The next phase of Central Lincolnshire councils’ Draft Local Plan has been revealed, setting out targets for 36,960 new homes by 2036 – of which Lincoln is in line for a total of more than 23,000.
The next round of consultation on the 25-year plan sets growth targets for new homes, jobs and amenities surrounding Lincoln, Gainsborough and Sleaford.
Plans seek the development of 1,540 new homes per year across North Kesteven, West Lindsey and the City of Lincoln, nearly twice the rate of house building achieved in the last three years.
Some 9,085 homes have already been built, or are being constructed since 2012, with sites allocated for the remaining 28,000.
Growth has been recommended for preferred focus areas, mainly in the edges of existing urban areas, with a ‘cap’ proposed in smaller villages, unless villagers indicate there is need for more.
As previously reported, villagers have previously contested consultations on growth plans, stating Lincoln is being subjected to ‘urban sprawl.
The housing growth target for the Lincoln area is an additional 23,654 homes to the current stock level of 78,858 by 2036; an increase of more than 30% and just over 64% of the Central Lincolnshire housing target.
The biggest chunk of development would be the identified ‘Western Growth Corridor’ in Lincoln, along with the South East Quadrant in North Kesteven.
For areas like Sleaford, the housing levels are predicted to more than double by 2036.
The Draft Local Plan spans from 2012 and includes the last three years. Of the proposed homes, 9,085 (24.6%) have already been built or given permission, and a target has been outlined for the provision of affordable housing.
Under the plans, allocations for sites would be only for 25 homes or more.
Allocations have already been proposed for 28,095 new homes across Central Lincolnshire (equating to 78.2% of the housing requirement).
A policy sets out the recommended level of development for each village. This does not restrict growth but sets out a recommended level which could be deemed appropriate.
Large scale developments on the edges of the urban areas form the largest proportion of housing delivery across Central Lincolnshire. These will deliver a total of 16,300 homes over the plan period.
Allocations at this stage do not necessarily mean they will be adopted as development sites or built on.
A total of 3,463 homes have also been put forward for preferred allocations in villages with a windfall assumption of 1,691 homes over the plan period.
Central Lincolnshire Local Growth Targets have been published on August 26, as well as coinciding plans for infrastructure and details of housing standards, and affordability.
The document also includes policies to ensure infrastructure needed to support the targets is included in all planning applications.
In developing the plan, partners have identified a “shopping list of infrastructure requirements” which must be provided to support roads, schools and GPs – and will in part be funded by the developments.
The Central Lincolnshire Joint Strategic Planning Committee is recommended to approve the Draft Local Plan at its meeting on Monday, September 7, after which consultation event dates will be released.
Councillor Jeff Summers, Chair of the Committee and Leader of West Lindsey District Council, said: “Due to the last few years of financial instability, house building has fallen way behind the physical demand.
“It is vitally important that we have a development plan which will inform everyone where housing and industrial uses should be located.”
North Kesteven’s Executive Board Member Councillor Richard Wright added: “When planning applications are submitted there are discussions about the viability of them.
“Regarding brownfield development it has to do with suitability. We are the same as everywhere else, we will always look at land we should build on first and if that’s suitable brownfield then that’s what we’ll do.
“We want to stress the message that the figures we are looking at are over a 20 year period.”
Thousands more jobs
Councillor Colin Davie, Executive Board Member for Economic Development at Lincolnshire County Council explained how the local plan would be worth “hundreds of millions of pounds” to the local economy.
Housing and employment growth are closely linked, and are being considered alongside one another.
The Economic Growth Delivery Plan, also published today, outlines targets for new jobs in the area.
Councillor Davie said: “An employment needs assessment outlines that the plans would bring 11,894 full-time-equivalent jobs by 2036.
“Whilst we have a target that is worked out on economic forecasting models, I’m hopeful that we not only deliver what we are setting out within the plan, but we aim to do even more.
“We are looking for inward investment from overseas and major brands into the Central Lincolnshire area.”
Balancing on the bypass
Leader of the City of Lincoln Council Ric Metcalfe added in a meeting on Wednesday, August 26 that figures in the growth plans are hugely reliant on the progress of major schemes in the area such as the Lincoln Eastern Bypass.
He said: “The levels of growth of this plan aren’t a million miles away from the growth that we have been experiencing for many years.
“People are apprehensive about change, but the good thing about this plan is that it is very well evidenced about the extent of growth and the needs.
“Of course the Eastern Bypass is a hugely important piece of infrastructure because it’s strategically important to the Lincoln growth area. To make the growth work well the scheme is hugely important.
“We will be waiting anxiously for the outcome of the second public inquiry.
“It’s important that people look at what is being proposed.”
More information on the Draft Local Plan can be found on the website here.