The ongoing saga of the South Cambs Local Plan is limping to its conclusion.
South Cambridgeshire STILL has no Local Plan, four years after the final draft was submitted. This puts every community in the district at risk of speculative development from builders.
The council keeps losing planning appeals and the planning department is now so bad (losing more than 10% of appeal decisions) that it is at risk of being taken over by the Government. The council would then loses all its income from planning applications even though they still have to do all the work.
The law requires them to have approved planning applications for enough houses to meet community needs for the next five years, but they have not done so.
They also keep refusing requests from local councillors and parish councils for planning applications to go to the planning committee. Making it even more likely that local views will be ignored.
Major features of the current draft include:
- The Inspector looks set to accept a joint housing supply strategy between SCDC and Cambridge City which should reinstate a five-year housing land supply.
- Sites for new developments at Bourn Airfield and Waterbeach will be enlarged.
- The affordable housing threshold is now triggered at >10 houses, rather than >2.
The Inspector did not report before purdah for the local elections started on 23rd March (during which the Council may not make key decisions). So we will not have a Local Plan in place before the middle of the year.