of their local plans will now hear that they must contribute to the overspill need as required under the NPPF.  If a Green Belt authority that can use the new guidance to say that they don’t have to meet need in full.  They will have a hard time fdoing so unless they have conducted a strategic Green Belt review objectively saying they have no sites not meeting Green Belt purposes.  So the need simply gets shifted to outside the Green Belt – and its huge.  More planning stasis under the conservatives as these authorities like those around Brum now cant even put a figure on what their five year supply should be.


2 thoughts on “London Plan Inspector – 6,600 Homes Per Annum Overspill Needed Outside London

  1. Pingback: Most of the Solution to the Housing Crisis Lies Outside the Green Belt – A Response to Martin Wolf | Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

  2. Pingback: Boris Sticks Head in the Sand on London Green Belt Review | Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

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