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Development levy plan to be dropped

The planned levy on development that supporters claimed would help to fund infrastructure should be waived for house-building schemes in Bradford a planning inspector has ruled.

The move would help to regenerate brownfield sites in both places, the Government inspector said, even though Council estimates show it could cost the district more than £10 million in unrealised cash for roads, schools and services.

Bradford Council had been hoping to introduce the Community Infrastructure Levy in parts of the District at a rate of £5 per square metre in areas with low property values, rising to £100 psq in other area, such as Wharefedale.

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BPF Vice-Chair Marianne with Chair Allan Booth (centre)

Bradford Property Forum had long argued that this would put some schemes – already close to being unviable due to low profit margins – in jeopardy.  Planning Inspector Louise Nurser has taken that same view, vindicating the work of the Chamber-backed business group.

Marianne McCallum, Vice-Chair of  BPF and Associate Director with Turley, said:

“The Property Forum made representations to the Council against the arbitrary charge of £5 psm for housing development in Bradford city centre and Keighley. Not only was this proposed charge contrary to the advice of the Council’s own advisers, it would have stifled development in two areas of the District where low land values could not support the very substantial costs involved in bringing back into use derelict and contaminated brownfield land. We wholeheartedly support the Planning Inspector’s conclusions to set the CIL charge at nil for the city centre and Keighley. This approach recognises the need to build new homes while recognising the difficult viability challenges faced in these parts of the District.”

Read more on this on the T&A website here.

Written on 8th February 2017Mike Cartwright. Published in Bradford Council, Current Issues, Infrastructure, Lobbying, News