Future Mole Valley Local Plan Next Steps
On 28 November 2017, Mole Valley District Council's Executive will consider two reports focussing on preparation of the Future Mole Valley Local Plan. The results of the Local Plan's first public consultation will help inform which strategic options should be explored further. This will be considered alongside an updated programme for how work on the Local Plan will progress.
Councillor Duncan Irvine, Mole Valley District Council's Executive Member for Planning, said: "We need to make sure there is sufficient suitable land in Mole Valley to meet the forecast demand for housing. There are also issues to address around planning for commercial and retail uses. From July to September 2017, residents were invited to have their say on what their preferred options were to meet the District's development requirements. Now that the results of the Local Plan's first public consultation have been analysed, it is vital we use them to help inform which strategic options to take forward. A summary of the results is available at www.futuremolevalley.org
The Executive will consider the extent to which brownfield land can contribute to meeting the demand for housing in Mole Valley. Four brownfield options are recommended to be explored in more detail, including town centre redevelopment, limited reallocation of commercial and retail land, mixed-use redevelopment, and targeted increases in suburban densities. It is estimated that if taken forward, those four options combined could provide capacity for another 1,200 homes.
That number will not be enough however to meet the unmet housing demand of approximately 3,000 homes by 2033. We still need to look at other options. With neighbouring authorities unlikely to be able to accommodate any of the district's housing demand, it is necessary to look at greenfield options. Of the three greenfield options put forward in the consultation, urban extensions and expansion of one or more rural villages are recommended for further consideration.
In addition to these options, it is also recommended that modest housing additions are considered for rural villages. This is not so much to meet wider housing demand, although it would contribute towards that aim, but more to support the social and cultural resilience of our villages.
The timetable for progressing the Future Mole Valley Local Plan is set out in a document called the Local Development Scheme. This has been updated and the programme now proposed will also be considered by the Executive. The strategic development options that the Executive agree should be taken forward will be explored in more detail over the coming months so that a draft Local Plan can be published for public consultation in the latter half of 2018."