Agenda and draft minutes
Venue: (Remote Meeting) Via Zoom
To receive the notes of the previous meeting held on 6 October
The notes of the meeting held on 6 October 2021 were received by the Group.
Interview with the Planning Policy Team Leader
The Group interviewed the Horsham District Council Planning Policy Team Leader regarding the strategic plans underpinning the District Local Plan and the extent to which Sustainable Transport Issues were reflected therein.
The Planning Policy Team Leader provided an overview of the key documents relating to the Local Transport Plan:
- The Transport Study, developed with a specialist Agency. This focused on strategic sites and reflected the views of the principal partner, West Sussex County Council. The study was intended to reduce the need for travel, while improving transport and travel links in line with the principles of “Mobility as a service”.
- The IDP (Infrastructure Delivery Plan) drew from the findings of the Transport Study to identify desirable, achievable, and costed proposals. This document also reflected the views of the Transport Authority.
The draft Policy 41 was included in the Local Plan reviewed by the Cabinet in July, but was subsequently withdrawn from the full Council meeting
The Group discussed aspects of the Study and Policies and raised a number of comments and concerns, including
- The study was used by the specialist Agency to assess the impact of a number of development scenarios on the local highway network. It was also used to inform the mitigation strategy required to support the Local Plan and inform more detailed junction modelling, using industry standard modelling packages, Models have been developed to represent potential impacts at the end of the Local Plan period (2038), for the AM (0800-0900) and PM (1700-1800) peak hours. The model was based on motor vehicle traffic: a true multi-modal study would have been too expensive.
- Concern that there remained a disproportionate emphasis on the management of existing and growing traffic volumes at the expense of a greater push towards alternative travel options and behavioural change. These are seen as an ancillary to the main policy, rather than the core.
- The published Policy 41 is set at a high strategic level and, as such, does not contain sufficiently hard or site-specific measures. It is not sufficiently strong to make developers responsibilities clear. The Gear Change document is seen as a much stronger mechanism than the HDC policy
- 2021 Population data was unavailable, but the latest measures of car use and ownership will be a significant factor in strategic and specific considerations.
- The Car Parking Calculator, developed by WSCC, indicated that Horsham, as a largely rural district, was well above the National and county averages levels.
- Developers should be required more explicitly to develop studies and actions delivering Active Travel principles.
The Planning Policy Team Leader informed the group thatthe purpose of the policy was to provide a framework applicable to large and small developments alike. The level of detail in the Policy is constrained by the practicalities of size but sets out the considerations necessary for more detailed and specific developments. The current policy addressed concerns regarding road traffic levels while seeking to promote and support alternatives that would require more societal ... view the full minutes text for item 17.
It was agreed that the next meeting would take place at 4pm on 23 November.