Liverpool City Council is on the brink of publishing a new 15 year plan that will meet the need to create 35,000 new homes and develop 370 acres of land for new jobs.
Following various consultation exercises Liverpool’s Local Plan is set to go before the council’s cabinet on Friday, 19 January setting out the key priorities to grow the city’s economy up to 2033.
The Local Plan, which includes a new policy for controlling developments in the city centre, will also be scrutinised at a special Regeneration Select Committee on Wednesday, 17 January and at the first Full Council meeting of the year on Wednesday, 24 January.
The document, which also sets out a new robust process to limit conversions of properties into homes in multiple occupation (HMO’s), will then go out to final public consultation before being submitted to the Secretary of State for inspection.
Liverpool’s population is expected to rise from 470,000 to 517,000 people by 2033 and the plan, which has been in development with numerous agencies since February 2013, has identified 100 detailed policies to manage this growth.
Consultation on the draft Local Plan occurred in early 2014 and in October 2016 and the feedback, which was garnered more than 2,100 comments from local residents, community organisations and business organisations, has been incorporated where possible.
Key to the plan is to focus future development on brownfield land and making sufficient provision for regeneration projects and job creation in the city’s key employment areas.
The Local Plan is the key, statutory planning and development policy each local authority is obliged to produce. It will shape Liverpool’s development needs until 2033 by:
- Allowing the build of nearly 35,000 new homes to meet the needs of a growing population
- Providing the places to work for an estimated growth in jobs of nearly 38,000 – on nearly 150 hectares (370 acres) or nearly 250 football pitches in area
- Protecting and managing developments affecting open space and the natural and historic environment of the city so that it is not significantly affected
- Promoting better quality new homes that are wheelchair accessible, meeting residents needs throughout their lifetime if necessary
- Increasing the supply of affordable homes
- Managing the over-concentration of developments such as hot food takeaways and homes in multiple occupation (HMO’s’)
- Promoting key development areas especially within the City Centre – protecting the key assets and role of those areas while encouraging and enabling more growth from Baltic Triangle in the South to Ten Streets in the north and the waterfront in the west to Paddington Village in the east.
Once submitted to the Secretary of State, Liverpool’s Local Plan will be considered by an independent inspector who will decide whether or not it is ‘sound’.
To be found sound, the Local Plan must comply with all necessary legal requirements and pass the tests of ‘soundness’, which require that it should have been positively prepared so that it meets the future development needs of Liverpool and it must be justified, effective and consistent with national policy.
Any comments, whether of support or objection to the soundness of the Local Plan, will be considered by the Inspector at an Examination in Public in the summer this year.
Once approved the Local Plan will then replace the existing Unitary Development Plan 2002 on all planning matters.
Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson, who recently announced a new housing company is being set up to deliver 10,000 new homes, said: “Liverpool is undergoing unprecedented growth and this Local Plan sets out the framework on how and where this will continue and flourish.
“This is a hugely vital document and demonstrates our commitment to building new affordable homes and attracting new jobs.
“Everyone living and seeking to invest in Liverpool will be affected by this Local Plan which is why we’ve been consulting with businesses and residents for the past three years before it is submitted to the Secretary of State, to get their views.
“The feedback we’ve had has been extensive and it has helped shape many of the policies which will all help to create a healthier and more prosperous city.”
Councillor Ann O’Byrne, Deputy Mayor of Liverpool, added: “This Local Plan sets out to determine what type of city Liverpool wants to be and how we accommodate a growing and changing population over the coming decades.
“The adoption of the policies within it will be a great step forward for the city because they address the issues that affect our daily life and will give the council the means to act on issues and areas that simply didn’t exist when the last plan was adopted 15 years ago.
“It’s impact will be huge because it examines all the fundamental questions like what type of homes should people live in, what type of jobs we can provide, what type of high street we shop in, how do we enjoy our parks and green spaces and how do we travel between them.
“The over-riding message is that people want to see Liverpool grow in a sustainable way and this Local Plan provides the tools for us to achieve exactly that.”