Draft Core Strategy (incorporating Preferred Options) October 2010

Draft Core Strategy (incorporating Preferred Options)

Provision of Open Space, Outdoor Playing Space and Sports, Cultural and Community Facilities in New Development

Local Standards and Planning Obligations

11.9 PPG17 advises that planning obligations should be used as a means to remedy local deficiencies in the quantity or quality of open space, sports and recreational provision. Local authorities will be justified in seeking planning obligations where the quantity and quality of provision is inadequate or under threat, or where new development increases local needs. It is essential that local authorities have undertaken detailed assessments of needs and audits of existing facilities, and set appropriate local standards in order to justify planning obligations.

11.10 Once this is completed, local standards can be applied and planning obligations used to secure additional provision or enhancement where required.

11.11 Paragraphs 12 and 33 of the PPG indicate that it is reasonable for existing deficits in provision in both quantity and quality to be addressed through planning obligations and where surpluses of one type of provision is identified, for obligations to be used to secure an alternative type of provision. Paragraph 33 states:

"…Planning obligations should be used as a means to remedy local deficiencies in the quantity or quality of open space, sports and recreational provision. Local authorities will be justified in seeking planning obligations where the quantity and quality of provision is inadequate or under threat, or where new development increases local needs. It is essential that local authorities have undertaken detailed assessments of needs and audits of existing facilities, and set appropriate local standards in order to justify planning obligations."
 

11.12 In terms of the provision of open space, outdoor playing space and sports, cultural and community facilities in South Somerset, local standards for quantity, quality and accessibility have been developed as part of the Council’s emerging Green Space Strategy and PPG17 assessments. These standards have then been used to identify areas where there is a shortfall/overprovision in these areas. It is important to ensure that any new development does not exacerbate any existing deficiencies and that opportunities are taken to secure improvements both in quantity and the quality of open space, outdoor playing space and sports, cultural and community provision where appropriate.

11.13 The quantitative standards are set out below in Policies HW1 and HW2. However, the quality and location of open space, outdoor playing space and sports, cultural and community facilities are of equal importance to the quantity provided and the local standards for quality and accessibility and their application can be found in the Council’s emerging Green Space Strategy and PPG17 assessments. Further advice on the Council’s design standards for open space is found in the Landscape Design Guide Addendum and the Play Policy produced by the Council.[1]

11.14 In accordance with Policy SS7, these standards can then be applied and used to assess the level of open space, outdoor playing space and sports, cultural and community facilities that would be needed to meet the reasonable requirements of a development’s future occupants, providing that the obligation meets the three statutory tests in paragraph 62 of the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) Overview.[2]

11.15 The provision of ‘dual use’ open space associated with schools to meet standards may be considered but only where open access can be secured and where the District Council is satisfied that long term open access can be achieved.

11.16 The viability of the proposed development will also need to be taken into account in accordance with Policy SS8. In the case of an enabling development, or where the development is unable to deliver all the policy requirements for reasons of viability, an open book approach will be required in line with the Policy and the Council's adopted Protocol[3].

1. SSDC Play Policy and Strategy (2007-2012) [back]
2. Community Infrastructure Levy An Overview, CLG, March 2010. [back]
3. SSDC Planning Obligations Protocol 2006. [back]