Revisions to North Horsham housing plans submitted

Liberty Property Trust's latest plans for North of Horsham development SUS-160930-104412001
Liberty Property Trust's latest plans for North of Horsham development SUS-160930-104412001

Revisions to plans for up to 2,750 new homes and a business park north of Horsham have been published.

Liberty Property Trust submitted its planning application on land north of the A264 last summer but has made a number of amendments earlier this month.

The developer has altered the mix of housing sizes, provided extra information on ecology, and has also attempted to overcome an objection from Sport England on sport and recreational facilities.

The council’s affordable housing target is 35 per cent, but Liberty is proposing just 30 per cent ‘housing for local needs’.

Only 12.7 per cent would be affordable rented housing, with 5.3 per cent shared ownership units, totalling just 18 per cent.

The rest of the 30 per cent would be made up by private rented sector housing, included at 85 per cent of open market value (OMV), and discount market sales, sold at an average of 85 per cent OMV.

However the revised application has reduced the number of discount market dwellings by 30 and instead included 30 custom build units, and changed the size split of private rented sector housing, now described as build to rent, reducing the number of three-bedroom flats, and increasing the amount of one and two-bedroom apartments.

Evidence has also been submitted from the McLaren Clark Group to support the level of ‘family’ market housing included in the application.

Liberty is looking for permission for 39 one-bedroom flats, 97 two-bedroom flats, 230 two-bed houses, 731 three-bed houses, 731 four-bedroom houses, and 97 five-bed houses.

In a letter to Liberty, director Daniel McLaren-Clark said: “I believe there are obvious locations where a higher proportion of smaller dwellings would be appropriate such as town centre sites, but edge of settlement locations or extensions to existing settlements like North Horsham are simply not as practical a location or appropriate in this regard and lend themselves far more readily to family housing.”

According to the updated application a number of comments have emphasised the importance of healthcare facilities in the new development, with Liberty ‘responding positively engaging’ with the Horsham and Mid Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group to enable the required facilities to be provided.

In its original response the CCG described how the new homes would need a new primary care centre, or as an alternative it suggested a contribution of £1.7m towards healthcare infrastructure improvements.

Liberty’s application includes the ‘potential for healthcare provision within or adjacent to the proposed local centre’.

However one objector has already written to the council suggesting there is ‘no evidence’ of progress towards ensuring adequate access to healthcare for new residents, with only a ‘vague reference’ to the CCG’s consultation response.

They added: “Since then, nothing more has been added to the concerns expressed by Horsham Clinical Commissioning Group about the lack of resources to meet demand and that existing residents are not disadvantaged when their GP cannot offer them a timely appointment due to the thousands of new residents this development will create.”

To comment visit using code DC/16/1677.

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