Southampton City logoSouthampton City Council: This week sees the hearing sessions of the joint Examination into  the City Centre Action Plan (CCAP) and Core Strategy Partial Review.

Southampton’s City Centre Action Plan, which seems to have been a very long time in the making, aims to guide development in the south’s largest city centre. The Core Strategy Partial Review intends to make limited amendments to Southampton City Council‘s Core Strategy which was originally adopted in 2010. The principle changes are to introduce the presumption in favour of sustainable development to bring the document into line with the National Planning Policy Framework and to revise downwards the office and retail target floor spaces for the city to account for the economic downturn. The original figures were devised in the buoyant economy of pre-2008 and now look entirely unachievable.

No change to Southampton’s affordable housing policies which seem reasonably attractive in the present policy climate – up to 4 net increase of units with no contribution and 5-10 only 20%. Talking of affordable housing thresholds, last week the Government published a consultation on a couple of new planning changes one of which is the introduction of a minimum ten unit threshold for affordable housing. I’m sure that would be most welcome for many of our clients, let’s just hope the Government don’t linger on the decision as the uncertainty may lead to many small sites grinding to a halt.

Why not check out our Southampton City Council local authority guide? A useful summary about developing in the area.