Eight sites in Council’s strategic land assessment deemed unsuitable

A number of sites which had been identified as having potential for future development in Swindon Borough Council’s Strategic Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment (SHELAA) have been re-assessed as no longer being suitable following feedback from local residents.

Published: Monday, 10th December 2018

The sites that are now considered unsuitable are:

•         Site S0312 South of Okebourne Park

•         Sites S2050 and S2051 Land Adjacent to Swallowfield and Land at Covingham Park

•         Site S0256 Land North of Coate roundabout (South of Oldlands Walk)

•         Site S0388 Lakeside

•         Site S0195 South of the Willows

•         Site S0243 Crescent to East of Bodiam Drive

•         Site S0238 Open space south of Rannoch Close

A number of comments were also considered in relation to land to the east of 261 Marlborough Road, however council planning officers concluded that a proportion of the site has development potential on the grounds that any development would not significantly affect the role of the open space and strategic green corridor.

Officers are still considering comments received on other sites in the SHELAA.

The Council asked local people to comment on the initial SHELAA list over a six-week period which ended on 12 November. A total of 840 comments were made with two petitions also being submitted to the Council.

The SHELAA will help inform the preparation of the Council’s Local Plan Review and can also be used by parishes to help produce their own Neighbourhood Plans.

The SHELAA only identifies sites with potential for future development and does not allocate sites to be developed.

The allocation of sites for future development will take place in the Local Plan review or in any locally produced Neighbourhood Plans.

Sites included in the SHELAA will not necessarily be granted planning permission and all applications will continue to be considered against national policies, the Council’s Development Plan and any other relevant material considerations.

Councillor Gary Sumner, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Strategic Planning, said: “We have been clear from the start of this process that the SHELAA merely identifies potential sites that could be developed and in no way should be seen as a precursor to guaranteed development.

“The engagement exercise was extremely informative, we received lots of really passionate responses from members of the public and our planning team have been pouring over this feedback and examining in closer detail the planning merits of each individual site. I would like to thank everyone who gave their views for taking the time to contribute to this important planning process.

“It is clear from the feedback that the sites are much valued local open space. In planning terms we recognise the potential adverse impact on green corridors and the integrity and value of the parks considered as a whole.”

Members of the public will be able to take part in a statutory consultation period to come in early 2019 on the Local Plan Review.

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