CITY PLAN PART TWO - PLANNING SECTION
Liberal Democrats believe that the principles of planning should include accessibility, community participation, good design and interconnectivity with local services and sustainable transport. Most of all, we believe that the local community and the people of our City should be able to have a say about decision making.
- Working from home: More people are now working from home in a more flexible way so the City Plan needs to reflect this trend. (Justification; Demographic Changes; Employment)
- There should be more affordable work/live units for people who are self-employed people and those running small businesses. (Justification: Demographic Changes; Employment).
- With an increasing number of people working from home, specific consideration needs to be given to issues such as working space; noise; Whole Body Vibration (W.B.V.); and electronic/technical disruption such as E.M.C. This needs to be considered in conversions of existing buildings and in new-builds. (Justification; Health, Safety).
GENERAL PLANNING ISSUES
- High Rise Buildings (DM 18): We recognise the need for more affordable/social rented homes but reject the idea that this can only be achieved through building more high-rise buildings/tower blocks. Consideration must be given to issues such as safety; community cohesion; fire risks; future maintenance costs; and the historic lack of popularity of such forms of living. Most residents seem to prefer more "human scale" homes, so as a general rule we reject all developments of this kind in Conservation Areas and believe that these should be restricted to no more than nine storeys in other areas. (Justification: Community Cohesion; Safety; Financial Costs)
- DM18: Spaces between buildings: Wherever possible, spaces between buildings should be allocated as "pocket parks" to help provide leisure and seating space for local residents.
- Planning Policy shouldn't significantly contradict employment, environmental, housing and sustainable transport policies within the City Plan. (Justification: Consistency of City Plan).
- The Council should carry out a regular review of the Office requirements of the City (every two years) to ensure that an excess number of office buildings aren't provided and that wherever possible, redundant, underused and empty office buildings are brought into use for affordable and social rented homes. (Justification: Future Housing Needs; Employment Trends)
- Some off-street vehicle parking and cycle parking should be provided within larger housing developments (e.g. more than eight units of housing) and for commercial developments.
(Justification: Reducing on-street Parking Issues; Loading; Deliveries; Maintenance; Local Economy)
- The Council should make use of the power to serve "completion orders" to reduce the problem of Developers holding land and uncompleted developments for long periods (Justification: Housing Provision; Local Economy).
CONSULTATION AND PARTNERSHIP WORKING
- General support for the sections referring to Conservation Areas and Listed Buildings (DM26-27). Residents and Community Organisations should also be able to nominate streets to be included within existing Conservation Areas to ensure that these are protected, following a period of public consultation. (Justification: Community Planning; Protection Of Amenity).
- DM28-29: Community Organisations are able to nominate buildings as "Assets of Community Importance" if they are of significance to the local community. This process should be given further publicity by the Council and become part of the Councils key planning approach. (Justification: Community Planning; Participation; Protection Of Amenity).
- The Council should work in partnership with organisations such as the Community Land Trust, Housing Associations, Local Business Organisations and Amenities Groups. (Justification: Partnership working)
- Larger Planning Applications should be subject to wider consultation through the Council's online portal and where possible through "paper" consultations conducted at Libraries and Community Buildings. (Justification: Community Participation).
- The Council should consider local drainage and potential localised flooding issues in all developments. Existing drainage issues should also be considered and grant applications made to help solve these issues as a matter of priority for infrastructure projects. (Justification: Environmental Protection).
- The Council should ensure that it has detailed plans in place to deal with emergencies relating to environmental issues; transport; health; extreme weather events and other possible circumstances. This should be in line with legislation (including the Civil Contingencies Act 2004) and local needs. (Justification Security and Safety of Local Residents)