There is another consultation open at WODC. Yes, another consultation. This one is on a codification of the developer contributions which are required when a new development is built, in order to support infrastructure.
It is a complex and technical area, and the document explains it simply.
There isn’t room to summarise here other than to explain that there are two main forms of developer contribution including the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and ‘planning obligations’ which include Section 106 and Section 278 agreements. In some instances, planning conditions which are attached to a planning permission can also be used to deliver infrastructure.
The consultation ends on 21 December.
It is absolutely imperative that before property is developed, there must be infrastructure to support the extra burden on a locality. Affordable homes, schools, roads, bridges, parks, drainage, etc. In Eynsham, with the developments of the Garden Village and West of Eynsham, we know that this isn’t happening in practice. Part of the reason is that developers are very good at claiming that if they paid more, then their projects wouldn’t be viable. Frankly this isn’t acceptable, and nor is WODC helping by agreeing in advance that major developments, like the ones here, will have CiL charged at 0%. We should care much more about supporting residents with affordable homes and liveable localities than with making sure that developers make their profits.
On top of this, the Government has put out a white paper suggesting changes to the planning system that will give even more power to developers, will reduce the ability of local authorities and residents to shape new building, and will reduce the amount developers pay for infrastructure. WODC has objected to this white paper in a strongly worded document. That makes a welcome change.