Demand for new homes across Arun rises again

Arun District Council director for planning and economic regeneration Karl Roberts and planning policy team leader David Coleman assess a map of sites being tested as part of the local plan SUS-161110-162257001
Arun District Council director for planning and economic regeneration Karl Roberts and planning policy team leader David Coleman assess a map of sites being tested as part of the local plan SUS-161110-162257001

More than 900 new homes are required annually up until 2031 to meet demand across Arun, new figures have revealed.

Changes in population data have indicated a need for 919 homes per annum until 2031 – 74 homes a year greater than previously anticipated.

Arun’s local plan now faces a further three-month delay.

Councillor Ricky Bower, cabinet member for planning and infrastructure, said: “The local plan is vitally important because it sets out where houses and infrastructure are to be built over the next 16 years.

“Having an up to date local plan will give the council the ability to shape the future of the district and plan where and when development and infrastructure should be built.”

Councils use the annual figure as a starting point when preparing local plans, identifying sites to meet the demand. New data has seen Arun’s figure change several times.

The local plan, submitted in 2015, included a requirement of 580 homes per annum – but new statistics saw the plan suspended for more work.

Arun officers were this year working to an annual target of 845 homes. The new 919 figure represents an extra 1,480 homes.

Officers were already modelling a range of options up to 1,000 homes a year, in case the figure increased.

The latest change bears resemblance to difficulties Arun faced in 2015. New evidence emerged at an appeal to suggest the annual target should be higher.

Director of planning and economic regeneration Karl Roberts said: “Yes, we have learned lessons but as a council we have been unfortunate that a serious of changes have come along at the wrong time of which we couldn’t necessarily have predicted. This has meant we have had to revisit some things.”

Officers confirmed the change should not mean new housing sites were required.

It would, however, mean it was unlikely Arun would be able to meet shortfalls of other areas.

Modifications to the plan are now hoped to go before councillors in March. Public consultation would then take place in April. It could still be adopted in 2017.

Mr Roberts said the fact the plan was previously submitted meant it should not face government intervention because of the later timetable.

Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.

Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be amongst the first to know what’s going on.

1) Make our website your homepage

2) Like our Facebook page

3) Follow us on Twitter

4) Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.

And do share with your family and friends - so they don’t miss out!

Always the first with your local news.

Be part of it.