E8Sites for Office Development
T1Public Transport Access for Developments
T12Convenient and Safe Pedestrian Movement
T31Car Parking and Development
T40Transport Impact of Development
T41Development which generates traffic
T45Parking for car users with disabilities
T51Design of Parking and Servicing Area
T52Car parking for Social Housing
T63Design of Parking and Service Areas
The principle of use of this site for a mix of office and residential uses with a predominately residential element was established by the granting of planning permission on the site in 2001. An earlier proposal to convert the entire Bromyard House into residential units was resisted on loss of employment grounds and upheld on appeal in March 2002. The approved scheme provides for the retention of office use (5,635 sq m) within almost an entire wing of Bromyard House. Additional office floorspace of 4,659 to be provided as part of the scheme in a new building on the north east side of the site has almost been completed.
This revised proposal broadly retains the approved quantum of development in terms of the proportions of office to residential use. As set out in the description of the proposal above, the principal changes are to the number, mix and internal layout of the residential elements and the associated physical works. As a result, the issues raised by the amendments to the approved scheme relate to the mix of units including affordable housing, design, amenity, transport and environmental assessment considerations.
Residential mix including affordable housing
The increase in total housing provision from 408 to 526 represents 118 units of additional residential accommodation. The latter includes 54 units of affordable housing increasing the number of total affordable housing units form 130 to 186.
As originally proposed the increase was achieved by reducing the number of larger units and replacing them with smaller units. The applicant’s supporting statement referred to the change in emphasis as a response to a high market demand for that type of accommodation.
In negotiations on the revisions officers have sought to maximise the amount of affordable housing in the scheme and, in particular in relation to this element, achieve the inclusion of a proportion of larger units. The number of affordable units as a percentage of the overall increased number (46%) is higher than the 32 % achieved in the original permission, and close to the 50% target included in the new UDP and draft London Plan. Although the overall proportion of affordable housing in the revised scheme as a whole is now 35%, this has to be seen in the context of the previous permission that has already been granted and partially implemented and is an increase on the previous overall proportion.
The Council’s housing need survey 1999 – 200 estimates that 1982 affordable housing units per annum are required with a deficiency of about 389 three bed units each year. The provision in the revised scheme of 21 3-bed units (compared with only 5 in the previous permission) will help meet this.
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