LETTER: Flawed, botched and hurried plan

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Reading the document approved by Horsham councillors in May about Cllr Dawe and Croft’s proposals to wreck the northern green boundary of Horsham by building in excess of 2,500 houses, a hypermarket, industrial park and more – it has always been my concern that this project would go ahead (if approved) without putting the necessary infrastructure in place as a first step. By infrastructure I mean essential services such as roads, schools, sewage, drainage, power etc.

I was therefore interested to read Southern Water’s response to the consultation (Pro Sub 2853). Southern Water states that more infrastructure would be needed for water/wastewater.

They also say that none of the policies encourage new/improved utility infrastructure: ‘Southern Water is unable to support the Horsham District Planning Framework as sound because it fails to support the delivery of water and wastewater infrastructure improvements. New and improved water supply and wastewater infrastructure will be required to serve the development proposed in Horsham District’s Planning Framework Preferred Strategy, or to meet stricter quality standards in the treatment of water and wastewater. Depending on the exact location of development, this is likely to include improved local sewers and water mains, and potentially strategic assets such as trunk sewers, pumping stations and treatment works. Delivery of infrastructure improvements needs to be supported by Local Plan polices, planning consents and, in the case of wastewater treatment, effluent discharge consents from the Environment Agency. This is reflected by the National Planning Policy Framework which states that ‘Local planning authorities should set out strategic priorities… to deliver… the provision of infrastructure for… water supply, wastewater…’

Didn’t Cllrs Dawe, Vickers, Croft and Rae think of this when they drew up what increasingly looks like a flawed, botched and hurried plan.

By uniquely reducing the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) on the developer that wins the contract for North Horsham (if it goes through) from £125 per square metre to £50 psm, it is estimated that HDC will lose over £10 million. So where is this infrastructure money to come from?

R. BAKER

New Moorhead Drive, Horsham