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News in brief: City deals across the UK feature in the Budget; Brownfield site to be redeveloped in Banbury

Words: Laura Edgar

A round-up of planning news: Tuesday 30 October, 2018

Budget 2018: City deals across the UK

Chancellor Philip Hammond has confirmed that a number of regions across the UK have secured city deals, including Belfast City Region and Tay Cities.

Coventry will receive funding for when it host the UK City of Culture in 2021.

The government plans to publish a refreshed Northern Powerhouse Strategy next year and has said it supports the National Infrastructure Commission’s proposal to deliver up to one million new homes in the Cambridge - Milton Keynes – Oxford arc by 2050.

More detail on the Budget, in particular city and growth deals in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, will be published on The Planner later this week.


Advisers cite huge threat to coastal communities from climate change

Up to 1.5 million properties including 1.2 million homes may be at significant risk of flood risk with more than 100,000 properties under threat from coastal erosion by the 2080s, according to government advisers.

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) warns that current approaches to protecting England’s coastal communities from flooding and erosion are not fit for purpose. A new long-term approach to coastal management is urgently needed in the face of expected impacts of climate change, it adds.

By the 2080s, in addition to properties, around 1,600km of major roads, 650km of railway lines, 92 railway stations and 55 historic landfill sites will be at risk of coastal flooding or erosion.

The committee calls on local government and the Environment Agency to work with affected communities on “realistic long-term strategies” that are rigorously implemented in local plans, regulations and projects. The new approach should be long term, based on evidence and include the views of coastal communities.

Read the full story here on The Planner.


Planners given free access to satellite images

Planning departments will have free access to the UK Space Agency’s archives of satellite images and radar data for research and development projects.

The move, announced by science minister Sam Gyimah, aims to provide an “unprecedented level of detail” of large UK cities, transport networks, national parks and energy infrastructure. The images offer sub-5m resolution with less than 15 per cent cloud cover.

Satellite data has already been used in pilot projects by Bournemouth Borough Council to identify the best locations for electric vehicle charging points, while the Environment Agency has trialled images as a tool to monitor plastic pollution off the UK’s shoreline to support clean-up operations and protect wildlife.

The data will be available for up to three years to explore what role high-resolution satellite data could have in public sector delivery.

Read the full story here on The Planner.


Johnson reveals £350m bail-out for Crossrail

The government has made a £350 million short-term loan to Transport for London for the delayed Crossrail project.

In July, rail minister Jo Johnson admitted that the project needed an extra £600 million, taking its total cost to £15.4 billion. In September, Crossrail announced the Elizabeth line will not open this December as scheduled and had been delayed until autumn 2019 “to complete the final infrastructure and extensive testing required”.

Johnson said: “As an interim measure, we are announcing that £350 million of short-term repayable financing will be made available to the mayor for the year 2018/19. This will ensure that full momentum is maintained behind Crossrail.”

Read the full story here on The Planner.


Brownfield site to be redeveloped in Banbury

Cherwell District Council’s planning committee has granted outline planning permission for a scheme that will see a disused caravan site redeveloped.

The development will be located to the west of Banbury Railway station, adjoining both the Oxford Canal and the River Cherwell.

The apartments will be a mixture of one and two-bed homes. The council require 30 per cent to be affordable housing.

Funding towards pedestrian bridges over both waterways feature as part of the development.

1,500-home masterplan green-lit

At the same meeting, held on 25 October, the committee approved a revised planning application for Wretchwick Green in Bicester.

The application was submitted by Wates Developments and Redrow Homes, and is a key element of the garden town plan for the area.

Plans include 1,500 homes; 71.64 hectares of green space; a primary school and employment land provision.

Proposals for a hotel to be built on the former RAF Bicester site, which is owned and occupied by the applicant, Bicester Heritage, were also approved. It will have 344 beds, as well as a bar, restaurant and conference rooms.


24-acre site brought to market in Lincolnshire

A site with planning permission for 171 properties has been brought to the market in Louth, Lincolnshire.

Development agency Fisher German is acting on behalf of the landowners and land promoter Northern Trust to sell the site. Bids are invited from housebuilders.

Matt Handford, of Fisher German, said the development of the 23.97-acre site will bring much-needed new homes to the town.


44 homes given go-ahead in Hemel

Dacorum Borough Council has approved Hightown Housing Association’s plans to build 44 homes on the TopCar service centre site in Hemel Hempstead’s.

Located on Paradise Industrial Estate on Wood Lane, the new homes will be a mix of one and two-bedroom apartments. Construction is likely to start in summer 2019 and finish by early 2021.

Andrew Royall, development director for Hightown Housing Association, said: “This is fantastic news for local people struggling to pay private rents. Affordable housing is much-needed and these homes are in a great location, close to the town centre.”

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