Hart Local Plan: current consultation

Hart District Council has completed its consultation to seek feedback on the draft Local Plan.

The eventual Local Plan will determine how and where new housing is built to meet the district’s housing needs through to 2032.

This was a statutory consultation and Hart District Council is required to take account of comments received from residents as well as bodies such as Hampshire County Council, Town and Parish Councils, Thames Water, etc. The Council will use the comments made to help prepare a ‘Proposed Submission’ version of the Plan later in 2017 which will be subject to further consultation. The Local Plan will then be formally submitted to the Secretary of State for the Department of Communities and Local Government early in 2018, who will appoint an Inspector for the Examination in Public.

Whilst we are all weary of yet another consultation, this one is really important because without a Plan, housing continues to be determined in an unstructured manner using generic policy washed down from the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

We urged residents to respond to the consultation to reinforce the view that a New Settlement is the only viable option that will meet Hart’s housing need to 2032 whilst delivering essential infrastructure such as a much needed new secondary school.

You will see that Hart Council has had to provide for an extra 1,500 houses because current development is not providing enough ‘affordable’ housing, and there is a considerable shortfall. This is partly due to office conversions not providing any affordable housing units and partly because developers claim that providing the suggested number of affordable dwellings is not financially viable (for example, the application for 1,500 homes at Hartland Park (Pyestock) has now been submitted and provides only half the number of affordable dwellings that a development of that size should). We therefore also recommended that residents respond to the consultation to say that Hartland Park must provide the full 40% affordable dwellings in line with Hart Council’s policy (so as not to add further pressure to uplift the overall numbers).

For a brief reminder of previous consultation on housing options, which have fed into the Draft Local Plan go to Background.

To read what has changed since the previous housing options consultation go to What has changed?

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