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National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) Update

A new updated version of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) was published this week by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

Some of the key changes are as follows:

  • Prioritising development on brownfield sites and densification of larger towns and cities. Michael Gove in announcing the updated Framework mentioned Cambridge as an area for continued growth stating that “It is going to set the standard for how we protect and preserve what makes a city special and also how we design and equip it for the century ahead.”
  • Increased status for Neighbourhood Plans in determining planning applications for housing providing they contain policies and allocations to meet an identified housing requirement.
  • Local planning authorities are not required to identify and update annually a supply of specific deliverable sites sufficient to provide a minimum of five years’ worth of housing for decision making purposes if certain criteria are met.
  • Continuous referencing to achieving or recognising ‘beautiful’ designs and the wider landscape.
  • Emphasis on upwards development in urban areas for residential and commercial premises where the development would be consistent with the existing height and form of the surrounding area. Including allowing ‘mansard roof extensions’ on suitable properties.
  • Further emphasis on new sites for large residential schemes to be put forward through allocated sites in new or updated local plans.
  • The new NPPF also clarifies that there is no expectation for Green Belt boundaries to be reviewed during local plan-making, unless there are exceptional circumstances.
  • General support for the development of smaller sites and new emphasis on community led development(s).

To discuss these changes or any planning related matters please contact our team of expert planning consultants.