Greater Nottingham Strategic Plan - Preferred Approach Consultation (January 2023)

Greater Nottingham Strategic Plan: Preferred Approach

Chapter Four: Proposed Planning Strategy

4.1 The planning strategy follows from the Vision and the Objectives set out in Chapter Three. It is aspirational but realistic, and has been positively prepared to meet the development and infrastructure needs of Greater Nottingham. It provides a framework and context for the other policies of the Plan.

4.2 The Preferred Approach to the strategy and settlement hierarchy is included below:

PreferredĀ Approach: Planning Strategy and Settlement Hierarchy

4.2.1 Sustainable Development in the Plan area will be achieved through:

  1. Ensuring development maximises opportunities to enhance the Blue and Green Infrastructure network and incorporates Blue and Green Infrastructure into new development;
  2. Promoting urban living through prioritising sites for development firstly within the main built up area of Nottingham, and to a lesser extent adjoining it;
  3. Ensuring that new development adjoining the built up area of Hucknall, or in or adjoining Key Settlements, is of a scale and character that supports these as sustainable locations for growth;
  4. Creating sustainable and attractive places with an enhanced quality of life for residents through implementing a '20-minute neighbourhood' approach; and
  5. Maximising the economic development potential of key sites including the former Ratcliffe on Soar Power Station, Toton and the wider Broad Marsh area.

4.2.2 The settlement hierarchy to accommodate this growth consists of:

  1. the main built up area of Nottingham;
  2. adjacent to the Sub Regional Centre of Hucknall; and
  3. Key Settlements.

4.2.3 In other settlements development will be smaller scale as defined in Part 2 Local Plans.

4.3 The Preferred Approach sets out how sustainable development will be achieved. Enhancing Blue and Green Infrastructure contributes to achieving sustainable development by providing a vital multifunctional resource capable of delivering a wide range of environmental and quality of life benefits for local communities. Blue and Green Infrastructure creates high quality environments and well-designed places which promote healthy and safe communities. It provides recreational opportunities which are attractive to business and investors, mitigate climate change through carbon storage, cooling and shading, and natural flood risk mitigation, and conserve and enhance the natural environment. New development will provide opportunities to further enhance the Blue and Green Infrastructure network and should be carried out following the principles set out in the Blue-Green Infrastructure Strategy.

4.4 The focus on urban living through prioritising sites within the main built up area, and to a lesser extent adjoining it, seeks to achieve sustainable growth by making the most of existing infrastructure and reducing the need to travel. It will use the range of facilities and services which are provided within the City and town centres and will provide opportunities to redevelop brownfield sites and drive regeneration of parts of the urban area. However, it is recognised that there are potentially harmful effects of 'town cramming' of urban intensification if they are overdeveloped.

4.5 The Sub Regional Centre of Hucknall (in Ashfield District) abuts the plan area. Hucknall is relatively large and has its own distinct identity and economic role.

4.6 In Gedling, Key Settlements have been identified as sustainable and accessible locations which provide, or have the potential to provide through infrastructure improvements, key facilities and services. New development in these locations will vary depending on a range of factors including Green Belt, local regeneration needs and the level of growth capable of being accommodated, taking into account infrastructure constraints. In Broxtowe and Rushcliffe, the delivery of new homes at the Key Settlements over the plan period will be achieved through a combination of sites which have already been allocated by the Part 2 Local Plans and sites within the settlements which already have planning permission or come forward as infill sites. It is not proposed that any further land adjacent to any of the Key Settlements in Broxtowe and Rushcliffe is allocated for housing development during the plan period.

4.7 The '20 minute neighbourhood' approach seeks to create places in which most of people's daily needs can be met within a short walk or cycle. The impact of Covid has emphasised the importance of attractive, safe, walkable environments in which people of all ages can access destinations that they visit and the services they need to use day to day. These include shopping, school, community and healthcare facilities, places of work and green spaces. Creating these places has significant physical and mental health benefits to residents. This approach follows the principles set out in Town and Country Planning Association's Guide to 20 Minute Neighbourhoods such as:

  • diverse and affordable homes;
  • well connected paths, streets and spaces;
  • schools at the heart of communities;
  • good green spaces in the right places;
  • local food production;
  • keeping jobs and money local;
  • community health and wellbeing facilities; and
  • a place for all ages.

4.8 Ratcliffe on Soar Power Station and Toton fall within the East Midlands Development Corporation area and are key areas identified for economic growth. Ratcliffe on Soar Power Station, which also forms part of the East Midlands Freeport, will be transformed into an international centre for the development of zero carbon technology. Toton, in combination with Chetwynd, will provide a mixture of homes and jobs and will include new green spaces, enhancing connections between the existing communities. The Broad Marsh area is one of the most significant City Centre development sites in the UK and will create new homes, commercial space and a substantial area of green space.

4.9 The settlement hierarchy set out in Part 2 of the proposed strategy reflects the role and size of the urban areas. Nottingham and its built up area is of national and regional importance in terms of its size and economy. The Sub Regional Centre of Hucknall (in Ashfield District) is relatively large and has its own distinct identity and economic role. The Key Settlements have been locally defined, based on their role, function and planning policy considerations.

4.10 The concentration of development in or adjoining the main built up area of Nottingham applies across the area, rather than to individual Council areas, so the proportion of growth in or adjoining the main built up area will vary between the Councils.

4.11 Outside of the Key Settlements, development at other settlements will be of a smaller scale, to be defined in Part 2 Local Plans.