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Adams Hendry Planning & Built Environment News Round-Up -11th September 2018

The Adams Hendry News Round-Up highlights recent news and commentary relating to planning and the built environment.

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This week’s round up includes the first legal challenge against the revised NPPF, Tideway’s vision for new public space along the Thames, and the artificial islands proposed at Ebbsfleet Garden City.

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Only six weeks old and the Revised NPPF is already in the Administrative Court (Irwin Mitchell)

“Whilst I may have suggested* that it would not be long before we saw our first judicial review challenge centred on the Revised NPPF;  not even I thought it would happen this quickly.

First off the blocks in the race to challenge the Revised NPPF is the Friends of the Earth. The environmental campaign group has issued a press release** confirming that they are seeking permission to challenge the publication of the Revised NPPF. 

The challenge is based on the allegation that the government failed to carry out a strategic environmental assessment (SEA) of the policies contained in the Revised NPPF before publishing it - which, according to the press release, leaves "the public in the dark over the major environmental impacts of the new changes, and whether less damaging alternatives have been considered, discarded or considered at all”…”

 

Tideway unveils vision for new public space along the River Thames (Tideway)

“New images that offer a vision of how the River Thames will look in the future have been released by Tideway, the company building the Thames Tideway Tunnel.

The images depict seven new public spaces that are to be built as part of works to build the tunnel, more commonly referred to as London’s ‘super sewer’.

The 25km super sewer is a vital infrastructure project that will modernise London’s ageing sewage system and dramatically improve the environment by preventing millions of tonnes of sewage overflowing into the river each year. But for Tideway, it’s more than just cleaning up the river.

Sir Joseph Bazalgette, who designed London’s original sewer system over 150 years ago, built out onto the river creating the Victoria, Albert and Chelsea Embankments. Tideway will be honouring that legacy by also building out onto the river, creating seven new landscaped areas which will include sites at Chelsea, Albert, Victoria and Putney Embankments, as well as at Blackfriars Bridge, King Edward Memorial Park and Heathwall Pumping Station.

Parts of the new spaces at Victoria and Chelsea Embankments and at King Edward Memorial Park will be ‘floodable’ at high tides, giving Londoners the first opportunity of its kind to dip their toe in what will be a cleaner River Thames.”

 

Mass deployment of EVs in the UK requires infrastructure and regulatory overhaul (Intelligent Transport)

“Developing technologies around electric vehicles (EVs) are colliding more and more with UK energy regulatory and planning laws.

That was not always the case, but lawyers are receiving an increasing number of enquiries from utility providers, technology companies and regulatory bodies, many of which are seeking clarity on the interplay between grid-scale and local energy provision for EV charging networks, and for guidance on what other issues need to be considered.

When it comes to implementing new technologies, such as EVs and the necessary charging infrastructure, this requires a broad view across a number of legal practice areas.

As well as planning, interested parties must take account of regulatory, environmental, construction and procurement implications – areas they would not necessarily need to look at for what are often relatively small scale projects.

But because the EV industry is so novel, accommodating its expansion raises a number of issues about how different laws regulating energy, transport and development interact with each other, leading to the need for potentially radical reforms in the way these laws are interpreted and applied…”

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HBF urges Government to protect Help to Buy (Planning & Building Control Today)

“The Home Builders Federation (HBF) have released a new report highlighting the benefits of the Help to Buy scheme, urging the Government to maintain it

The new report by HBF states that the Help to Buy scheme has managed to achieve its targets by increasing home ownership, growing housing supply and generating economic viability.

The government is currently considering the merits of continuing the scheme, following criticism and claims that the initiative was benefitting wealthier households.

However, housebuilders want it to stay.

The HBF report reveals that 170,000 homes were purchased through the scheme between April 2013, when the scheme began, and March 2018. Of these, more than 80% were bought by first-time buyers.

The report also suggests that in total it is estimated to have enabled some 246,000 individuals to get on to the housing ladder, and despite claims from critics, the scheme is helping those it was set out to.”

 

Artificial islands similar to Dubai's Palm to be built on lake at Ebbsfleet Garden City (Kent Online)

“A piece of Dubai could be coming to north Kent after an ambitious proposal to reclaim inaccessible land pipped rival bids.

HALO (Hives, Arcs, Links, Organics) won Ebbsfleet Garden City's international design competition and is now set to become a centre piece of the 15,000-home development.

A series of artificial islands resembling the Arab state's world famous Palm would be created in a 12 hectare-wide lake, which is currently out of reach to residents.

The project would see the area transformed into "an oasis" where residents will be able to grow and pick their own fruit and vegetables, visit an adventure playground or take part in sporting activities.

The island will be linked by walkways and one of them would become an arts and culture hub, where open air productions and gigs could take place.

Floating hotel pods and an innovation area for start-up businesses would also be included as well as Ebbsfleet’s very own beach.

While 'eco islands' would bring wildlife to the site, with a series of insect hotels, bee hives and bat boxes installed.

Judges said HALO demonstrated exactly what they had hoped for — a design that was radical but achievable.”

 

Adams Hendry are recruiting

Due to an expanding workload of high profile infrastructure and development projects, we are looking for enthusiastic Planners and Senior Planners to join our team. Please see our website for more details: http://www.adamshendry.co.uk/join-us/

For more news follow us on Twitter @AdamsHendry, and LinkedIn.

To see how Adams Hendry can help you navigate the planning system, contact us by phone on 01962 877414, or by email at info@adamshendry.co.uk

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Contact

Suzanne Pidgeon, Technical Director 01962 877414 | s.pidgeon@adamshendry.co.uk