Policy S/NS: Existing new settlements

DRAFT version for various committee meetings.

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What will this policy do?

Confirm that the three new settlements of Northstowe, the new town north of Waterbeach, and Bourn Airfield new village, will continue to be developed during the period of the new Local Plan and beyond. Policies will provide a context for their development.

Proposed policy direction

The Local Plan will carry forward the existing allocations for the following new settlements in the 2018 South Cambridgeshire Local Plan:

  • NS/3 and SS/5 Northstowe (pdf)
  • SS/6 Land north of Waterbeach (pdf)
  • SS/7 Bourn Airfield (pdf)

Maps showing the boundaries for these allocations can be found at the end of this document.

The detailed policy wording will be reviewed as may be appropriate in the new Local Plan, including amending capacity assumptions where necessary to reflect planning permissions. The Northstowe Area Action Plan will remain part of the development plan, although standards adopted in the new Local Plan will apply to future applications. The Supplementary Planning Documents for Land north of Waterbeach and Bourn Airfield will be carried forward.

Our evidence says that it is reasonable to assume that annual delivery rates at Northstowe and Waterbeach will be higher than so far relied on, meaning that more of the planned homes will be completed in the plan period, with less to follow after 2041.

Notwithstanding, the updated policies will provide positive opportunities for enhanced development densities around transport hubs, whilst taking account of other policies in the plan. This could result in additional development over and above that currently permitted but at this stage no further development is assumed in the housing supply from this potential additional source.

Why is this policy needed?

To provide a context for the ongoing development of existing planned new settlements during the plan period. Early phases of Northstowe are under construction. The new settlements on Land north of Waterbeach and at Bourn Airfield have gained, or the Council has resolved to grant, planning permission. However, for all three new settlements there will be detailed stages of the planning process happening over years to come. The policy context provided by the 2018 Local Plan is still needed.

The new settlements will be built over the life of the new plan, and well beyond. During that time as sustainable transport links are completed and improved, there may be opportunities to increase densities in areas with good access to these transport hubs, and the plan should be supportive of this, subject to other policies in the plan.

What consultation have we done on this issue?

We did not ask any specific questions in the First Conversation on this issue. However, we did ask about creating further new settlements as part of the development strategy, and a number of comments highlighted that we should focus on completing these existing new settlements. We received some proposals in the call for sites for further new settlements, but as set out the development strategy (S/DS) we do not think further new settlements should be part of the development strategy

What alternatives did we consider?

No policy, rely on district wide policies for these areas – rejected, as it is considered that area specific detail needs to be included in the new plan.

Supporting evidence studies and topic papers

  • Greater Cambridge Local Plan: Topic paper 1: Strategy

Existing policies in adopted 2018 Local Plans

Northstowe Area Action Plan 2007 (all policies)

South Cambridgeshire Local Plan 2018

  • Policy SS/5: Northstowe Extension
  • Policy SS/6: Waterbeach New Town
  • Policy SS/7: New Village at Bourn Airfield

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