12,500 new homes needed in Uttlesford says UDC

12500 new homes in UttlesfordUttlesford District Council (UDC) has published a new study it commissioned with neighbouring councils. The study determines that UDC needs to allow 12,500 new houses in Uttlesford.

Local Plan delays mean more houses required

The study is part of the remedial action that the Planning Inspectorate called for when it rejected the UDC Cabinet’s draft Uttlesford Local Plan in December 2014. The Council Leadership has also said that it calculates that it needs to allow the approvals of new houses at a rate of 568 per year for at least the next 18 years. Previously in 2011 the Council determined it needed to provide 40% fewer (338 pa), but constant delays by the Council in the delivering the Local Plan has meant that the number has kept increasing.

As part of finding a place for these new houses, UDC has asked for developers to come forward with land. UDC’s map below shows where they are looking for land for new homes (click map for larger version).

UDC is specifically looking for land for:

  • Large scale development to create significant town extensions to Saffron Walden, Great Dunmow and east of Bishops Stortford;
  • Large scale development of the major villages of Elsenham, Great Chesterford, Hatfield Heath, Newport, Takeley, Thaxted, Stansted Mountfitchet;
  • Major new settlements on greenfield sites near Birchanger, Elsenham/Henham, Great Chesterford, Great Dunmow, Flitch Green, Little Easton, Stebbing, Takeley;
  • Smaller expansion of the smaller villages of Ashdon, Birchanger, Debden, Clavering, Chrishall, Farnham, Felsted, Flitch Green, Great Easton, Great Sampford, Hatfield Broad Oak, Henham, Leaden Rodding, Little Halingbury, Manuden, Quendon, Radwinter, Rickling, Stebbing, Wimbish ;
  • These locations are in addition to all of the existing sites that the UDC Cabinet previously identified in their rejected draft Local Plan (including those that have already been refused planning by the Planning Inspectorate).

Our existing towns and villages can’t take it

Our existing schools and doctors’ surgeries are full, our sewers are bursting, and our roads are often jammed. We firmly believe that our existing towns and villages can’t take the scale of development that UDC demands. UDC’s own Comparative Sustainability Assessment evidence shows that an approach that looks at new settlement(s) for housing is the best solution – and we support it. A new settlement impacts the fewest existing residents and developers are required to pay their way by providing all of the necessary infrastructure. We also believe that an evidence-led process should determine the best and most sustainable location(s) for any new settlements.

As we’ve done before, we’ll be keeping you informed as UDC brings their proposals to public consultation. Stay tuned.

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Posted in Consultation, Housing and Planning, News, Planning, Spotlight Articles, Uttlesford District Council, Uttlesford Local Plan
8 comments on “12,500 new homes needed in Uttlesford says UDC
  1. Kathryn Winfield says:

    I agree, our towns and villages canno take this development. Their character would be totally changed, and not for the better. Also they do not have the necessay infrastructure. A new purpose built small town would be better.

  2. Peter Riding says:

    I have been telling UDC for years now that the only long term answer to housing needs is a new settlement which is close to good employment prospects and good transport links. Large scale developments in our existing towns is clearly a nonsense and will never deal with the continuing need for more housing year on year.

  3. Lynda Remington says:

    This is clearly a complete nonsense! A settlement(s) is the only sensible answer if we are to avoid turning these lovely small villages and towns into eyesores and take away the countryside we all enjoy.

  4. Paul Wilsher says:

    A new town that is close to transport links is the best way to meet the demand for new housing. We must avoid adding the new houses to the edges of existing settlements, because to do so would ruin the character of the settlements, increase traffic and pollution beyond tolerable levels and overburden the existing education and medical infrastructure.

  5. Caroline Downes says:

    If you keep building houses in the villages they will stop being villages.

  6. There is clearly substantial government pressure to build housing for which there is also clear local demand. I have no problem with this. The fundamental problem with tacking on bits here and there is that the communities chosen for such tacking-on were not designed for this. The necessary infrastructure is simply not there. It therefore follows that a new settlement has to be the most appropriate solution. Where that should be should be dictated by transport links and job opportunity and be evidence-based. This is not a difficult concept to embrace.

  7. Geoff Powers says:

    I agree entirely with the views of the contributors above. We need to ask why exactly UDC are putting out this information in this format at this time, since the unequivocal advice they have received from the PAS consultants is that a single settlement has to be the preferred option. Is this some sort of ‘sop’ to show evidence of joint working with neighbouring authorities? Where is the evidence to demonstrate that the council is acting positively on the specific advice they have received/are receiving? What exactly is the purpose of this list which enumerates virtually every settlement in the district? Where is the evidence that the district council understands the infrastructure implications of pursuing this policy? It appears that Howard Rolfe and his cabinet are setting themselves up again to repeat all the mistakes of the past eight years. And no sign yet of the public consultation arrangements Mr Rolfe has been promising us.

  8. Gareth Brown says:

    It is disgraceful that so many of the new developments are built in Essex without care or thought as to existing residents. We all accept the need for homes to be built but the building without regard to infrastructure causing rat running through existing residential areas and blighting homes is a sad indictment on the local councils plans. Build new developments and let the developers spend some of their huge profits on new roads and links creating new garden towns not destroying the current towns and villages.

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