We have approved the West Harrogate Parameters Plan that provides a clear vision for new development and identifies what infrastructure is required to support future communities in west Harrogate.
The West Harrogate Parameters Plan (WHPP) has been developed following discussions between the borough council, county council, developers and site promoters, along with community groups, parish councils and stakeholders.
Feedback provided through the various engagement opportunities has led to a number of changes to the WHPP being made. These amends have also been approved today and will be incorporated into the published version of the WHPP to support the implementation of policies within the Harrogate district Local Plan.
West Harrogate has been identified through the Local Plan as a suitable location to support the development of sustainable housing growth and will provide well designed, distinctive neighbourhoods where people want to live, work and play.
The WHPP identifies what infrastructure is required to support these future communities in west Harrogate and will be used for assessing the planning merits of development schemes. It also ensures that developers work collaboratively to make sure that comprehensive, well thought out, sustainable and cohesive developments are created.
12 key design principles have been developed to guide the development of masterplans for sites in West Harrogate, these include;
- natural connections
- walking, cycling and public transport
- facilities and services to create vibrant neighbourhoods
- homes for everyone
- making the most of what is there
- creating a memorable character
- well-defined streets and spaces
- a neighbourhood that is easy to navigate and understand
- creating healthy streets
- successfully accommodating cycle and car parking
- green and blue infrastructure
- back of pavement, front of home
All 12 of these key design principles have a number of aims and objectives - that will support the vision of the WHPP and provide a lasting legacy that existing and new residents will be proud of for many generations to come.
Councillor Tim Myatt, Harrogate Borough Council's cabinet member for planning, said: "The West Harrogate Parameters Plan will ensure we have the necessary infrastructure to support these future communities on the west side of Harrogate.
"Including the delivery of two new primary schools, four playing pitches, and two new local centres for shops and health services. There will also be land designated for employment, as well as new cycle lanes, footpaths and bus routes. The parameters plan ensures.
"A number of suggestions have helped shaped the West of Harrogate Parameters Plan and I'd like to thank stakeholders - and especially local community groups and residents' associations - for their valuable feedback.
"This engagement has played an integral part in ensuring we have been able to produce a plan that clearly identifies what infrastructure is required, whether that's community facilities, school provision, green infrastructure or sustainable travel opportunities, for example.
"It also sets a benchmark for future developments across the Harrogate district and ensures that we not only deliver much needed homes but also create communities that residents can be proud of to call home."
Approximately 2,000 homes have been identified through the Local Plan for West Harrogate. The WHPP supports the sustainable and coordinated development of these, along with the addition of two new primary schools, sport pitches, community facilities, areas of biodiversity – wildlife habits and playing fields, for example - as well as associated infrastructure requirements.
County Councillor Don Mackenzie, executive member for access at North Yorkshire County Council, said: "North Yorkshire will continue to work closely with the borough council as a key partner responsible for services like education, highways and transport.
"We will support investment in the local highways infrastructure, as is already taking place on Otley Road, but will place the greatest priority on the provision of excellent public transport and facilities for walking and cycling."
Following today's approval, the council will now begin preparing a West Harrogate Infrastructure Delivery Strategy (WHIDS) that will provide more detail about infrastructure requirements for West Harrogate and associated costs.
The WHIDS will include a review of existing capacity and timings for the phasing of key infrastructure, including; education provision, health and wellbeing services, water and drainage, sport and playing fields provision, highways and open spaces.
The WHIDS, due for completion in May, will also be used to help inform Section 106 agreements.
Cllr Myatt added: "Now that the WHPP has been approved, we need to begin the detailed work about how it should be delivered at the right time and in the right place, to ensure a high-quality and sustainable community is established from the outset.
"This is truly is an exciting time to create successful communities and neighbourhoods in the west of Harrogate and I would once again like to thank those who have helped shape this vision."
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