Spelthorne Local Plan - Issues & Options

Spelthorne Local Plan Issues & Options consultation paper

Infrastructure

It will be no good building the houses, offices, commercial and retail premises we need if the infrastructure is not in place to support the growth and the needs of new and existing residents. Local infrastructure provision is therefore a key element of the spatial planning approach to ensure that current and future demands are met.

Local planning authorities are required to set out within their plans the infrastructure that is needed to support the level of development being proposed. The infrastructure planning process needs to identify not only the infrastructure that is required but also the cost and phasing of delivery, how it will be funded and who is responsible for delivery.

Spelthorne will need to work with other authorities and service providers to assess the quality and capacity of all our infrastructure. Where necessary we will also need to take account of the need for strategic infrastructure including nationally significant infrastructure such as that associated with the expansion of Heathrow.

Types of infrastructure and delivery agencies

The following are the types of essential community infrastructure required to support the growth in population in Spelthorne by 2035:

  • Electricity and gas
  • Emergency services (fire/police/ambulance)
  • Green infrastructure (networks of multi-functional natural green space that support biodiversity, health and wellbeing)
  • Leisure (sports facilities defined as publicly owned leisure centres, gyms and swimming pools)
  • Health (including local health and clinics)
  • Education (including early education, primary and secondary schools, further education)
  • Highways and transport
  • Library services
  • Community facilities (community centres and meeting places)
  • Waste management and disposal facilities
  • Water and sewerage

The County Council, working with the Borough Council, is responsible for providing some of these types of infrastructure, notably education and highways. The funding of infrastructure is primarily the responsibility of the service provider, however the use of developer contributions and Community Infrastructure Levy receipts will be essential in helping to ensure that the necessary infrastructure is provided in the right place and at the right time.

In assessing the existing and future needs the Council will, wherever possible, use local and national targets to understand whether there is, or will be, a deficit of provision. In some circumstances there are agreed national standards set by Government against which to assess provision. For example, the requirement for school class sizes determines how many extra classes are needed to support a growth in population. For other services local standards will be agreed that reflect the nature of the service and population it serves. In addition to the standards set, the Council will use forward planning documents produced by service providers to establish the potential impact of the expected level of population growth. This process will help us determine whether there is a need for new infrastructure, the additional amount required and the potential cost of delivery.