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Infrastructure levy for south Worcestershire gets official backing

The official report into a system for funding some of the infrastructure required under the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP) has been published today.

 

A public examination of the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) proposals for south Worcestershire was carried out last year by the Government’s Planning Inspectorate. The CIL scheme was drawn up in line with Government requirements by the three councils who produced the SWDP – Malvern Hills, Worcester City and Wychavon.

 

The report endorses the CIL charging rates, with only a very small number of modifications.

 

Under the CIL system, developers will have to pay a charge if they build: housing in rural areas; large scale retail schemes; or privately funded student accommodation. The money raised will be used to help fund essential local infrastructure such as transport schemes, flood defences, community facilities, green spaces and school places.

 

The CIL charge ranges from £40 per square metre for residential development to £100 psm for higher education. The scheme is expected to raise nearly £6 million over the lifetime of the SWDP up to 2030.

 

The report says that CIL will not be applied to two housing sites that had originally been included in the scheme – Cheltenham Road in Evesham and the QinetiQ site in Malvern. The report, published today at www.swdevelopmentplan.org, also makes some smaller technical changes to the south Worcestershire CIL scheme.

 

A revised version of the CIL document will now be prepared by the three councils and published at www.swdevelopmentplan.org on February 13. Printed copies will also be available at libraries and council contact centres in south Worcestershire.

 

Each of the three councils will then be asked to formally adopt the CIL proposals in May, with the charging schedules expected to come into force on June 1.

 

The SWDP provides a long term vision up to 2030 for south Worcestershire, with the emphasis on boosting the local economy and delivering sustainable development. It allocates land for the building of 28,400 new homes between 2006 and 2030.

 

CIL is just one of a wide range of funding sources for the infrastructure needed under the SWDP. Others sources potentially include central Government, Highways England, Severn Trent Water, the Environment Agency, the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, and financial contributions from developers under “Section 106 agreements” that are put in place when planning permission is granted.