Nottingham Post

Nottingham to fall short of its new homes target by 6,000


- By JOSEPH LOCKER Local Democracy Reporter

A LACK of space is to blame for an expected shortfall of 6,000 new homes in Nottingham, city council officials have said.

A new housing strategy, called the Greater Nottingham Strategic Plan, is being drawn up by a number of councils in a bid to meet future need.

The plan will cover the total area of Broxtowe Borough Council, Gedling Borough Council, Nottingham City Council and Rushcliffe Borough Council, which have all agreed to work together for a consistent approach. The Government uses something known as the ‘standard method’ to assess local housing need, taking into account expected household growth and historic under-supply.

However, because Nottingham is one of the largest urban local councils in the country, the standard method applies an arbitrary 35 per cent increase to its housing need. This means the city’s target is 32,868 homes, but the council says it can only provide 26,685 homes.

The shortfall of more than 6,000 has been put down to tight city boundaries and a lack of willingnes­s from the neighbouri­ng boroughs to take on extra demand due to green belt concerns. According to the plan the housing need for ‘Greater Nottingham’ as a whole, including Broxtowe, Gedling, the city and Rushcliffe, is 52,710 homes. The issue was discussed during a Housing Scrutiny Committee meeting on Monday.

Matt Gregory, the Head of Planning Strategy and Geographic Informatio­n, said: “For areas like Leeds, which is essentiall­y a city region within the local authority boundaries, it is relatively easy to provide 30 per cent uplift.”

Mr Gregory explained this was not the case for Nottingham. “Although we looked at this very closely we don’t think we can meet the entirety of the 30 per cent uplift in the city.

“You might wonder whether the districts would pick that need up for us. However they are arguing that because most of their authority areas, if not all, are on the green belt that makes it sensitive and they are struggling to provide for their own needs.”

In Nottingham, some of the main sites include the Boots site, where developmen­t has commenced for 600 homes, 207 within Nottingham and the remainder within Broxtowe, and Stanton Tip where 500 homes are proposed. There are also plans for 1,000 homes in the wider Greater Broad Marsh area.

Cllr Kevin Clarke, leader of the Nottingham Independen­ts and Independen­t Group, said: “These numbers in the Broadmarsh, do these include students?” The council has said before that student housing need is grouped with general housing need. However Sajeeda Rose, the Corporate Director for Growth and City Developmen­t, said: “At this stage it is looking at numbers without breaking down what those numbers are.

“No decision has been taken about what that might be. To some extent it is also about the market and seeing that within the wider context of the city plan of where other housing will be delivered. At this moment we have not said what that thousand consists of.”

Mr Gregory said he was “reasonably confident” the expected housing delivery in Nottingham would be deemed acceptable. However he said he could not be 100 per cent certain.

“However if the inspector does take a different view there are a number of routes open to them,” he added.

“They can demand we go back and look at our housing supply, our density assumption­s, the height of buildings that we think are appropriat­e, and see whether we could meet shortfall internally within the city.

“Alternativ­ely the inspector could say to the districts ‘you’ve got to provide this need within your area.’ If that scenario were to happen we would be in some quite difficult political territory.”

 ?? ?? There are plans for 1,000 homes in the Greater Broad Marsh area
There are plans for 1,000 homes in the Greater Broad Marsh area

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