Views sought on once-in-a-lifetime plan for Harlow’s future

Date: 
Thursday, 24 May, 2018
Number: 
18-24

Harlow Council welcomes the views of local residents, groups and businesses on its Local Development Plan before it is submitted for final examination by the Government.

Harlow’s Local Development Plan will guide future development across the town and provide a strategy for growing Harlow and regenerating the town up to 2033. It sets out where development is acceptable and unacceptable as the Council looks to build a better town for all.

The plan seeks to build on the town’s Garden Town status, Public Health England’s relocation to Harlow, Enterprise Zone developments and new M11 Junction 7a, ensuring that the right infrastructure is in place at the right time to support new housing and future employment opportunities. The plan also stresses the need for a new, fit-for-purpose hospital serving the town and ensuring that community facilities and services match Harlow’s needs and ambitions for the future.

Based on an assessment of housing need, the plan allocates 9,200 homes within the Harlow Boundary up to 2033 with at least 30% affordable housing.  

There are a number of important issues highlighted in previous consultations, which are covered in the plan. They include what new infrastructure is required, where and how much new housing there will be and how green spaces will be protected. In addition it sets out a strategy to assist in the provision of the Harlow and Gilston Garden Communities with East Hertfordshire and Epping Forest District Councils.

Councillor Danny Purton, Portfolio Holder for Environment, said:

“I believe this plan is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Harlow, a plan that can make our town’s potential a reality. If we want to continue improving our town, providing much-needed housing and employment and creating new opportunities for local people, future generations and businesses, then we need a Local Development Plan that supports Harlow’s development, aspirations and growth for the future.

“This plan makes sure that Harlow has the right mix of new homes, business spaces, shops, education and health and leisure facilities to meet the needs of residents and businesses. The Plan also provides protection for Harlow’s green spaces and the environment by making sure that new buildings respect Harlow’s new town heritage and any traffic implications are minimised.

“I am also determined to improve the street environment for existing residents and have opened negotiations with Essex County Council about taking back control of our estate roads. If we are to avoid increasing traffic problems on the town’s roads, we need to bring forward proposals for a new transportation system which will encourage other sustainable modes of travel including walking, cycling and public transport with less reliance on the use of cars.

“The important opportunities for redevelopment of the Town Centre are being addressed in a separate Area Action Plan which I will bring forward within the next few months.”

The Plan is a result of much detailed work and follows several public consultations on policies which support the plan that have been held over recent years. This is the last formal consultation on the plan before it is submitted to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government later this year for examination.

The five themes of the Plan are:

  • Placeshaping – enhancing the quality of the built and natural environment.
  • Housing – building housing at the right scale, of the right type, in the right location to meet the whole community’s needs.
  • Prosperity – securing economic growth and regeneration to improve employment and educational opportunities in Harlow.
  • Lifestyles – meeting leisure, recreational and cultural needs.
  • Infrastructure – ensuring growth and regeneration is supported by appropriate infrastructure provision such as the right facilities, enhanced public transport and – links to developments beyond our existing boundaries.

More about the pre-submission publication, the policies map setting out where development is acceptable and all supporting documents can be viewed at www.harlow.gov.uk/local-plan

These documents are also available to view, during normal office hours, at Harlow Civic Centre, Latton Bush Centre and within Harlow’s Libraries.

The consultation starts on Thursday 24 May 2018 and will run for six weeks until Friday 6 July 2018. Residents, businesses and groups can submit comments at www.harlow.gov.uk/local-plan-publication or alternatively by post to: The Forward Planning, Team, Harlow Council, Water Gardens, Harlow, Essex, CM20 1WG, or email myharlow@harlow.gov.uk.

Once adopted the Harlow Local Development Plan will replace the 2006 Harlow Local Plan.