Revised Development Strategy

Ended on the 29th July 2013
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(31) 4 Revised Development Strategy

This section sets out the revised (interim) levels of housing and employment growth and the broad distribution of future housing and employment development.

4.1 Level of Housing Growth 2011 - 2029

(332) RDS1: The Council is adopting an Interim Level of Growth of 12,300 homes between 2011 and 2029

4.1.1 The Planning Inspector appointed to examine Coventry City Council's Core Strategy has recommended that the City carry out a Joint Strategic Housing Market Assessment (Joint SHMA) with its neighbouring authorities, specifically Warwick District, Rugby Borough and Nuneaton & Bedworth Borough Councils. This will help to ensure that housing growth in the sub-region is considered strategically and all needs are met. The first stage of the study will report in August 2013. For the purposes of this consultation exercise, therefore, the Council is adopting an interim level of growth of 12,300 homes between 2011 and 2029. This may be revised pending the findings of the Joint SHMA and the resulting co-operation between the authorities.

4.1.2 Justification for the Interim Level of Housing Growth

4.1.3 Current national planning policy in the National Planning Policy Framework (The Framework) states that local planning authorities should carry out a Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA) in order to have a clear understanding of housing needs in their area. This should include the scale and mix of housing as well as the housing needs of different groups. The scale of housing should meet household and population projections, taking account of migration and demographic change.

4.1.4 The Cambridge Centre for Housing and Planning Research has produced guidance1 on establishing housing requirements. The guidance concludes that any modification of the official ONS projections is best restricted to sensitivity tests as the official estimates are generally seen as the best available. In other words, strong justification is required to deviate from the official projections.

1 Choice of Assumptions in Forecasting Housing Requirements - Methodological Notes (March 2013)

4.1.5 ONS Sub-national Population & Household Projections: The latest ONS sub-national population projections (SNPP) are the Interim 2011- based Population Projections which only cover the period to 2021. If these figures are rolled forward using the birth and death rates from the 2008 - based SNPP, this would indicate a need for 11,500 homes between 2011 and 2029. The interim 2011 - based household projections showed an increase of 6,248 households between 2011 and 2021, an increase of 625 households a year.

4.1.6 Strategic Housing Market Assessment (March 2012): A SHMA was carried out by consultants GL Hearn in 2011/12 which included a number of population and household projections based on different assumptions as to levels of migration and economic growth. The purpose was to establish the link between economic growth, migration and the age structure of the population. If the District wishes to achieve economic growth rates in line with national forecasts, then what levels of inward migration would be required in order to retain the required levels of people of working age? With an ageing population, economic growth cannot be achieved without inward migration. The SHMA projections showed that between 11,300 and 14,300 new homes could be required between 2011 and 2028, depending upon whether or not existing levels of commuting remained the same.

4.1.7 Economic and Demographic Forecasts Study (December 2012): This study was commissioned by Warwick District and Coventry City Councils in 2012 to consider the economic and demographic growth prospects for each Council taking account of a potential major Technology and Business Park on land to the north-east and south of Coventry Airport and to take account of changing national economic forecasts and the 2011 census data.

4.1.8 These employment-led population and household projections pointed to a need for between 13,300 and 13,800 additional homes between 2011 and 2029, depending upon whether the proposed Gateway scheme was built and its effect in terms of displacing jobs from elsewhere in the District. The main reason for the difference between these projections and those in the SHMA is that more up to date economic forecasts showed that employment rates were higher than forecast in previous studies.

4.1.9 Establishing a Level of Growth: The demographic work carried out for the District to date has highlighted the sensitivity of employment-led population projections particularly in terms of economic forecasts and the way that they impact upon migration. In arriving at an interim level of growth, the Council has considered the ONS population projections and household projections as a starting point and then considered whether the employment-led projections would justify deviating from those results.

4.1.10 Economic modelling work indicates that the level of housing growth derived from the latest ONS projections (11,500 homes) would deliver a local growth rate (GVA) of about 2.3% which is equivalent to the forecast growth for the West Midlands. Historically, the Council's GVA increase has been more in line with the national rate which is forecast to be 2.5%. A GVA increase of 2.4% (mid way) would require about 12,300 additional homes. This is therefore the interim housing requirement adopted for the purposes of this consultation.

4.2 Table 1: Meeting the Housing Requirement

(38) RDS2: The housing requirement of 12,300 homes will be met from the following categories of sites

Sites completed between 2011 and 2013

447

Sites with outstanding planning permission at 1 April 2013

1,681

Small urban SHLAA sites which are assessed as being potentially suitable

300

An allowance for windfall sites coming forward in the plan period

2,800

Consolidation of existing employment areas

450

Sites allocated in this Plan

6,622

Total

12,300

4.2.1 Completions and Commitments: Between 2011 and 2013, a total of 447 homes were completed and as of 1 April 1,681 homes were the subject of a planning permission.

4.2.2 Small Urban SHLAA Sites: A number of small (<50 dwellings) sites were identified in the Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA) as being potentially suitable for housing. These were capable of accommodating a total of 366 new dwellings. Allowing for the fact that some may not come forward, an allowance is made for 300 dwellings from small SHLAA sites.

4.2.3 Windfall Sites: An analysis of windfall housing development (ref: "Estimating a Windfall Allowance: Revised Development Strategy Stage. May 2013") has taken place and it is estimated that, in addition to the small SHLAA sites and allowing for changing trends, a total of 2,800 dwellings could be built on future windfall sites.

4.2.4 Consolidation of Existing Employment Areas: The Employment Land Review assessed the District's existing employment areas and considered their long term prospects. From this it is suggested that land to accommodate 450 dwellings is likely to become available during the Plan period. See paras 4.5.18 to 4.5.20 for further details.

4.2.5 The following Table shows how much housing land can already be accounted for and how much land will be need to be allocated in the Plan.

Table 2: Calculation of the Housing to be allocated

Source

Dwellings

Completions 2011 - 2013

447

Balance to be provided 2013 - 2029

11,853

Commitments at 1 April 2013

1,681

Small urban SHLAA sites

300

Allowance for windfalls

2,800

Consolidation of existing employment areas

450

TOTAL

5,231

Balance to be allocated

6,622

4.3 Broad Location of Development: Housing

(624) RDS3: The Council's Preferred Option for the broad location of development is to:

  • concentrate growth within, and on the edge of, the existing urban areas
  • protect the Green Belt from development where alternative non-Green Belt sites are suitable and available
  • avoid development in locations which could potentially lead to the coalescence of settlements
  • distribute growth across the District, including within and/or on the edge of some villages
  • allow for a hierarchy of growth in the rural area to include:
    • a higher level of growth in larger, more sustainable villages with a reasonable level of services
    • limited growth in smaller villages and hamlets, of a scale appropriate to the existing settlement

4.3.1 Justification for the broad location of development for housing

4.3.2 Since the June/July 2012 consultation, the Council has revised the broad location of development. This is partly due to the consultation responses, but also as a result of new information on the ability of non-Green Belt sites to the south of Warwick, Leamington and Whitnash to absorb new development.

4.3.3 The concerns of the Council in 2012 about the impact of a large amount of development to the south of Warwick, Leamington and Whitnash included:

  • the reduction in the gap between the three towns and the village of Bishop's Tachbrook and the perception of coalescence between the settlements;
  • the cumulative impact of this level of development to the south;
  • the impact on infrastructure, in particular transport and increased car journeys along the Europa Way corridor; the town centres and the M40; and
  • the lack of choice of location of housing.

4.3.4 Since the June/ July consultation three additional pieces of research have been completed which support the potential for concentrating more development in areas outside of the Green Belt:

  • Richard Morrish Associates have completed further work on Delivering Sustainable Landscape Planning;
  • G L Hearn have updated a Review of Employment Land; and
  • Warwickshire County Council has completed Phases 2 and 3 of the Strategic Transport Assessment.

4.3.5 In addition, the analysis of representations received following the June/ July 2012 consultation shows considerable opposition to development in the Green Belt to the north of Warwick and Leamington, particularly if there were alternative non-Green Belt locations to the south of the towns. Further, there was a general desire for more development to take place on brownfield land.

4.3.6 In the light of representations received and new evidence, the Council has re-examined the capacity of non-Green Belt land, to the south of Warwick/ Leamington/ Whitnash, and brownfield land to accommodate new development.

4.3.7 The Landscape Study examined the cumulative impact of development to the south of the towns and the ways in which landscape impact could be mitigated. It concludes that the perceptions of urban sprawl, and coalescence of Bishop's Tachbrook with the urban areas, could be overcome by establishing a network of green infrastructure corridors. This would include a main corridor of naturalistic open space along the Tach Brook which could create a substantial green buffer between new development and agricultural land/Bishop's Tachbrook to the south.

4.3.8 The Landscape Study considers, however, that the area known as The Asps, provides a historic context to the Castle Park. As open land it is prominent in terms of approaches to Warwick and provides a valuable setting for the town. It is recommended that the area is protected from development.

4.3.9 The Review of Employment Land has examined existing employment areas in the towns and concluded that some small industrial estates have high levels of vacancies and poor quality accommodation.

The study considers that some of this land could be consolidated to:

  • improve the quality of the buildings and the environment; and/or
  • release some land for housing development.

The Council will actively promote the regeneration of these areas in order to make best use of the land for housing and employment uses.

4.3.10 Phase 2 of the Strategic Transport Assessment (published in March 2013) modelled a scenario ("the Southern Focus") whereby strategic urban extensions amounting to 5,500 homes were concentrated to the south of Warwick / Leamington / Whitnash in the areas around Europa Way, Gallows Hill and Harbury Lane, with a further 750 to the East of Whitnash. The purpose of modelling this scenario was to consider whether there was a threshold over which the quantum of development would mean the road network could no longer accommodate the amount of traffic generated from this area. The modelling showed that although development distributed in this way would lead to significant amounts of additional traffic in this area, this could reasonably be mitigated and indeed overall this scenario performed comparably to the more dispersed 2012 Preferred Options proposals. The result of this meant that exceptional circumstances for releasing green belt for developments on traffic grounds could not be justified.

4.3.11 Phase 3 of the Strategic Transport Assessment published in May 2013, modelled a scenario which is similar to the distribution of growth set out in this Revised Development Strategy and added further specific detail to the potential mitigation schemes and costs. This showed that the level and distribution of growth in the Revised Development Strategy could be accommodated subject to extensive mitigation measures which are summarised in section 5.6.

4.3.12 The Revised Development Strategy, therefore, proposes that a significant amount of new development will be brought forward to the south of Warwick / Leamington / Whitnash, outside of the Green Belt. However, in the case of development to meet the needs of Kenilworth, there are no non-Green Belt options and land at Thickthorn is considered to be the least harmful alternative in terms of the purposes of Green Belt land and the most sustainable in terms of its proximity to the Town and its services. In addition a further Green Belt site at Red House Farm in the Lillington area will provide a potential opportunity for the wider regeneration of the locality.

4.3.13 For villages, information on the approach to demonstrating a robust and justifiable approach to the establishment of a settlement hierarchy is contained in the technical paper 'Draft Settlement Hierarchy Report' 2013.

4.3.14 The more sustainable village locations have been provided with an initial assessment of a range of housing growth, based upon:

  • where possible, feedback from Parish Councils and Neighbourhood Plan teams on growth ranges;
  • a varied percentage increase in household levels, proportional to the existing size of the settlements, and;
  • an outline assessment of key factors which may impact upon the ability of settlements to accommodate growth, including primary school capacity and sustainability of services/facilities; role and character of the settlements; strategic assessment of the suitability of sites; environmental impact, and the overall vision for the settlement.

4.3.15 This modified proportional growth model has allowed the Council to establish a broad range of potential dwelling numbers, which will be subject to further review in light of ongoing work on Green Belt, habitat, landscape impact and site options. The overall strategy for villages aims to focus limited new housing development on the more sustainable villages. However, it is recognised that smaller, less sustainable villages may also benefit from limited housing growth in order to widen the choice of housing, including affordable housing, and help sustain services.

(146) RDS4: The broad location of development is as follows:


Total

Dwellings

% Total

Urban Brownfield Sites

380

5.7

Sites on the edge of Warwick, Leamington & Whitnash

4,550

68.6

Sites on the edge of Kenilworth

700

10.6

Village Development

1,000

15.1

TOTAL

6,630

100.0

4.3.16 Approximately 17% of the above allocated housing (excluding village development) will be located within the existing Green Belt on the edge of towns. Further site evaluation work is required in order to establish the exact location of sites to be allocated adjacent to villages. Some of this land will also be located within the existing Green Belt.

4.4 Housing allocations

(46) RDS5: The following sites will be allocated for development:

Site

No. of

Dwellings

Plan Phase

Uses (see key below)

Urban Brownfield Sites

(12) Station Approach

220

1

Ho/OS

(7) Leamington Fire Station

60

2

Ho/OS

(6) Former Ridgeway School

50

1

Ho/OS

(4) Riverside House

50

1

Ho/OS

Total

380







Other Brownfield Sites

Former Severn Trent Sewage Works (south of Harbury Lane) (See section 5.1 for details and to comment)

225

3

Ho/OS


Strategic Urban Extension Sites on Greenfield Land

Southern sites (area south of Warwick and Whitnash) (See section 5.1 for details)

3195

1,2,3

Ho/Emp/OS/ Com

East of Whitnash (See section 5.2 for details and to comment)

500

1,2,3

Ho/OS/Com

East of Kenilworth (See section 5.4 for details and to comment)

700

1,2,3

Ho/Emp/OS/ Com

Total

4,395




Other Sites on Greenfield Land

Woodside Farm (See section 5.1 for details and to comment)

280

1

Ho/OS

Red House Farm (See section 5.3 for details and to comment)

250

1

Ho/OS

Fieldgate Lane (See section 5.2 for details and to comment)

100

1

Ho/OS

Total

630



Primary Service Villages

(44) Bishop's Tachbrook

100-150

1,2,3


(1) Cubbington

100-150

1,2,3


(155) Hampton Magna

100-150

1,2,3


(64) Kingswood (Lapworth)

100-150

1,2,3


(13) Radford Semele

100-150

1,2,3


Total

C 600




Secondary Service Villages

(43) Barford

70-90

1,2,3


(22) Baginton

70-90

1,2,3


(4) Burton Green

70-90

1,2,3


(56) Hatton Park

70-90

1,2,3


(12) Leek Wootton

70-90

1,2,3


Total

C 400



Uses Key:

  • Ho: Housing
  • Emp: Employment
  • OS: Open Space
  • Com: Community Facilities

4.4.1 The sites will be allocated for housing and mixed use development. The Council will work with developers and the local community to bring forward sustainable developments in attractive surroundings under the principles of Garden Suburbs. The three strategic urban extensions will include a range of supporting uses including for instance, open space, schools, shops, community and health facilities and, in some cases, employment.

4.4.2 Away from the urban areas, new housing growth will primarily be concentrated in villages which score highest for settlement sustainability. Where villages are currently 'washed over' by Green Belt, new village envelopes will be established to enable development to take place.

4.4.3 A village classification and range of housing has currently been identified for each settlement, which will be subject to review in light of ongoing work on Green Belt, ecology, landscape and site options. The exact phasing, scale and type of housing growth will vary between villages but will need to:

  • be located within the village envelope;
  • give priority to the development of brownfield and previously used sites;
  • ensure an appropriate mix of dwelling types and sizes, including affordable housing;
  • ensure acceptable design, layout and scale has been established through a collaborative approach to design and development, involving Parish Councils, Neighbourhood Plan teams and local residents;
  • carefully consider the quality of the development and how this relates to local housing vernaculars, and
  • ensure landscaping will be used positively to contribute to and protect the quality of place.

4.4.4 It is important that rural housing projects respond positively to the uniqueness and quality of the local environment and should be located within or on the edge of established settlements, so as to avoid the development of isolated, individual or groups of dwellings which are detached from or peripheral to the main villages. Within Primary and Secondary Service Villages existing shops, services and facilities will be strongly protected.

4.4.5 Smaller Rural Settlements: Warwick District also contains a wide range of smaller villages and hamlets and these are listed below. It is recognised that supporting only the larger, more sustainable locations across the semi-rural and rural parts of the district, risks ignoring the housing needs of other areas and the importance of their often dispersed local services and facilities. Indeed a policy which ignores the complexity of rural areas and housing may put at further risk local services and facilities, and generally make the areas more unsustainable over the course of the plan period.

Table 3: Other Villages and Settlements:

Smaller and Feeder Villages

Very Small Villages and Hamlets

(1) Baddesley Clinton

Ashow

Bubbenhall

Beausale

Hampton on the Hill

Blackdown

(2) Hatton Green

Eathorpe

Hunningham

(7) Hatton Station

Lowsonford

Hill Wootton

(2) Norton Lindsey

(1) Little Shrewley

Offchurch

Pinley Green

(5) Old Milverton

(2) Rowington

(1) Sherbourne

Rowington Green

(4) Shrewley Common

Turners Green

(3) Stoneleigh


Wasperton


(2) Weston under Wetherley


4.4.6 Where it is practical and also avoids compromising the open character of the Green Belt, new village envelopes will be established to accommodate infill or small groups of dwellings (including live-work units), subject to detailed form, scale and character considerations. The scale of development will need to be carefully managed and it is the Council's intention to introduce capped proportional growth rates for the smaller settlements detailed above, subject to further consultation with parish councils and in light of ongoing work on Green Belt, ecology and landscape considerations. Locally agreed growth rates will allow parish councils to support development which is of a proportional scale to their settlements and help places maintain their distinctiveness and character.

4.4.7 Furthermore, in the villages and settlements detailed above, limited infill housing development of an appropriate proportional scale will only be acceptable where it can be demonstrated that:

  • it is supported by the parish council and/or neighbourhood plan;
  • a registered social landlord is supportive of the development;
  • it is supported through an up-to-date housing needs survey covering local affordable and market need;
  • it is located within a defined village or settlement envelope;
  • it would deliver clear improvements to local services and facilities.

4.4.8 All other considerations relating to design, conservation and environmental concerns will also apply.

4.4.9 Settlements not identified within the overall hierarchy are, due to their small size and rural character, considered to be part of the countryside. Development will be strictly controlled outside of defined village envelopes to protect the countryside and settings of towns and villages.

Map 1: Development sites on the edge of the urban area

Map 2: Overview of Development - Whole District

4.5 Employment Land Requirements

(64) RDS6: The Council is proposing to make provision for 22.5 hectares of new employment land between 2011 and 2029. This will be met through:

  • Provision of 16 hectares at strategic development sites.
  • An allowance of 6.5 hectares of land to meet local needs within the proposed employment site of sub-regional significance.

4.5.1 This level of provision has been identified to ensure the right amount and type of employment land is available during the plan period to support the proposed interim level of housing growth.

4.5.2 Justification for the level of new employment land

4.5.3 The National Planning Policy Framework is clear that significant weight should be placed on the need to support and encourage sustainable economic growth as a key national objective. Local authorities should develop a robust evidence base demonstrating a clear understanding of the business needs of the area including:

  • Evidence of the qualitative and quantitative need for land for economic development.
  • An assessment of the existing and future supply of land available for economic development and its suitability to meet identified needs.

4.5.4 It is important that a supply of good quality employment sites is provided to meet the needs of businesses and support existing and growing sectors in the area.

4.5.5 Employment Land Review 2009: An Employment Land Review was prepared by consultants GVA Grimley in 2009 to assess the employment land need in relation to housing and growth targets in the Phase Two Regional Spatial Strategy. This information formed the basis of the previous Core Strategy document.
An addendum to this was prepared in 2010 which considered the projected employment requirement based on three scenarios for growth put forward in the 2011 issues paper.

4.5.6 Employment Land Review Update 2013: Building on the previous work undertaken an update to the Employment Land Review was undertaken in 2013 to inform the strategy for employment land provision in the Local Plan. This takes account of the revised economic projections in the Economic and Demographic Forecasts Study (2012) commissioned to update the housing and growth projections for Warwick District and Coventry City Council in the context of the Coventry and Warwickshire Gateway application. These forecasts take account of recent economic performance and trends as well as the growth potential of the economy at a local and sub-regional level. The update also provides a quantitative and qualitative assessment of existing and committed employment land supply.

4.5.7 Table 4: Calculating the employment land requirement

The supply demand balance

Hectares

Demand


Employment land requirement 2011 - 30 (assessed in Employment Land Review)

36

Margin to provide flexibility of supply

16.5

Potential replacement for redevelopment of existing employment areas

13.5

Total gross employment requirement (demand)

66



Supply


Completed employment land since 2011

0.47

Current available land supply

48

Total gross employment land supply

48.5



Balance to be allocated

17.5 (15 to 25)

4.5.8 It is considered that an additional 15 to 25 hectares of new employment land is needed to meet the needs of the District over the plan period. To allow for flexibility and the assumptions used in modelling and forecasting it is reasonable to provide an additional 22.5 hectares of employment land.

4.5.9 Establishing the demand

4.5.10 Cambridge econometric forecasts were used to assess the demand for employment land and floorspace over the plan period. These take account of differences in economic performance relative to the past according to growth in different sectors of the labour market. These projections do not take into account any supply side factors such as existing employment land allocations or commitments.

4.5.11 In terms of future economic performance, it is expected that the District's economy will continue to outperform the West Midlands economy in the medium and long term with GVA and employment growing at a faster rate than the region. There are a number of key sectors in which the District economy has a strong existing representation including manufacturing, transport and communications and financial and business services. The sub region has a particular strength in the automotive / vehicle manufacturing and advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors in which Warwick District plays a role. It houses the nationally recognised innovation assets at the Warwick Manufacturing Group and Serious Games Institute and there is also a concentration of employment in science, research and development activities associated with agriculture focused in Stoneleigh.

4.5.12 Based on these forecasts total employment in Warwick District is expected to increase by 11.6% over the plan period, a net increase of 10,200 jobs. To accommodate this number of jobs the total requirement for B class uses between 2011 and 2030 is 36 hectares of land and 130,100 sq m of floor space. The split of B class uses is shown below.

Table 5: Demand for Employment Floor space

Demand for employment floor space and land between 2011 and 2030


ha

Floor space (sqm)

B1

31.1

101,100

B2

-4.6

-18,500

B8

9.5

47,500

Total

36

130,100

4.5.13 The focus of the demand is expected to be within use class B1. Whilst the table indicates additional land is not required for uses within class B2 an adequate supply of land will be important to retain and support investment by higher value manufacturing industries.

4.5.14 The allocation of land for employment. This is based on past employment land uptake, making provision for a 5 year margin as well as an amount for any losses of existing occupied employment land.
It also allows flexibility taking account of:

  • potential inaccuracies in the assumptions relating to the forecasting process
  • the need to provide a choice of sites to facilitate competition in the property market
  • the need to provide flexibility to allow for delays in sites coming forward

4.5.15 On this basis it is considered that without taking into account any assessment of the employment land supply or an allowance to replace redevelopment of existing employment areas, employment land provision of 52.5 hectares is required.

4.5.16 Establishing the Employment Land supply

4.5.17 The balance between the demand for employment land over the plan period and the existing supply has been considered. This is both in terms of the overall quantity required and the quality in terms of the nature of the land available and what the market requires.

4.5.18 Consolidation of existing employment areas: In the Preferred Options document the Council identified the need to assess the district's existing employment areas to ensure that they provide the right environment and location to meet current and future business needs. As part of the Employment Land Review 2013 existing employment sites were assessed in terms of suitability over the plan period. This considered a wide range of factors including current performance (condition of building stock, levels of vacancy), constraints (access, prominence) and alternative use potential.

4.5.19 A number of poorer quality areas were identified within the following employment areas which may be suitable for redevelopment for other uses. These could provide in the region of 19.5 hectares of land suitable for redevelopment.

  • Sydenham Industrial Estate, Leamington
  • Cape Road / Millers Road, Warwick
  • Montague Road Industrial Estate, Warwick
  • Common Lane, Kenilworth

4.5.20 Further work is needed to investigate the feasibility of redeveloping these areas including the relationship with neighbouring uses, willingness of landowners, and the potential relocation requirements of any existing companies. If the above areas were released for other uses it would be necessary to provide an amount of replacement provision. Taking account of the density and occupancy rates of these sites it is estimated that 13.5 hectares would be necessary.

4.5.21 Portfolio of committed sites: There is a portfolio of committed employment land made up of sites with planning permission, those covered by development briefs or allocations included within the adopted local plan. Progress on these sites is monitored and reported annually. A detailed review of these sites in terms of their availability, suitability and market attractiveness was undertaken as part of the Employment Land Review 2013 taking account of those unlikely to come forward, where other uses had been granted planning permission and where employment land has been proposed for housing through the proposed growth option.

4.5.22 Overall it is considered that the District has a good range of land within its employment portfolio. The District's economy and position with regard to the strategic highway network means that the supply is more orientated towards B1 office accommodation and smaller industrial premises (sub 5,000 sqm).
It is considered that the District would benefit from additional good quality town centre office provision through mixed use development.

4.5.23 A supply of 48 hectares has been identified. In addition to the available supply, 0.47 hectares of employment land has been completed in the District since 2011.

4.6 Broad Location of Development: Employment

(21) RDS7: The location of new employment land is as follows:

Site

Employment land (hectares)

Thickthorn, Kenilworth

8

Southern sites (south of Warwick and Whitnash)

8


Allowance for the employment site of sub regional significance

6.5

Total

22.5

4.6.1 The local plan must provide employment opportunities in locations to meet the needs of new housing.
The selection of sites is therefore closely guided by the broad location of housing as set out in 4.3.

4.6.2 Strategic sites

4.6.3 16 hectares of employment land will be allocated within the Strategic Sites:

  • Thickthorn, Kenilworth: It is proposed that 8 hectares of employment land is allocated at Thickthorn in Kenilworth as part of the wider residential led development. The supply of good quality employment land in Kenilworth is limited and this site adjacent to the A46 provides the opportunity for office led development to meet local and the wider needs of the district.
  • Southern sites: It is proposed that 8 hectares of land is allocated in the vicinity of Warwick Technology Park to allow for its expansion. The Council is consulting on two options for locating this; land adjacent to the east side of the Technology Park on the north side of Gallows Hill and land opposite the technology park to the south side of Gallows Hill. Further work is needed to fully assess these options. See paragraphs 5.1.6 and 5.1.7 for further details.

4.6.4 Employment site of sub-regional significance

4.6.5 The Council is making provision for a sub-regional employment site in the north east of the District in the vicinity of Coventry Airport. The case for this proposal is set out in detail in section 5.5. This will primarily meet the needs of the sub-region, however it may also have a role in ensuring the right type of employment land and buildings are available to meet the needs of existing companies in the District. If the development of a similar nature to planning application takes place, it is estimated that 6.5 hectares of existing employment land will be released through displacement. From this it is reasonable to assume that the site could provide for 6.5 hectares of the District's local employment demand.

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