Spelthorne Local Plan - Preferred Options Consultation: Policies and Site Allocations

Comment ID pol/238
Document Section Spelthorne Local Plan Preferred Options: policies Spatial policies Policy SP7: Heathrow Airport View all on this section
Respondent Heathrow Airport (Mr Stephen Allen) View all by this respondent
Response Date 21 Jan 2020

We welcome the inclusion of Policy SP7 and in particular the in-principle support it provides for the sustainable expansion of Heathrow Airport. We support the Council’s commitment to working strategically with local authorities around the airport, and we place value on the role and work of the Heathrow Strategic Planning Group (HSPG), including the Council’s membership of this forum. We consider the points outlined in a), b) and d) to be a reasonable position and do not suggest any substantive changes to the policy detail. However, paragraphc) relating to inappropriate development in the Green Belt is not considered appropriate or
necessary for a policy specifically dealing with Heathrow Airport and should be deleted from the policy. The Green Belt is sufficiently protected by policy E1, therefore policy SP7 paragraph c) does not and should not add any additional policy tests or protection.
We also suggest that reference should be made to the Airports National Policy Statement (ANPS) as the overarching policy basis for decision making on Heathrow expansion in accordance with National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) paragraph 5. To ensure the Plan is to be found sound, policy SP7 must be consistent with and must not introduce additional tests to those set in the ANPS. The policy needs to reference the draft DCO limits boundary and that the Council will resist any development which may prejudice the future development of the airport in accordance with the ANPS.

Annex 1: Proposed changes to policy SP7: Heathrow Airport

The Council will support in principle the sustainable expansion of Heathrow Airport in accordance with the Airports National Policy Statement (ANPS). The ANPS sets out the policy framework for expansion at Heathrow Airport and is the primary basis for decision making on any development consent order (DCO) application for the proposed north-west runway and associated development. Outside of this DCO process, the Council will support the expansion of Heathrow Airport by:

(a) working strategically with local authorities around Heathrow Airport.
(b) permitting development proposals outside the airport or Development Consent Order (DCO) Limits boundary in the Borough for Airport Supporting Development (ASD) particularly those that support economic development provided that they:
i. protect and enhance designated areas of existing environmental character including Sites of Nature Conservation Importance, areas of landscape value, the Borough’s historic and cultural heritage (including historic buildings and Conservation Areas), habitats particularly within Biodiversity Opportunity Areas and open space of amenity and recreation value;
ii. demonstrate ecological offsetting and mitigation measures where necessary;
iii. where necessary ensure safeguards are in place to mitigate air, noise, light and other pollution in the Borough arising from the development proposals; and
iv. offer the highest quality design of buildings and structures.
(c) resisting inappropriate development in the Green Belt unless the harm is outweighed by very special circumstances.
(d) supporting initiatives that encourage modal shift towards more sustainable forms of transport such as:
i. promoting sustainable transport choices which reduce the need to travel by car;
ii. improving surface access to minimise airport related traffic (congestion) in the Borough as a whole;
iii. promoting initiatives such as car sharing/clubs, the use of electric vehicles, low emission cars and colleague shuttle buses from the surrounding areas; and
iv. supporting southern rail access including the promotion of the Southern Light Rail (SLR) where there is benefit to communities in the Borough and the wider strategic network.
(e) consulting Heathrow Airport Limited on any planning applications for development within the draft Development Consent Order (DCO) Limits boundary, which will not be approved if they would prejudice proposals for the expansion of the airport in
accordance with the ANPS.

Proposed Change