Open Spaces Supplementary Planning Document

Executive Summary

The purpose of this document is to set out the Council's approach towards the provision of open space in new residential development. It supplements Policy GE1 of the adopted Local Plan, which states: "New development proposals should make provision for Green Infrastructure to ensure that such development is integrated into the landscape and contributes to improvements in connectivity and public access, biodiversity, landscape conservation, design, archaeology and recreation."

The Council's approach can be summarised as follows:

The Council will ensure that all new residential development makes appropriate provision for new or enhanced open space. The Council's minimum size standard for new open space will be 0.1 hectares, as shown in chapter 4 of this document and in line with thresholds set out in the Green Space Strategy. This will apply to all residential development involving 10 or more dwellings or exceeding 1ha in gross site area. Although on-site provision will be encouraged on smaller schemes, the Council accepts that a financial contribution towards off-site provision or enhancement of existing open space may be more appropriate.

If the quantitative requirement is greater than or equal to the minimum size standard (0.1ha), that requirement should be delivered on-site. If the quantitative requirement is lower than the minimum size standard, an off-site contribution which is equivalent to that requirement will be sought. Site contributions for the improvement of an existing open space will be equivalent to the quantitative requirement calculated using the method set out in Table 6.

There will be a general presumption in favour of on-site provision of public open space, unless there are valid reasons why this cannot or should not be achieved e.g. the site is too small or through consultation with the Parks Service there is a demonstrable surplus of existing open space in the locality.

As set out in Local Plan Policy DS4 General Masterplan Principles, the delivery of open spaces should be provided in a strategic, coherent and co-ordinated manner.

The provision of public open space or a financial contribution towards open space, including maintenance, will be secured through a Section 106 legal agreement or planning condition.

This document provides the basis for establishing public open spaces as part of new developments. It provides details on national and local policy and the mechanism by which open space must be provided.

The document provides a series of examples from which stakeholders can calculate the amount of open space their specific proposals would generate per 1000 population.

The document also provides commentary and guidance on the provision of Sustainable Urban Drainage systems (SUD's) and how to integrate both public open space, the water environment and biodiversity.