Planning Obligations SPD 2020

Ended on the 5th February 2021
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6. COMMUNITY FACILITIES

6.1 The importance of community facilities is recognised in paragraph 92 of the NPPF in its important role in fostering community cohesion. For the purposes of this SPD, a community facility is defined as a building or space where community led activity for community benefit is held. Community facilities can be in a wide range of venues and include for example, places of worship, town and village halls, purpose built community centres, sports centres and clubs as well as adapted venues, including historic listed buildings, converted houses, flats, shops, scout huts and rooms or halls attached to faith buildings.

Justification

6.2 Adequate provision of and capacity in local facilities (e.g. community centres of a size to accommodate activities for all community members which include children & young people, families, adults and older people) is important in order to meet the additional demands arising from new development. Financial contributions will be sought and pooled to meet the following types of capital projects which increase the capacity of community facilities including those related to:

  • New community facilities;
  • Extensions of community facilities;
  • Refurbishment of community facilities to increase their use;
  • Feasibility studies and Professional Costs (associated with identified and evidenced capital projects);
  • Improvement of access to community facilities.

6.3 Larger Developments, for example, with over 1,000 new residents may generate the need for a new multi-purpose community hall or other new community facilities as a resource to meet the needs of the new community. In this circumstance, a developer would be expected to make a contribution which may take the form of a suitable site and meet the construction costs of a new building to a specification agreed at the time of application.

6.4 Much of the development in Harborough District is at a smaller scale yet should still be expected to contribute to community needs generated by additional development, by helping to expand or develop existing levels of provision. At the time of a planning application being received, the District Council in conjunction with Town/Parish Councils will assess the proposed development against the existing levels of provision in the community and submit evidence of need for additional community facilities in the area arising from the proposed development.

Level of Contribution to Community Facilities

6.5 The level of contributions required to provide additional community facilities are set out in the Community Facilities Assessment 2017, completed by Peter Brett Associates. This updates the Roger Tym & Partners Community Facilities Study (2010). The updated document has informed the infrastructure evidence base for the adopted Local Plan and informed updates to the developer contributions policy for community buildings.

Allocation of funding for community facilities

6.6 The Council operates a community led approach to allocating funding for community projects and off-site recreation contributions to take account of community needs and aspirations which occur directly at the time when the development is proceeding. This is in order to deliver the obligations for community provision which help to make it acceptable in planning terms. An application system operates and further details are contained on the District Council's website.

For further information on planning obligations for community facilities please contact:

Community Partnerships Team, Harborough District Council

Tel: 01858 828282 

Question 6

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