Discussion by Members and points raised:-
This was entirely the wrong strategy of urban expansions. Should provision have been made for a new development not in the Green Belt in a new settlement outside the Borough.
The Stanborough Road/Gosling site proposed 250 homes at the site of the fourth highest rush hour congestion in the whole County.
The proposals for Panshanger represented classic sprawl.
Birchall Garden Suburb was the site of uncontrolled dumping of waste and there was noxious waste on the site.
It was unacceptable that there was not enough infrastructure and this needed to be looked at again.
There was concern at the sites in Hatfield, but this was the least bad position and a Plan had to be submitted. This was a good as could be achieved for housing and if the Plan was not submitted the Council would lose control of the process.
Proposed gypsy and traveller sites in large scale residential development was far from ideal and care would have to be exercised to integrate these elements in strategic sites.
There was not enough secondary school provision in the Plan and this needed clarification by Hertfordshire County Council. There would be pressure on places at Applecroft School.
The Symondshyde consultation was developer led and the Council should not be relying on this. Symondshyde would be a new village in the middle of nowhere. The site should be moved and replaced with another site.
It had been agreed to allow for the re-provision of a new runway even though that would entail it being moved.
Northaw and Cuffley had independently commissioned their own highways consultation because of concerns and the Council should explore putting forward its own highways assessment.
Northaw and Cuffley’s transport assessment was reviewed by Hertfordshire County Council against its own modelling and other transport assessments carried out for the Cuffley area. Some of the assumptions made in the Northaw and Cuffley assessment were found to be not realistic and therefore it was not considered to be robust so no changes were made to the quantum of development as the proposal felt comfortable.
The Council had to look at fulfilling the housing need and how it could work towards infrastructure being delivered.
The Head of Planning stated that Section 106 obligations, the Community Infrastructure Levy on developers where viable to do so and working with statutory bodies to secure third party investment would all raise funds for infrastructure.
The Head of Planning clarified that the Estate Management Scheme was not a planning mechanism. It was a separate process and not appropriate to the Local Plan.
The problem of viability of bus services and traffic congestion needed to be addressed and this element was not sound.
There would be an opportunity for a process of review after approving the Local Plan for submission.
The Council had to be satisfied that the Plan met objective needs and would satisfy the Inspector.
There had been no attempt to increase the provision of social/affordable housing. There was no intention to have a reduced level of affordable housing, but different levels were proposed depending on the site.
In response to queries, about the delegation of authority, it was clarified that reports would be made back to the Panel, but that as part of the process delegation was needed for minor amendments only, not changes to the Plan and for decisions that would need to be made during the Public Examination. Any main modifications required to be made by the Inspector would be brought back to the Council for review