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2. Policies and Proposals

2.1

INTRODUCTION

2.1.1

This section of the Plan sets out a range of planning policies and proposals that address the County’s specific land use related issues and opportunities. The scope of these policies is extremely varied, which in part reflects the County’s diverse urban and rural character, as described in the preceding section of the Plan.

2.1.2

The policies and proposals should be read in combination, and the Plan considered as a whole. Policies are supported by reasoned justifications that explain their purpose and set out how they are intended to be implemented.

2.1.3

Strategic Policies are those that relate to overarching core themes of the Plan. These are identifiable as being the policies with a light green background, and include:-

PS 1: Sustainable Places

PS 2: Placemaking and Place Management

PS 3: Sustainable Housing Strategy

PS 4: Sustainable Employment Strategy

SD 2: Masterplanning Principles

IO 1: Supporting Infrastructure 

H 2: Affordable Housing Strategy

HC 1: Historic and Cultural Environment

SI 1: Health and Well-being

RC 1: Swansea Central Area Regeneration

RC 10: Employment and enterprise development

ER 1: Climate Change

ER 2: Strategic Green Infrastructure Network

TR 1: Tourism, Recreation and Leisure Development

RP 1: Safeguarding Public Health and Natural Resources

2.1.4

Area Wide policies are generally of a generic nature (i.e. not place specific), and include topic-based policies setting out criteria against which planning applications will be considered. It is not the purpose of these policies to repeat topics covered in National Planning Policy and Guidance. Rather, Area Wide policies (shown on a light purple background) make clear the specific local application of planning principles and themes.

2.1.5

Site Specific policies are those that relate to particular proposals and/or allocations for development, change or protection. This includes policies relating to housing sites, Strategic Development Areas, retail locations and natural heritage designations. Site specific policies are also shown with a light purple background.

2.1.6

The Plan policies should be read in conjunction with the Proposals Map. The maps are laid out on an Ordnance Survey base and divided into logical geographical areas for ease of reference. The Proposals Map identifies the sites and development areas described in the relevant policies and proposals and also defines the Plan's settlement boundaries. The Proposal Map includes the following allocations:

2.1.7

Where designations are determined by other mechanisms or bodies, these are not shown on the Proposals Map and are instead featured on a Constraints and Issues Map available separately, which will enable changes that are not determined by the Plan to be readily made during the course of the Plan period

2.1.8

The Plan is consistent with, but does not seek to duplicate, National Planning Policy and Guidance. Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG), published separately, provide further detail and expand on certain policies and proposals.

LIST OF POLICIES

Placemaking and Sustainable Development     
                         Page
PS1 Sustainable Places 47
PS2
Placemaking and Place Management
48
PS3 Sustainable Housing Strategy 52
PS4 Sustainable Employment Strategy 58
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Strategic Development and Masterplanning
Page
SD 1 Strategic Development Areas 62
SD 2 Masterplanning Principles 65
SD A
South of Glanffrwd Road, 5
Pontarddulais
70
SD B North of Garden Village 75
SD C South of A4240, Penllergaer 79
SD D West of Llangyfelach Road, Penderry 84
SD E North of Clasemont Road, Morriston 89
SD F Cefn Coed Hospital, Cockett 93
SD G Northwest of M4 J46, Llangyfelach 97
SD H North of Waunarlwydd/Fforestfach 102
SD I Swansea Vale 107
SD J Swansea Central Area 111
SD K Fabian Way Corridor 118
SD L Tawe Riverside and Hafod Morfa Copperworks 123
 
Infrastructure Requirements and Obligations
Page
IO 1
Supporting Infrastructure

127

 

IO 2 Employment and Training Opportunities 130
 
Housing
Page
H 1 Non-Strategic Housing Sites 131
H 2 Affordable Housing Strategy 134
H 3 Affordable Housing 137
H 4 Off-site Affordable Housing 140
H 5 Local Needs Housing Exception Sites 142
H 5a 100% Affordable Housing Exception Sites 146
H 7 Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation 147
H 8 Ancillary Residential Accommodation 150
H 9 Houses in Multiple Occupation 152
H 10 Specialist Housing 158
H 11 Student Residential Accommodation 159
 
Historic and Cultural Environment
Page
HC 1 Historic and Cultural Environment 161
HC 2 Preservation or Enhancement of Buildings and Features 162
HC 3 Development in Welsh Language Sensitive Areas 167

Social Infrastructure

Page
SI1 Health and Well-being 170
SI2 Providing and Safeguarding Community Facilities and Locally Important Uses 171
SI3 Education Facilities 174
SI4 Morriston Hospital 176
SI5 Protection of Open Space 178
SI6 Provision of New Open Space 179
SI7 Cemeteries 182
SI8 Community Safety 182
 
Regeneration and Commercial Development
Page
RC 1 Swansea Central Area Regeneration 184
RC 2 Retail and Leisure Development 185
RC 3 Swansea Central Area Retail Centre 189
RC 4 Swansea Central Area Complementary Districts 192
RC 5 District Centres 194
RC 6 Local Centres  
RC 7 Out of Centre Retail Parks 195
RC 8 Commercial Development within Strategic Development Areas 196
RC 9 Ground Floor Non-Retail Uses within Centre 198
RC 10 Employment and Enterprise Development 199
RC 11 Alternative Uses at Employment Locations 200
RC 12 Office Development 202
RC 13 Swansea Enterprise Park 203
 
Ecosystem and Resilience
Page
 
ER 1 Climate Change 206
ER 2 Strategic Green Infrastructure Network 207
ER 3 Green Wedges 210
ER 5 Gower AONB 212
ER 6 Landscape Protection 214
ER 7 Designated Sites of Ecological Importance 216
ER 8 Undeveloped Coast 219
ER 9 Habitats and Species 221
ER10 Ecological Networks and Features of Importance for Biodiversity 223
ER11 Geological and Geomorphological Sites of Value 224
ER12 Trees, Hedgerows and Development 224
 
Countryside and Village Development
Page
CV 1 Key Villages 228
CV 2 Development in the Countryside 230
CV 3 Replacement Dwellings in the Countryside 234
CV 4 Conversion of Rural Buildings 235
CV 5 Farm Diversification 237
 
Tourism and Recreation
Page
TR 1 Tourism and Recreation Development 240
TR 2 Developed Coast and Waterfront 242
TR 3 Sustainable Tourism and Recreation Development in the Countryside 244
TR 4 Clyne Valley Country Park and Penllergaer Valley Woods 246
TR 5  Visitor Accommodation 247
TR 6 New Static Caravan, Touring Caravan and/or Camping Sites Within the AONB 249
TR 7 New Static Caravan, Touring Caravan and/or Camping Sites Outside the AONB 251
TR8  Existing Static Caravan, Touring Caravan and/or Camping Sites 253
TR 9 Extensions to, and Overflow Areas of, Existing Touring Caravan and/or Camping Sites 255
TR 10 Short-term ‘Festival’ Camping Events 256
TR 11 Caravan Rallies 257
TR 12 Storage of Caravans 258
TR 13 Residential Use of Holiday Accommodation 258
 
Transport, Movement and Connectivity
Page
T 1 Transport Measures and Infrastructure 260
T 2 Active Travel 262
T 3 Strategic Bus Based Rapid Transit 264
T 4 Transport Interchanges 265
T 5 Design Principles for Transport Measures and Infrastructure 266
T 6 Parking 268
T 7 Public Rights of Way and Recreational Routes 271
T 8 Canal Network 272
T 9 Port and Docks 273
 
Energy and Utilities
Page
EU 1 Local Search Areas 275
EU 2 Renewable and Low Carbon Energy in New Development 282
EU 3 District Heating and Cooling 283
EU 4 Public Utilities and New Development 284
EU 5 Telecommunications and Digital Technology 285
 
Resources and Public Health Protection
Page
RP 1 Safeguarding Public Health and Natural Resources 287
RP 2 Noise Pollution 288
RP 3 Air and Light Pollution 290
RP 4 Water Pollution and the Protection of Water Resources 291
RP 5 Avoidance of Flood Risk 295
RP 6 Land Contamination 297
RP 7 Land Instability 298
RP 8 Sustainable Waste Management 298
RP 9 Landfill Sites 301
RP 10 Sustainable Waste Management For New Development 302
RP 11 Agricultural Land Disposal of Inert Waste 303
RP 12 Sustainable Development of Mineral Resources 304
RP 13 Safeguarding Minerals 307
RP 14 Mineral Buffer Zones 308

 

2.2

PLACEMAKING AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

Policy PS 1: SUSTAINABLE PLACES –

In order to deliver sustainable places and strategically manage the spatial growth of the County, the delivery of new homes, jobs, infrastructure and community facilities must comply with the Plan’s sustainable settlement strategy, which requires:

i. Development to be directed to the most sustainable locations within the defined settlement boundaries of the urban area and Key Villages;

ii. New homes and jobs to be delivered in a manner consistent with growth forecasts and the Plan’s Sustainable Housing and Employment Strategies;

iii. The safeguarding and protection of the character and openness of the Green Belt and Green Wedges; and

iv. Inappropriate development in the countryside to be resisted.

2.2.1

The distribution of future sustainable growth across the County follows a simple settlement hierarchy consisting of the urban area, Key Villages and the countryside. As the most sustainable location for major development and reinforcing its position as the main centre for the Swansea Bay City Region.

2.2.2

Away from the urban area, small-scale growth is focussed on a number of defined key villages. A Rural Village Appraisal process identified key villages as the most sustainable settlements, within the rural area, to accommodate appropriate small scale housing, community facilities and sustainable rural enterprise development. 

2.2.3

The County’s countryside is extensive, within which are numerous hamlets, isolated dwellings, farms and rural enterprises that reflect the nature of the County’s rural economy. The countryside is a finite resource and is protected from inappropriate development. Generally only development requiring a countryside location is permitted and there is an emphasis on safeguarding the openness of the countryside and protecting, conserving and enhancing the County’s high quality natural and historic environment.

2.2.4

Strategic Policy PS 1 emphasises that the Plan’s settlement boundaries are a key mechanism for helping to manage future growth by defining the area within which development would normally be permitted, subject to material planning considerations. The settlement boundaries of the urban area and Key Villages are shown on the Proposals Map, and have been carefully assessed to follow logical physical features wherever possible. Outside the defined settlement limit, development is strictly controlled, and will generally only be supported in accordance with Plan policies, and/or if a countryside location is deemed essential given the nature of the proposal, in line with National Planning Policy and Guidance. The Policy aims to maximise the use of previously developed land and along with Policies PS 3 and PS 4 to bring forward residential and employment development in locations well linked to existing communities, infrastructure, facilities and public transport, which forms the essence of the Plan’s sustainable settlement strategy. 

2.2.5

Green Wedges are designated on those parts of the countryside that are considered to act as buffers between settlements and prevent settlement coalescence in areas that are under pressure for development. Within these areas safeguarding the openness of the land is essential to maintain distinct settlements and safeguard their separate identities. Whilst there are additional Plan policies which seek to control development in the countryside, it is important to give extra protection to vulnerable areas of countryside between settlements and protect their openness. The settlement boundaries, and Green Wedges will work in conjunction to strategically manage future built form and settlement edges. They will assist in safeguarding the countryside from encroachment, protect the setting for the urban area and help facilitate urban regeneration by encouraging the reuse of derelict and other urban land. 

Policy PS 2: PLACEMAKING AND PLACE MANAGEMENT –

Development should enhance the quality of places and spaces, and respond positively to aspects of local context and character that contribute towards a sense of place.

The design, layout and orientation of proposed buildings, and the spaces between them, should provide for an attractive, legible, healthy, accessible and safe environment. All proposals should ensure that no significant adverse impacts would be caused to people’s amenity. Depending on the nature, scale and siting of the proposal, development should also:

i. Have regard to important elements of local heritage, culture, landscape, townscape, views and vistas;

ii. Ensure neighbourhoods benefit from an appropriate diversity of land uses, community facilities and mix of densities that in combination are capable of sustaining vibrancy;

iii. Create or enhance opportunities for Active Travel and greater use of public transport;

iv. Integrate effectively with the County’s network of multi-functional open spaces and enhance the County’s green infrastructure network;

v. Enhance public realm quality, incorporating public art where appropriate;

vi. Provide for a hierarchy of interconnected streets and spaces;

vii. Ensure active frontages onto streets and spaces to provide natural surveillance and character;

viii. Provide an accessible environment for all;

ix. Provide appropriate parking and circulation areas for cars, cycles, motor bikes and service vehicles;

x. Deliver new, and/or enhance existing, connections to essential social infrastructure and community facilities;

xi. Maximise opportunities for sustainable construction, resource efficiency and contributions towards increased renewable or low carbon energy generation;

xii. Avoid the loss of land and/or premises that should be retained for its existing use or as an area of open space;

xiii. Avoid unacceptable juxtaposition and/or conflict between residential and nonresidential uses;

xiv. Ensure no significant adverse impact on natural heritage and built heritage assets;

xv. Ensure resilience is not undermined and does not result in significant risk to human health, well-being or quality of life; and 

xvi. Ensure that commercial proposals, including change of use proposals:

a. incorporate active frontages and shopfront designs that make a positive contribution to the streetscene,

b. provide appropriate enclosure,

c. relate well to the character of the host building,

d. do not compromise the ability to deliver priority regeneration schemes.

xvii. Have regard to the implications for infrastructure and services.

2.2.6

The importance of Placemaking is a cornerstone of the national planning agenda in Wales and the sustainable development objectives which underpin it. All new development can contribute in some form to the making of places, and influence how that place will be experienced and enjoyed (i.e. its ‘sense of place’), which will stand as a legacy for future generations of occupants and visitors. The above Policy therefore provides a yardstick against which proposals should measure its intended and likely effects. The Plan is committed to a holistic Placemaking and Place Management approach being applied in all areas and at a range of scales, in order to create a genuine sustainable legacy in accordance with the Well-being and Future Generations (WBFG) Act. The Policy is therefore applicable to all development across the County, and relates to development at a variety of different scales and types. 

2.2.7

An integral part of Placemaking and holistic planning is to create and manage places that seek to ensure social inclusion, equality of opportunity and access for all. This includes all aspects of development including the physical environment, land uses and transportation. The principle of access for all encompasses all elements of society and is applicable to all developments in all locations.

2.2.8

Ensuring proposals exhibit high quality, sustainable design credentials that respond to local context will be consistently pursued in the interests of elevating the County into a new era of prosperity, desirability and distinctiveness. Design encompasses matters of layout, scale, form, massing, height, density, colour, materials and specific detailing that will vary considerably between development proposals. Crucially, creating successful places, or achieving positive changes in existing places, requires a holistic approach that brings together a number of different disciplines. In this context “good design” is about much more than addressing the physical appearance of buildings and a focus on details alone will not create a successful place. The mixture of uses within a development, and the way in which buildings relate to one another and surrounding streets, are also key elements of creating safe and attractive places. In this sense the Policy embraces the wider principles of good design for delivering sustainable places, as advocated by the Design Commission for Wales21 . 

21 Good Design and the Local Development Plan Process, DCfW, 2014 

2.2.9

The Policy sets out the elements of sustainable Placemaking considered essential to the delivery of the Plan’s Vision of creating sustainable, distinct communities that are supported by good quality infrastructure, community facilities and opportunities for recreation. It thereby enables a response to inequities in terms of the distribution of, and accessibility to, a range of good quality social and community facilities and infrastructure. Addressing this issue is essential to creating vibrant community life and to addressing variations in social deprivation across the County. 

2.2.10

The Policy also recognises the role that the County’s unique historic and cultural heritage plays in defining a community’s sense of place, and highlights the importance of the Green Infrastructure network which, as well as being important for its amenity value, provides enhanced opportunities for Active Travel and promotes improved health and well-being. Ensuring connectivity for all forms of movement, but especially by Active Travel and sustainable modes, is key to achieving the creation of successful places22. To this end, the design and function of streets must be treated as an integral aspect of Placemaking and must not be considered in isolation. 

22  TAN18: Transport and Manual for Streets

2.2.11

Poor design not only detracts from the character and appearance of an area, but can harm neighbours’ quality of life. Potential impacts on people’s amenity will be assessed by considering elements such as visual impact, loss of light, overlooking, privacy, disturbance and likely traffic movements. Internal floor dimensions of living spaces are also considered an important element of maintaining appropriate amenity standards and providing for healthy and attractive environments. This applies to both new buildings and conversions. For example, the conversion of existing buildings for residential use must not result in an over-intensive use of that building, such as giving rise to cramped living conditions and/or rooms with insufficient windows.

2.2.12

Natural surveillance is an important design measure that can ensure safer places and reduce the need to implement additional physical security measures, in the interests of achieving more inclusive development. 

2.2.13

Ensuring resilience is not undermined will require development to consider opportunities for building adaptation and/or the use of measures such as delivering green spaces within development that will allow endangered species to migrate. 

2.2.14

The character of buildings are defined by elements such as materials, colours and other details, which must be assessed by means of a robust analysis of relevant context, and communicated through a Design and Access Statement (DAS) to be submitted in support of Planning Applications. In circumstances when a DAS is not required, justification for the design should still be provided in order to convey the rationale for design choices. There will be particular expectations of quality in areas of valued and distinctive character such as Conservation Areas and the Gower AONB. In addition, there will be areas where it is not desirable to reflect the existing character and where new development will provide an opportunity to raise the quality of the local built environment through good design. 

2.2.15

Good design precludes cramped and/or over intensive development, including inappropriate tandem development or ribbon development. In some instances infill or backland development will not be appropriate within settlements, for example where it is detrimental to the amenity of occupiers in surrounding properties and/or the character of an area, such as an area characterised by its openness and/or relatively large gaps between dwellings. Furthermore, in some instances, vacant urban land may be more appropriately retained as an area of openness, including for recreation, amenity or nature conservation purposes. Proposals for subdividing existing dwelling plots, developing on land behind dwellings and infilling gaps between properties will be assessed for their potential impact on the existing properties, their effect on the area, and the conditions that will be created for the new property.

2.2.16

The Policy is expanded upon by SPG , that address a range of development types and areas covered in relevant Plan policies. These include guidance relating to:

Policy PS 3: SUSTAINABLE HOUSING STRATEGY –

The Plan provides for the development of up to 17,645 homes to promote the creation and enhancement of sustainable communities and meet the housing requirement of 15,600 dwellings for the Plan period. The Sustainable Housing Strategy is based on:

i. Creating new neighbourhoods at Strategic Development Areas within, and on the edge of, established settlements; 

ii. Allocating Non-Strategic Housing Sites within, and on the edge of, established settlements;

iii. Supporting windfall residential development at appropriate sites within settlements, focussing on the re-use of previously developed land; and

iv. Allocating exception sites in Gower and Gower Fringe that will deliver high proportions of affordable housing and homes that provide for an identified local need.

In all areas outside defined settlement boundaries there will be a presumption against inappropriate housing development. 

2.2.17

Facilitating the delivery of an appropriate number and range of quality new homes that will meet the identified housing requirement for future generations is a fundamental aim of the Plan. The above Strategic Policy is founded on up to date evidence regarding the likely scale of future population growth and the corresponding housing requirement that arises. The housing requirement numbers for the County have been assessed using the WG Local Authority level Household Projections for Wales as the starting point for establishing the level of population growth to be addressed by the Plan, however the figures have also been supplemented by up to date research and data that is locally and egionally specific. In particular this research and data relates to future economic growth scenarios and the associated level of housing required. The identified housing requirement was set following an analysis of various growth options and having regard to the most up to date evidence available. The requirement is based on economic growth that is likely over the Plan period and that will support the regeneration and economic aspirations of the Council and City Region23. It includes a flexibility allowance to allow for where some sites may not come forward as planned or to respond to unforeseen needs as set out in Table 1 ‘Components of Housing Requirement and Supply’.

23 WG advice is set out in Policy Clarifiction letter 10 April 2014

2.2.18

The Plan’s Sustainable Housing Strategy has been formulated on the basis of sustainable development principles and in accordance with the goals and aspirations of the WBFG Act (2015). It is focussed on helping a wide range of people to meet their housing needs in a sustainable manner. It is specifically aimed at promoting cohesive communities that are attractive, safe, well connected, and offer a range of opportunities for accessing and improving the provision of cultural and leisure facilities, community services and commercial premises. By focussing on these elements, the Sustainable Housing Strategy aims to maintain the sense of pride and belonging that is already in existence amongst many Swansea communities, and to foster these positive responses amongst the residents of new and extended neighbourhoods. These key aims are also vital components of supporting the regeneration aspirations of the County and the City Region.  

2.2.19

The Strategy provides a wide range and choice of opportunities for the creation of new homes and will enable different sites in a range of locations to be progressed concurrently. Brownfield sites will contribute a significant element of the provision, particularly within the Central Area. The evidence demonstrates however that, following the success of past regeneration initiatives, there is now a finite supply of suitable brownfield opportunities. It is important to emphasise that not all brownfield sites are appropriate for development, having regard to other Plan policies and in some instances fundamental site constraints. Additionally, not all existing brownfield sites with planning permission will be developed due to changed economic/market conditions. The Plan therefore provides significant new greenfield opportunities for the delivery of new homes, plus supporting uses and infrastructure, which ensures the Plan is genuinely able to provide a broad range and choice of places to live for future generations. Greenfield sites can also improve the prospects of delivering much needed affordable and family housing, since viability can be a particular issue for brownfield sites that require high costs of remediation or that in any event generate lower sales values. The Plan needs to fulfil its key role in bringing forward sufficient land in appropriate locations to contribute towards meeting affordable housing needs and help meet the identified shortfall in affordable housing provision that exists across the County.

2.2.20

The provision of a full range and choice of housing options is vital to support the delivery of the economic strategy of the Council and City Region. High quality homes in attractive, appealing locations that are convenient to employment opportunities are important elements in attaining the aspired levels of economic growth. New homes and supporting community facilities can in turn help attract new investment to the County and stimulate more movement in the housing market. Associated construction jobs would also provide an additional benefit to the local economy. The Sustainable Housing Strategy therefore supports the wider objectives and proposals set out in the Plan. 

2.2.21

New greenfield releases also bring with them the ability to contribute towards the wider provision of strategic infrastructure to the benefit of the County and City Region. For example, the delivery of highway infrastructure and sustainable transportation measures offer potential to have a positive impact for existing communities, as well as for future residents and workers. In this respect, there are clear benefits of the focus on allocating SDA’s that offer the opportunity of a co-ordinated, ‘network-wide’ approach to deliver strategically important infrastructure.  

2.2.22

The presumption against any proposals outside defined settlement boundaries provides clarity as to the appropriate locations for future development and will ensure growth is strategically managed. The consideration of potentially appropriate housing beyond settlement boundaries will be made having regard to Plan Policy CV 2: Development in the Countryside and National Planning Policy and Guidance

2.2.23

Critical to the delivery of the Sustainable Housing Strategy over the Plan period is the masterplanning approach, which has been adopted to carefully manage the process of appropriate phasing across a range of sites. Individual SDA policies and the overarching Placemaking policies of the Plan provide a framework for delivery of the approach.

2.2.24

The sites identified for housing present the lowest risk in terms of their potential for delayed implementation or delivery issues. The masterplanning approach, which also addresses the provision of infrastructure, puts in place a framework to ensure the orderly development of sites. Strategic Policies on masterplanning, design and infrastructure, together with supporting documentation, explain this approach in more detail. 

2.2.25

The Plan incorporates a flexibility allowance of approximately 2,045 additional homes, over and above the 15,600 new homes requirement. This total provision within the plan of 17,645 therefore incorporates a total flexibility allowance of 13% in excess of the base level, evidenced requirement. The total provision within the plan includes allocations, commitments, and windfall sites. The windfall component is based on evidence relating to the number of such sites that are realistically likely to emerge during the Plan period and includes Council owned assets that are continually under review for future disposal to the market. This approach ensures that the Plan makes realistic and deliverable provision for a supply of new homes, incorporating sufficient flexibility to meet potential alternative economic and population growth scenarios. The approach ensures the Plan meets Government’s uppermost projection of household growth in Swansea24 . The overall provision in the Plan reflects the importance of achieving an uplift in the development of new homes, which will be partly dependent upon there being a good range and distribution in the supply of deliverable housing land across the authority. This is particularly important given the fundamental Placemaking strategy and role of SDAs in the Plan, which by virtue of their nature and scale can reasonably be expected to give rise to unforeseen issues that may delay completions of new homes at certain sites. The Plan therefore ensures that the supply of land provides sufficient flexibility to support the viable delivery of the housing requirement, by means of both an appropriate flexibility allowance and the spatial distribution and range of sites allocated. 

24  Based on the 2011 based 10 year average migration projection, the highest of the Welsh Government variant projections for Swansea

2.2.26

The Plan incorporates further flexibility in respect of potential additional capacity at certain sites. Each SDA has a housing unit number ascribed to it, which represents the figure considered deliverable during the Plan period. Certain allocated sites however have additional capacity that could be brought forward, subject to a number of criteria being met such as demonstration of demand being higher than expected and the delivery of appropriate infrastructure, as set out in the relevant SDA policy. In this way, if a need is identified in the Annual Monitoring Report before the end of the Plan period, additional land can be brought forward for residential purposes at that point in time through a Plan review. This approach of focussing potential additional areas at Strategic Sites is considered to have particular merit as these locations are best placed to take advantage of the comprehensive provision of new community and transportation infrastructure, and will also minimise impact on areas of higher environmental sensitivity including land proposed for Green Wedge. This approach aligns with the tests of soundness that demand that Plans are sufficiently flexible to be able to positively respond to changes in circumstances. It also ensures that the Plan is ready and able to call on suitable alternativesites if necessary that have been subject to SA/SEA analysis and are well positioned to meet such need, if monitoring indicates this is required.

2.2.27

The Sustainable Housing Strategy allows for discrete development within Gower and Gower Fringe locations to meet the evidenced need for affordable housing and homes to meet local need. Policy H 5 provides a clear framework to deliver new homes at these sensitive locations.

2.2.28

The Plan’s affordable housing strategy is set out in Policy H 2. The Plan makes provision to deliver a minimum of 3,310 affordable housing units over the plan period. The supporting text to Policy H 2 sets out the components of Affordable Housing supply.

2.2.29

A summary of the components of the Housing Requirement and Supply how the Plan will provide for the required 17,100 new homes over the Plan period, as well as the additional flexibility allowance, is shown in Table 1.

Table 1: Components of Housing Requirement and Supply

Component Number of units
Component

Housing built = 3,630

Extant planning permissions = 2,203

Allocations

H1 sites = 2,611

H5 sites = 210

SD sites = 7,109 

Windfall

Large sites = 858

Small sites = 1,024

Total Provision  17,645 
Requirement 15,600 
Flexibility 2,045 (13.1%) 
Total Provision 17,645

Notes:

Base date of the information is 1st April 2017

End date of the Plan 31st December 2025

2.2.30

A breakdown of the housing supply and requirement by SHPZ is shown in Table 2. 

2.2.31

The vast majority of the housing supply will be provided within the principal urban area (72%). Just over a quarter (26%) will be provided in the major physically detached settlements, with a small amount of development in the Key Villages (2%).

Table 2: Components of the Housing Requirement and Supply by SHPZ 

SHPZ Total Commitments Total Allocations Forecasted Windfall Total Provision % of Provision  Housing Requirement* % of Housing Requirement
Central

917

1,504

411

2,832

16%

2,100

12%

East

1,397

1,686 

96

3,179

18%

4,200

25%

GNW

1,478

3,405

96

4,979

28%

5,800

34%

North 

432

2,754

44

3,230

18%

2,900

17%

West

789

461

210

1,460

8%

1,500

9%

Small sites in above areas 

665

0

829

1,494

8%

N/A

N/A

Gower Fringe

66

95

194

355

2%

300

2%

Gower

89

25

-

114

1%

200

1%

Total

 5,833

9,930

1,882

17,645 

100%

17,100

100%

Note: Figures may not sum due to rounding

* Source: Local Housing Market Assessment (Update) 2015

Policy PS 4: SUSTAINABLE EMPLOYMENT STRATEGY –

Opportunities for business growth and the potential for the creation of 13,600 additional jobs over the Plan period result in a requirement for 19 hectares of employment land. This will be provided for by means of a Sustainable Employment Strategy, which is based on:

i. Allocating mixed use Strategic Development Areas that incorporate substantive areas for new, or retained, employment uses of varying scale at the following locations:

1. SD G: Land north of M4 Junction 46 (14 Ha ;

2. SD H: Land north of Waunarlwydd/Fforestfach (26 Ha);

3. SD I: Swansea Vale (4 Ha); 4. SD J: Central Area and City Waterfront (4 Ha);

5. SD K: Fabian Way Corridor (12 Ha),

ii. Retaining land for employment that is in active viable employment use that forms part of the employment land bank, including existing employment estates and business parks;

iii. Allowing small scale sustainable employment developments within Key Villages, plus appropriate rural enterprises within the countryside to help enhance and diversify the rural economy; and iii. Adopting a flexible approach where appropriate to deliver proposals that will create significant numbers of new high quality jobs within the highest skilled and/or knowledge economy employment sectors.  

2.2.32

In-line with National Planning Policy and Guidance25, the Plan considers employment land needs strategically and is founded on a comprehensive review of economic circumstances and investment targets. This Strategic Policy is founded on the Plan’s evidence base. The assessment reflects the City Region context, travel to work patterns, and economic/housing market overlaps. It provides a broad overview of the entire economy, not just uses defined under parts B1-8 of the Town and Country Planning Use Classes Order. 

25 PPW and TAN23

2.2.33

Employment forecasts have been undertaken for the County to underpin the Plan’s job target. Growth forecasts have been produced reflect the potential impact of key major interventions, including projects that form part of the Swansea Bay City Deal proposals. 

2.2.34

The preferred growth forecast suggests that an additional 13,600 jobs will be created in the County over the Plan period primarily driven by proposed future growth in key sectors including:

• Professional Services

• Health (Residential Care & Social Work)

• Tourism in the form of Accommodation & Food Services and Recreation 

2.2.35

A further level of detailed economic modelling has informed the City Region Economic Regeneration Strategy (ERS)26. This modelling has identified that knowledge orientated activities in both service and more traditional manufacturing areas have particular potential for employment growth, including in architectural and engineering services, legal and accounting, IT, business services, construction and real estate. 

26  Swansea Bay City Region Economic Regeneration Strategy, 2013- 2030 

2.2.36

The Plan aims to ensure that sufficient land is available to support economic growth i.e. a sufficient employment landbank. The evidence base underpinning the LDP employment growth strategy identifies the amount of business space that would be required to support the preferred employment growth forecast. Overall, based on 13,600 net new jobs over the Plan period, there is a requirement across the County for 19 ha of employment land (Use Class B1-B8 space) plus ‘Areas of Search’ for a waste facility. It should be noted that this level of growth should not be viewed as a ceiling or maximum level. The Plan evidence base has determined that a higher level of growth could occur if other investment beyond that which it has been possible to quantify comes forward. The Plan reflects this by providing an appropriate level of flexibility and ‘over provision’ in the amount of land identified with the potential for employment use which the Council considers is justified having regard to:

• The clear differentiation between the nature of the sites and their relative locations, reflecting the need to provide different options for a range of sectors and investors and to be flexible to changes in market demand with particular regard to the current uncertainty about future national and international economic growth projections.

• The need to ensure developments come forward in a sustainable manner, incorporating a range of uses at the SDAs, in particular to ensure employment uses are delivered alongside residential development.

• The need to ensure economic growth is not constrained and to recognise that the scale of  growth envisaged could be realised more quickly than forecast and/or exceeded. The minimum 19 ha of employment land required over the Plan period comprises as follows:

Table 2: B-space land requirements 2010-25 for the County 

Sector

B-space land

requirements  2010-25

Industrial +8 Ha
Warehousing +8 Ha
Offices +3 Ha
Total +19 Ha

Source: 2017 Review of Swansea Local Development Plan Growth Strategy and Evidence Base – rounded figures

2.2.37

There is a lack of available, high quality office accommodation but an oversupply of sub-standard offices. The evidence has identified a need for investment in higher quality commercial premises 56The principle of accommodating the majority of this need within the Swansea Central Area is appropriate in the context of forecast growth sectors, market intelligence and the location of planned investment. The evidence indicates that the land requirements equate to only around 3 ha of land because of the higher densities of floorspace to land possible in the Central Area. 

56 2017 Review of Swansea Local Development Plan Growth Strategy and Evidence Base

2.2.38

Whilst there is an adequate supply of low quality industrial space in the County the evidence shows there is an identified demand for new industrial premises and land to meet modern standards and investor requirements, up to an area of 8 ha. There is also demand for additional warehousing space (+8 ha)

2.2.39

It should also be noted that proposals for waste management facilities can be accommodated on industrial land. The Study identified a requirement of around 35 ha for waste management facilities sourced from the historic Regional Waste Plan (RWP) 1st Review. Whilst this figure is no longer valid and no official figure now exists for the amount of land required, the Plan must ensure capacity exists on industrial land to accommodate future provision of necessary waste management facilities by identifying ‘Preferred Areas’ or ‘Areas of Search’. This is addressed within the Plan through policies relating to future waste management. 

2.2.40

Approximately 45%27 of all forecasted employment growth will need to be accommodated within this identified requirement for B-use land, and it is therefore important to plan for this through strategic allocations. To ensure sufficient sites are available with appropriate infrastructure and servicing, land is allocated at the Mixed Use SDAs for appropriate employment generating uses. Policy PS 4 confirms the scale of potential development areas that could accommodate a range of B Class employment uses, which is reflective of the concept plans and policy requirements for each site. The evidence base highlights that the employment areas within the Mixed Use SDAs are located at established business destinations and/or close to the M4, as favoured by occupiers, and each presents a slightly different offer in terms of the occupiers they are likely to attract. For example the retention of employment land at SD H provides for appropriate industrial operations, and the strategic business park at SD G provides an opportunity to attract strategic regional investment for higher end or emerging industries/occupiers. Collectively, therefore, it is considered that these sites can effectively contribute towards meeting the identified need for industrial land, with the size and characteristics of the sites capable of facilitating delivery of the wide range of sizes of premises/floorplates required by the market, providing for a level of flexibility and choice. The sites identified in the policy provide for a broad range of B-class uses, the nature of which are further defined in site specific policy SD G-K. Proposals for B1 office uses of greater than 200 sq m gross floor area will only be permitted within SDAs outside the Swansea Central Area if appropriate evidence is submitted to demonstrate that there is no site or premises available within the Central Area to accommodate the proposed development. The evidence underpinning the Plan demonstrates that the allocated SDA sites can effectively contribute towards meeting the identified requirement for industrial, warehousing and office premises and land, with the size and characteristics of the sites likely to facilitate delivery of the range of sizes of premises/floorplates as required by the market over the Plan period . Other non B-space job growth will be planned through retail planning, new education facilities and a number of sui-generis uses. Some jobs will also be accommodated through homeworking.

27 Source: Economic Growth and Employment Land Assessment (May 2014)

2.2.41

National Planning Policy and Guidance recognises that local employment opportunities within rural settlements are important to sustain and improve communities. In line with this, Key Villages designated in the Plan allow for appropriate small scale sustainable enterprises within the settlement boundary, such as restaurants, craft businesses and knowledge intensive business services. Outside KeyVillages within the open countryside, the Plan supports the diversification of the rural economy away from a focus on agriculture. This is particularly relevant to the County’s rural areas where the Plan supports rural enterprise development. Rural enterprises are land related businesses and include traditional operations relating to agriculture and forestry, as well as other rural businesses that obtain their primary inputs from the site. Examples of these include the processing of agricultural products, land management activities and tourism enterprises.

2.3

STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT AND MASTERPLANNING

Policy SD 1: STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT AREAS –

Strategic Development Areas (SDAs) are allocated at 12 locations to provide new homes and opportunities for job creation and commercial investment at a strategic scale.

Residential led SDA’s are capable of accommodating a minimum of 400 homes, in accordance with the schedule of estimated units set out in this policy, and other complementary and supporting uses depending on the nature and scale of the site.

Mixed use SDA’s will provide new homes as part of wider mixed-use proposals to also deliver significant investment and economic benefit arising from commercial, community and/or cultural regeneration projects.

SDA’s boundaries are defined on the Proposals Map and include areas that will not be suitable for development due to technical constraints, environmental sensitivities and/or site specific requirements, including public open space and infrastructure.

The SDA’s are capable of delivering a greater number of homes beyond the Plan period, as highlighted in the following schedule, the details of which are set out in the relevant site specific SDA policy:

Proposals Map Site Reference Strategic Housing Policy Zone Site Name Estimated Units during Plan Period Estimated Residual Capacity after Plan period ends

Residential led SDAs

A Greater.N.West South of Glanffrwd Road, Pontarddulais 486 234
B Greater.N.West North of Garden Village 700 50
C Greater.N.West South of A4240, Penllergaer 644 206
D North West of Llangyfelach Road, Penderry 1,088 862
E North North of Clasemont Road, Morriston  490 110
F West Cefn Coed Hospital, Cocket 371 56
Total no of homes for residential led SDAs 3,779 1 ,518 

Mixed Use SDAs

G Greater.N.West  Northwest of M4 J46, Llangyfelach 565 235
H North North of Waunarlwydd/Fforestfach 716 603
I East Swansea Vale 410 40
J Central Central Area and City Waterfront 856 50
K East Fabian Way Corridor 525 0
L Central Tawe Riverside Corridor and Hafod Morfa Copper Works 258 112
Total number of homes for Mixed Use SDAs 3,330 1 ,040 
Total number of homes across all SDAs 7,109 2 ,558

* All sites are considered potentially capable of delivering homes beyond the Plan period

2.3.1

The nature and scale of development for each SDA is set out in individual site specific policies (Policies SD1 A-L), which define the Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements at each location. These include details of the necessary range of uses, infrastructure, open spaces and any distinctive attributes at each site. Appendix 3 of the Plan provides further detail of key infrastructure requirements identified for each allocated site, together with site informatives to highlight where further assessments will be required to establish the impact of development in relation to identified issues, constraints and designations. Where impacts of development have already been established the Appendix sets out the required mitigation measures or measures to retain/enhance identified natural or built heritage assets. The Plan is supported by an Infrastructure Delivery Plan which provides further detail of the phasing, funding and delivery of infrastructure required for each allocated site.

2.3.2

The financial viability of each SDA to deliver the full development requirements set out in each site specific SDA Policy will be subject to ongoing independent financial viability assessments. The Council will require the costs of acquiring the assessment to be met by the developer.

2.3.3

It is anticipated that SDAs will contribute around 70% of the allocations for residential development across the County over the Plan period. The anticipated number of dwellings capable of being delivered during this period are summarised in the schedule. The number of homes specified for the Plan period in each residential led SDA equates to what can reasonably be anticipated to be delivered up to 2025, and having regard to current site specific evidence regarding development trajectories and the particular characteristics and constraints of the site. The precise number of homes that come forward on each SDA will ultimately be dependent on further evidence that is provided at planning application stage, including detailed masterplanning and further site specific assessments of technical issues such as any environmental constraints.

2.3.4

A number of mixed-use SDA’s incorporate employment or commercial areas of regional/strategic importance, as well as significant residential development. The evidence base confirms that the forecast need for future employment floorspace can be accommodated on the SDA sites, and there is adequate flexibility built in for variations to the concept plans illustrated to ensure the sites come forward with a sustainable mix of uses and meet economic growth aspirations. In combination these will accommodate the majority of forecasted employment growth for the County, thereby allowing for flexibility, competition and choice.  

2.3.5

The Proposals Map defines the full extent of the SDA masterplan areas. In some cases sites are capable of delivering more homes than the numbers shown in the schedule, as highlighted in the Policy. It is expected that in most instances these sites will not be fully built out until beyond the end of the Plan period (i.e. after 2025). For the avoidance of doubt, the capacity for additional homes at these identified SDAs do not contribute to the housing growth figures for the Plan period, since evidence suggests that build rates are unlikely to exceed the numbers specified in the policy. 

2.3.6

The SDA allocations include land that will need to be safeguarded from development. The Policy highlights the examples of protected areas of open space or new infrastructure such as roads or drainage facilities.

Policy SD 2: MASTERPLANNING PRINCIPLES –

On all sites where there is capacity for 100 homes or more, development must deliver a comprehensively planned, sustainable neighbourhood with distinct sense of place that:

i. Is founded on a comprehensive and coherent Placemaking approach that relates to a masterplan for the entire site that demonstrates:

1. a clearly structured walkable neighbourhood with hierarchy of streets and spaces;

2. the provision of internal streets designed for low speeds, having regard to key pedestrian routes;

3. attractive and resilient new buildings that reflect positive aspects of local context;

4. connections to essential social infrastructure and community facilities, including access to District and Local Centres where appropriate; and

5. a phasing schedule to demonstrate the timely delivery of development and supporting infrastructure ;

ii. Achieves net residential density across the site of at least 35 homes per hectare, with higher density residential and mixed uses located along public transport corridors and in focal areas, lower densities on rural/sensitive edges, and a range of densities elsewhere to meet different needs and create distinct character areas;

iii. Has sympathetic regard to, and successfully integrates, existing site features, topography,  landscape, seascape and views to and from the site;

iv. Integrates key movement corridors, in particular to encourage active travel and use of public transport, including links to the wider area;

v. Creates a network of well overlooked and legible streets and spaces that address townscape and community safety considerations and are not dominated by vehicles;

vi. Provides for multi-functional and connected green infrastructure that links to the wider area and provide opportunities for relaxation, play and recreation alongside ecological provision in accordance with the Fields in Trust requirements;

vii. Conserves and enhances biodiversity and natural heritage assets, with suitable buffers where required;

viii. Retains and integrates existing important trees and hedgerows, including local native species, to improve local biodiversity and maintain the existing landscape character;

ix. Integrates watercourses, ponds and other water management measures as appropriate within the public realm and landscape, including opportunities for sustainable drainage; and x. Maximises sustainable development opportunities where possible in accordance with the Welsh Government Planning for Sustainable Buildings Guidance.

xi. Have regard to the implications for infrastructure and services.

Proposals at Strategic Development Areas must accord with the above criteria and will also be required to:

a. Incorporate spine streets lined by active frontages with shared footways/cycleways on both sides of the street, with verges and appropriate street trees;

b. Deliver a network of streets to serve discreet development areas;

c. Create an accessible site which integrates positively with existing communities and sustainable travel routes, public transport facilities, footway and cycle routes;

d. Extend bus networks and increase the frequency and reliability of services to serve the site with public transport options, with a combination of strategic and local bus services;

e. Provide, and/or contribute towards, an appropriate range of social infrastructure and community facilities in central locations, which respond to any local deficiencies in existing provision, and are accessible by all travel modes;

f. Provide Affordable Housing in accordance with the requirements of Policy H3, taking into account any specific financial viability issues arising on the site relating to the provision of strategic infrastructure;

g. Provide new and varied recreation and leisure facilities at appropriate focal points within the new neighbourhood;

h. Provide across the site NEAPs, LEAPs and LAPs in accordance with Fields in Trust guidelines, all of which must incorporate appropriate equipment as well as incidental space;

i. Provide play opportunities for children of a range of ages, including opportunities for MUGA and other facilities to allow formal and informal play;

j. Provide open space in accordance with the NRW standards for Accessible Natural Greenspace;

k. Provide either a commuted sum for the ongoing maintenance of open spaces and recreation facilities by the Council, or demonstrate that arrangements are in place for a management company or for the site to be managed by an appropriate community organisation;

l. Demonstrate how habitat and species protection and management will be undertaken throughout the site, and if sites are to be gifted to the council provide commuted sums for this purpose;

m.Retain trees and hedgerows wherever possible, and a long term commitment to appropriate management and enhancement, and where hedgerows will be lost implement compensatory measures elsewhere within the site;

n. Provide ecological management plans, detailing how species and habitats on site are to be managed and maintained, to the satisfaction of the Council’s ecologist and arboriculturist, including providing sustainable wildlife links across and within the development and suitable protection for protected species;

o. Provide for compensatory surface water removal where required to offset the connection of additional foul flow to the combined sewerage network in accordance with the requirements of Policy RP 3 Water Pollution and the Protection of Water Resources.

p. Integrate opportunities where appropriate to minimise carbon emissions associated with the heating, cooling and power systems for new development; and

q. Provide a comprehensive and integrated drainage strategy demonstrating how foul, surface water, highway and land drainage shall be dealt with in a sustainable manner.

The Strategic Placemaking approach must be communicated by means of a Design and Access Statement. Where an outline planning application is submitted this must set a comprehensive and robust placemaking framework for the Reserved Matters applications through parameters plans and development principles. In light of the scale of the SDA sites it may be necessary to build in ‘time for design’ after the outline planning application and prior to the submission of reserved matters applications through conditions requiring approval of Design Codes and Sub Area Masterplans, to ensure a sufficiently robust planning mechanism to deliver a holistic Placemaking approach throughout the Plan period. 

2.3.7

The principles set out in the first part of the Policy (criteria i-x) will apply to proposals for all sites with capacity for 100 or more homes, including SDAs. The second part (criteria a-n to q) apply to proposals for SDAs only, and will be applied as overarching principles for all such sites in addition to site specific principles set out in each individual SDA policy.

2.3.8

The Plan presents an unprecedented opportunity for the Council to deliver new places and neighbourhoods across the County on a scale capable of creating exemplars of sustainable living consistent with the Welsh Government’s vision of healthy, cohesive communities set out in the WBFG Act. To achieve this, the Policy sets out a masterplanning requirement as part of an holistic Placemaking approach for all allocated and windfall sites of 100 or more homes. In combination, such sites have the potential to provide housing for some 20,000 people. The scale and geographical distribution of such sites offers significant opportunities to address local deficiencies through the provision of new, or enhancement of existing, infrastructure for the benefit of both existing and future residents. The Policy approach will help provide greater certainty for developers, the public and all interested parties. Sites of this size and upward will generate opportunities for a network of connected streets, areas of distinct character and a sequence of open spaces and green infrastructure. These Placemaking aspects need to be coherently planned and integrated to make the most of the opportunities. 

2.3.9

Sustainable Placemaking is based on the concept of ‘walkable neighbourhoods’ with a mixture of uses at the centre. This is best achieved with a connected pattern of streets and spaces, where daily needs are within walking distance. This encourages a reduction in the need to travel by car and to helps form coherent and healthy communities, in line with well-being aspirations. 

2.3.10

The integrated Placemaking approach will need to be communicated through a comprehensive masterplan document and Design and Access statement to cover issues including (but not limited to):

• Site and context analysis, following the ‘Site and Context Analysis Guide’ published by the Welsh Government (2016); 

• Movement strategy that includes walking, cycling and public transport;

• Land uses;

• Street hierarchy (including typical street sections);

• Green infrastructure/ open space/ play plan;

• Built form/ townscape;

• Character areas;

• Studies to test the layouts in key areas and along key routes; and

• Energy strategy following the practice guidance for sustainable buildings published by the Welsh Government in July 2014.  

2.3.11

Outline planning applications for 100+ homes and the SDA sites will create new neighbourhoods and will be built out on a phased basis, potentially by different interests. Therefore a robust placemaking framework is required to ensure that comprehensively planned, sustainable neighbourhoods with a distinct sense of place are delivered through the Outline Planning Application process. A controlling strategic masterplan framework and Design Code with associated Parameter Plans for the entire site will need to be agreed at the outline planning application stage, to which all future reserved matters applications would be required to accord with. Additionally, with regard to the larger SDA sites, the Council may require Sub Area Masterplans and/or Design Codes to be submitted prior to the submission of Reserved Matters Planning Applications, which will guide the detail to be agreed within discrete development areas. This will ensure a sufficiently robust planning mechanism is in place to ensure effective delivery of a holistic Placemaking approach over the Plan period. 

2.3.12

The Placemaking approach should also demonstrate compliance with the Council’s ‘Places to Live Residential Design Guide’ and other relevant SPG and relevant place based audits and toolkits28 . The application of criterion x will vary from site to site and this should be evidenced in the Design and Access Statement to explain what sustainable development opportunities can be achieved. Conversely the Design and Access Statement should also explain what cannot be achieved. 

28  http://www.designcouncil.org.uk/resources/guide/building-life-12- third-edition

Policy SD A: SOUTH OF GLANFFRWD ROAD, PONTARDDULAIS –

Site A is allocated for a comprehensive, residential led, development of circa 486 homes during the Plan period, incorporating a primary school, leisure and recreation facilities, public open space and appropriate community facilities, employment and commercial uses. Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner and be formally tied into planning consents.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES

• Create a well-connected sustainable extension to Pontarddulais, comprising a number of character areas that integrate positively with the existing District Centre, existing housing clusters, community facilities, Active Travel networks and public transport facilities.

• Create a multi-functional green infrastructure network within the site that facilitates Active Travel, taking account of the need to create healthy communities, with particular emphasis on: creating a linear park along the route of the high pressure water main; retaining existing trees and hedgerows within the public realm; retaining the site’s high point with skyline trees;

incorporating appropriate landscaping; protecting biodiversity; habitat creation and supporting a range of opportunities for formal and informal play and community led food growing.

• Face buildings on to open spaces and streets (including Woodville Street) to enhance cohesiveness and ensure community safety and a strong sense of place.

• Retain and integrate existing farm buildings and farm lanes.

• Provide a mix of higher densities at key points in the layout and lower densities on the rural/sensitive edges.

• Locate new pitches as an accessible focal point within the new neighbourhood.

DEVELOPMENT REQUIREMENTS

• Deliver a minimum 2 form entry Primary School during early phases of the scheme, located to the south of the development area on land north of Pontarddulais Comprehensive School, which must be accessible to new and existing residents by all travel modes. The school must incorporate changing facilities that are available for use by the community in association with the school playing fields.

• Deliver internal spine street and associated junctions, to run broadly North East to South West through the development from Glanffrwd Road to Tyn y Bonau Road and Station Road.

• Contribute towards improvements to Pontarddulais Railway Station.

• Off-site highway improvements having regard to the requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment and as identified in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule.

• On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages in accordance with Active Travel design including the linkages identified in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule references AT1, AT2 and AT3, to the school and Railway Station to the West of the District Centre, and along the East-West Green corridor and linear park.

• Incorporate existing PROW within the development by appropriate diversion and enhancement to form legible and safe routes for school and community access, including:

− Diversion of PROW ref L/98/1 out of school grounds

− Footpath through Tyn y Bon au Farm to follow line of new spine street or be diverted to an agreed alignment.

• Provide surface water flood control measures in the form of earth bund channelling (to a design to be approved by DCWW) to mitigate the effects of potential breach and resultant potential overland flows.

• Provide replacement industrial units (Class B2 B8 uses) to the west of Tyn y Bonau to facilitate the construction of the new access spine street through the site.

• Implement a range of potential environmental enhancements at the existing Pontarddulais Industrial Estate.

• Locate less vulnerable uses on Clayton Works site to complement the District Centre.

Provide for vehicular and active travel routes to the proposed school from high and medium density residential areas.

• Take measures to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language as outlined within a Welsh Language Action Plan submitted with the planning application.

• Retain as open space a development exclusion zone 25m either side of the High Pressure Water Main. 

  • Provision of affordable housing at the on-site target rate of 20% subject to consideration of financial viability.

Click here to view Site SD A

2.3.13

The site includes some 26 hectares of land located to the north of Pontarddulais District Centre. It incorporates brownfield land occupied by a former steel works north of High Street, and elevated green field land of open fields bounded by hedgerows around Tyn Y Bonau Farm between the existing residential streets of Tyn y Bonau Road and Glynhir Road. The greenfield element of the site is also enclosed to the north by Glanffrwd Road and to the south by Pontarddulais Comprehensive school and the town’s cricket field. This strategic site will deliver up to 720 dwellings, however, only 486 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period.  

2.3.14

The area North of the A48 includes a number of exsisting employment uses, including bespoke industrial units of Tyn Y Bonau road, whilst the Lye Industrial Estate lies further North of the settlement beyone Glanffrwd Road.

2.3.15

The site is well enclosed by existing development and provides an opportunity to create a new neighbourhood with its own distinct identity which is well integrated and connected with the existing settlement and District Centre, the railway station and the wider strategic highway network. 

2.3.16

The existing historic farm buildings and field hedge boundaries are important site features and the retention of these within the public realm is an opportunity to give the place a distinct sense of place that is rooted in the context.

2.3.17

The development of a new primary school will provide a potential community facility in a central location for use by the existing and new community. Its delivery must be phased in accordance with a program to be agreed with the Council, to ensure its completion before beneficial occupation of the total number of proposed dwellings.

2.3.18

A development exclusion zone will apply to a 25 metre wide area either side of the high pressure water main that traverses the Northern section of the site in a northwest to southeast direction. Whilst the sub-surface water main is a constraint, this presents the opportunity for the creation of a linear park following the route of the water main (shown at 2 on the Concept Plan). This open space along with the prominent elevated section of the greenfield site will be key landscape features. These areas should be enhanced with native planting, and provision of opportunities for formal and informal recreation and improved access across the site and integration between the site and the existing residential community. No residential development will be permitted in any part of the site affected by Zone C2 flood risk. Such areas will be expected to form part of the green infrastructure network to be integrated into proposals.

2.3.19

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

2.3.20

A Welsh Language Action Plan (WLAP) sets out then measures to be taken to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language. Planning permission will be subject to conditions or legal agreement requiring the implementation of the recommendations of the WLAP. Policy HC 3 provides further guidance in relation to the contents of a WLAP.

2.3.21

Due to highway infrastructure constraints north of the town centre, a new spine street will form an integral part of the development. The alignment of the street will facilitate the re-direction of HGV movements away from the existing residential streets of Glynhir Road and the network surrounding the comprehensive school. The spine street alignment from Glanffrwd Road, across the greenfield land to Tyn y Bonau Road will provide a westerly dedicated transport route for the existing urban traffic (and the additional traffic generated by the development) which will significantly improve the environmental quality of large residential areas of Pontarddulais. Upon exiting the greenfield land on Tyn y Bonau Road, the new link road can connect with the brownfield opportunities to the south, before continuing its alignment southwards towards the town centre junction with Water Street. 

2.3.22

A range of other enhancements to highway infrastructure to mitigate the impacts of the development, including potential improvements within and around Pontarddulais District Centre, are set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule (see Appendix 5). The wider transport measures include improvements to the access and facilities at Pontarddulais rail station.

Amended Concept Plan

Policy SD B: NORTH OF GARDEN VILLAGE –

Site B is allocated for a comprehensive, residential led, development of circa 700 homes during the Plan period, incorporating a Primary School, leisure and recreation facilities, public open space and flexible units for local facilities and commercial uses.

Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner and be formally tied into planning consent.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES

  • Create a well-connected sustainable extension to Gorseinon and Garden Village, comprising a number of character areas that integrate positively with the existing District Centre, existing housing clusters, community facilities, Active Travel networks and public transport facilities.
  • Create amulti-functional Green Infrastructure network throughout the site, taking account of the need to create healthy communities, with a particular emphasis on integrating landscape features, protecting biodiversity, habitat creation and native provenance tree planting, and supporting a range of opportunities for formal and informal play and community led food growing.
  • Provide a mix of higher densities at key points in the layout and lower densities on the rural/sensitive edges.
  • Design public spaces to be part of the ‘Green Infrastructure’ of the site in order to be multi-functional,  situated at accessible locations, and catering for all elements of the community.
  • Deliver a focal public realm area that corresponds with the school frontage.
  • Provide local facilities, with residential use above, adjacent to the Primary School.

DEVELOPMENT REQUIREMENTS

  • Deliver 2.5 form entry Primary School with playing pitches located in an accessible location to the north of Garden Village during the early phases of the scheme to serve new and existing residents by all travel modes. School to provide adequate drop off area and incorporate changing facilities that must be available for use by the community in association with the school playing field
  • Deliver internal spine street and associated junctions to run broadly north west to south east through the development area and with an access directly from Hospital Road north east of the development area.
  • Off-site highway improvements having regard to the requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment and in accordance with the Transport Measures Priority Schedule.
  • On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages both to and within the new development area, in accordance with Active Travel design including the linkages identified on the Transport Measures Priority Schedule, including
  • AT7-Kingsbridge/Stafford Common Cycle Link, AT09-to Railway Terrace and 
  • Gorseinon District centre, AT10 and 11 to Swansea Road and Hospital Road.
  • Incorporate existing PROW within the development by appropriate diversion and enhancement to form legible and safe routes for school and community access.
  • Where appropriate, retain and provide suitable buffers to habitats, particularly hedgerows, trees (including Ancient and/or Semi-Ancient Woodland), and SINCs.      
  • Submit and agree ecological management plans including proposals for mitigation, enhancement and maintenance for retained habitats and protected species (including for bats and dormouse) and provide appropriate compensatory and replacement habitat.
  • Provide suitable replacement land for Mynydd Garngoch Common, CL44, ensuring the replacement land has full public access to ensure public rights for air and exercise, including access on foot and horseback. 
  • On and off-site measures including any appropriate upgrades to the clean water supply or public sewerage networks.
  • Take measures to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh language as outlined within a Welsh Language Action Plan submitted with the planning application.

Provision of affordable housing at the on-site target rate of 20% subject to consideration of financial viability.

Click to view Site SD B

2.3.23

The site consists of approximately 50 hectares of greenfield land located north of Garden Village and south east of Gorseinon District Centre. The site is bounded by Gorseinon Road (A4240) to the north and Hospital Road and tracts of common land to the east. This strategic site will deliver up to a maximum of 750 dwellings, however only 700 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period.

2.3.24

The main vehicular access to the site will be off Hospital Road to the north east of the site, with other connections to the south off Swansea Road.

2.3.25

The development should seek to strengthen connections with established communities both to the north and south by sensitively integrating the development with the existing urban form. In order to maximise the site’s location in relation to Gorseinon District Centre new cycle and pedestrian routes must be provided both to and within the site to enable sustainable travel to the District Centre and connections to the existing PROW network.

Amended Concept Plan 

2.3.26

In order to enhance the sense of place and stimulate activity through the day at the nodal point near to the school, commercial floor space within the ground floor level of the potential apartment blocks should be provided. These should be ‘flexible unit(s)’ (incorporating the corner plots) for uses such as a local shop, café, live-work units and/or health facilities.

2.3.27

The development of a new primary school will provide a potential community facility in a central location for use by the existing and new community. Its delivery must be phased in accordance with a program to be agreed with the Council to ensure its completion before beneficial occupation of the total number of proposed dwellings.

2.3.28

The existing field hedge boundaries are important site features and the retention of these within the public realm areas is an opportunity to give the place a distinct sense of place that is rooted in the context.

2.3.29

The provision of a significant buffer to the immediate north of the existing Garden Village is a key component of the proposals which will protect and enhance its setting and act as a prominent central space for a community parkland around which the development will be defined and focused.

2.3.30

The site contains a number of environmentally sensitive habitats and protected species, Areas of Ancient /Semi-ancient woodland, marshy grassland and semi-improved grasslands, where appropriate these must be retained and Habitat and species protection and management plans are required for these areas. 

2.3.31

Further details of on and off-site highway measures are set out in Transport Measures Priorities Schedule. (See Appendix 5).

2.3.32

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3. 

2.3.33

A Welsh Language Action Plan (WLAP) sets out the measures to be taken to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language. Planning permission will be subject to conditions or legal agreement requiring the implementation of the recommendations of the WLAP. Policy HC 3 provides further guidance in relation to the contents of a WLAP.

Policy SD C: SOUTH OF A4240 PARC MAWR PENLLERGAER –

Site C is allocated for a comprehensive, residential led, mixed use development of circa 644 homes during the Plan period, incorporating primary school, leisure and recreation facilities, public realm, public open space and appropriate community and commercial uses.

Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner and be formally tied into planning consents.

PLACEMAKING PRICIPLES

  • Create a sustainable residential neighbourhood within Penllergaer, comprising a number of character areas that integrate positively with the existing community, existing housing clusters, community facilities, Active Travel networks and public transport facilities.
  • Create a multi-functional Green Infrastructure network throughout the site, taking account of the need to create healthy communities, with a particular emphasis on integrating landscape features, protecting biodiversity, habitat creation and native provenance tree planting, and supporting a range of opportunities for formal and informal play, and community led food growing,
  • Deliver a new local ‘hub’ to Penllergaer by means of a concentration of appropriate mixed uses with active frontages around a focal area in the northern part of the site where it is easily accessible to new and existing residents.
  • Retain and enhance the farm lane as an Active Travel route through the site.
  • Retain the farm complex and reuse for community benefit.
  • Provide a mix of higher densities at key points in the layout and lower densities on the rural/sensitive edges.

DEVELOPMENT REQUIREMENTS:

  • Deliver 3 form entry Primary School incorporating community facilities to be sited in a central location to serve new and existing communities and provide safe active travel to school. The school must provide an adequate drop off area and incorporate changing facilities on the basis that these could be available for use by the community in association with the school playing fields.
  • Deliver internal spine street and associated junctions to run broadly north to south through the site from the A4240 Gorseinon Road to connect to both the A483 and A484.
  • Appropriate off-site infrastructure improvement at existing A48/Pontarddulais Road/Gorseinon Road roundabout, which must be delivered in association with proposed new gateway access at A4240 Gorseinon Road. 
  • Off-site highway infrastructure improvements as necessary, having regard to requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment and as set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule.
  • On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages, both to and within the new development area, including linkages identified in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule:
    • AT13  - Phoenix Way employment areas to the West of the development area and east to west green corridor link.
    • AT14  - Link to South via underpass to SDA H.
  • Incorporate existing PROW within the development by appropriate diversion and enhancement to form legible and safe routes.  Specifically as follows:
    • retain and surface existing green lane to provide foot/cycle connection to PROW to the West.
    • provide bridle access and bridle gates to PROW ref LC/28/2.
  • New community facility utilising the existing farmhouse building, to provide space ‘for hire’ by groups and individuals and to be developed in association with opportunities for allotments and food growing
  • New local centre in the North of the site with uses complementing the school and commercial uses with residential above and flexible commercial space at other key nodes within the site.
  • Off-site contribution towards improvements to pitches and facilities at Gors Common, including required drainage measures.
  • Provide a major east west Green Corridor with new and retained planting, a NEAP, informal and formal recreation, play for older children, kickabout areas and shared pedestrian cycle routes.
  • Provide a Village Green with new planting and a LEAP, set within a prominent green copse within the east west Green Corridor.
  • A Local Green to be provided with a LEAP in the southern part of the development area.
  • Enhancement of retained wet semi improved fields to the north east for biodiversity.
  • Improvement of links to Mynydd Garn Goch Common SINC.
  • Green Corridors should be robustly planted with native local provenance tree stock and suitably managed in the long term to provide opportunity for wildlife to migrate across the site.
  • Explore feasibility of provision of Extra Care Home facility.
  • On and off-site measures including any appropriate upgrades to the clean water supply or public sewerage networks.
  • Take measures to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language as outlined within a Welsh Language Action Plan submitted with the planning application
  • Provision of affordable housing at the on-site target rate of 20% subject to consideration of financial viability.

Click to view Site SD C

2.3.34

The site is located on some 50 hectares of land south of Penllergaer and west of the A483. The area consists largely of fields separated by hedgerows and the Parc Mawr farm buildings. Access to the site is currently via a single carriageway from Swansea Road. 

2.3.35

This strategic site will deliver up to 850 dwellings, however only 644 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period. Development at the site must include a new Primary School, new local centre, community facilities, and extensive recreational space, which in combination will serve to improve local connectivity and enhance the provision of community facilities and social infrastructure within the area. The precise quantum of community facilities and commercial uses to be delivered will be explored through the masterplanning, however these will be limited to small scale provision orientated towards serving the day-to-day needs of future residents. The mix of uses are anticipated to incorporate Class A1 – A3 uses, as well as the opportunity to provide a primary care facility in association with any proposals from the ABMU Health Board. Residential uses on the upper floors of commercial premises can create density in this area that is distinct from other residential parts of the site. At the heart of this proposal is the delivery of a new focus to the community, based around a strong sense of place and high quality design with new homes set in an attractive environment, benefitting from local opportunities to spend leisure and recreation time and with access to improved local facilities.

2.3.36

The development of a new primary school will provide a potential community facility in a central location for use by the existing and new community. Its delivery must be phased in accordance with a program to be agreed with the Council to ensure its completion before beneficial occupation of the total number of proposed dwellings.

2.3.37

This proposal is predicated on the delivery of a new spine street to serve the site that will also provide a through link from the A4240 Gorseinon Road to the A484 Llanelli Link Road to the south. This new infrastructure has potential to provide a strategic function and alleviate congestion in the area, as well as deliver an attractive route designed to encourage walking and cycling. A ‘through route’ to either the A483 or A484 must be delivered prior to a significant proportion of the homes and associated development coming forward at the site. All transport proposals for the area will be subject to further detailed assessments, which will consider the wider impact on the transport network and the opportunities for sustainable travel. 

2.3.38
Further details of on and off-site highway measures
are set out in the Transport Measures Priorities
Schedule (See Appendix 5)
2.3.39

The existing historic farm group and network of field hedge boundaries, plus prominent skyline trees are important site features and the retention of these within the public realm areas is an opportunity to give the new place a distinct sense of place that is rooted in the context.

2.3.40

Significant areas will be retained as Green Infrastructure within the development including a well-defined east west Green Corridor. These areas of greenspace will provide focal spaces, attractive opportunities for recreation, new and retained planting and surface water drainage features. This could include additional sports facilities and/or opportunities for local food production as appropriate. 

2.3.41

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

2.3.42

A Welsh Language Action Plan (WLAP) sets out the measures to be taken to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language. Planning permission will be subject to conditions of legal agreement requiring the implementation of the recommendations of the WLSP. Policy HC 3 provides further guidance in relation to the contents of a WLAP.

Amended Concept Plan

Policy SD D: WEST OF LLANGYFELACH ROAD, PENDERRY –

Site D is allocated for a comprehensive, residential led, development of circa 1,088 homes during the Plan period, incorporating a mix of low-medium and high density residential, a new district centre with commercial units, primary school, a mix of public realm, open space and play provision and a new community building.

Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner to be formally tied into planning consents.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES:

• Create a significant new sustainable urban village, comprising of a number of character areas, with a structure of walkable neighbourhoods and which provides the full range of community facilities, Active Travel networks, public transport networks, plus open space for the new and existing community.

• Create a multi-functional Green Infrastructure network throughout the site, taking account of the need to create healthy communities, with a particular emphasis on integrating landscape features, protecting biodiversity, habitat creation and native provenance tree planting, and supporting a range of opportunities for formal and informal play, and community led food growing.

• Provide a mix of higher densities at the local centre and at key points in the layout and lower densities on the rural/sensitive edges.

• Deliver a new local hub/local centre at an accessible point on the spine street, with a focal public realm area, which includes units for commercial and/or community uses with active frontages and flexibility for residential and/or commercial on upper floors.

• Ensure a positive relationship with any existing retained buildings on site, and with Mynyddbach Chapel and its setting.

DEVELOPMENT REQUIREMENTS

• Full primary and secondary contributions to reflect the impact of the development to be provided through new build 2.5 form entry Primary school.

• A new internal spine street to provide access to the development area and connect Heol Ddu and Llangyfelach Road.

• Extension of the spine street within the site to provide for a connection to a future highway link that will connect the site to the A48 to the north.

• Off-site highway infrastructure improvements as necessary, having regard to requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment and as identified on the Transport Measures Priority Schedule, including the potential requirement for a future highway link outside the site to connect the development areas to the A48 to the north.

• On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages, both to and within the new development area, including linkages identified on the Transport Measures Priority Schedule as follows: AT 19- Links to footpaths to the west of the site, AT20- Central Shared Use path, AT21- Peripheral link.

• Incorporate existing PROW within the development by appropriate diversion and enhancement to form legible and safe routes. Utilise the existing farm lane – Penplas Road – as an Active Travel (bridleway footpath) route.

• (Delete Bullet Point) New local centre uses to include o (Delete Bullet Point) commercial uses with residential above

• Provide 2 formal pitches and changing rooms in and accessible location to both the existing and proposed communities as a focal point in the neighbourhood to be managed by local sports clubs/ Community Council or third party.

• Retain and provide suitable buffers to habitats, trees, hedgerows and SINC. A suitable buffer strip will be created along the western and northern site edge bordering the off-site SSSI.

• New proposed balance ponds should receive supplementary native local provenance planting to provide cover for wildlife and links to existing habitats.

• Integrate any retained farm buildings for sustainable use.

• Explore feasibility of provision of Extra Care Home facility.

• Take measures to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language as outlined within a Welsh Language Action Plan submitted with the planning application.

Click to view Site SD D


Amended Concept Plan

2.3.43

At 114 ha this is the largest residential led SDA in the Plan. The site area is located north of Heol Ddu and Mynydd Newydd Road, and west of Llangyfelach Road, Mynyddbach. The land is mainly of low grade agricultural fields separated by hedgerows and trees, and gently slopes down from south to north, falling away to the northern and western boundaries. This strategic site will deliver up to 1,950 dwellings, however approximately 1,088 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period.

2.3.44

The site is bounded to the south east by the former Daniel James Secondary School and associated grounds, along with an area of common land. It is bounded to the north west by a well-established farm lane beyond which is an SSSI.

2.3.45

The scale of the opportunity is to create an urban village based upon a number of new walkable neighbourhoods between Penplas and Llangyfelach. It also offers the opportunity to stimulate regeneration of the wider area, which comprises some of the most deprived parts of Swansea, by introducing and sustaining complementary facilities for both the existing and new communities to use. The provision of a community hub will create a variety of neighbourhood uses including a District Centre which should be positioned in an accessible location adjacent to the spine street and Green Corridor, and provide such facilitates as a supermarket, retail units, café/pub and other community facilities including a new Primary School.  

2.3.46

The development of a new primary school will provide a potential community facility in a central location for use by the existing and new community. Its delivery must be phased in accordance with a program to be agreed with the Council to ensure its completion before beneficial occupation of the total number of proposed dwellings.

2.3.47

A new spine street will be provided through the site from the B4489 Llangyfelach Road in the east to Mynydd Newydd Road in the south, which has significant potential to alleviate congestion within the area in combination with other infrastructure improvements. The ‘through route’ must be delivered prior to a significant proportion of the homes and associated development coming forward at the site. All transport proposals for the area will be subject to further detailed assessments, which will consider the wider impact on the transport network and the opportunities for sustainable travel. Such assessments will need to robustly consider the requirements set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule for an additional strategic link from the site to connect to the A48 (See Appendix 5). 

2.3.48

Off-site highway improvements will be undertaken to enhance the capacity of the surrounding network, and alleviate current issues of traffic congestion and air quality

2.3.49

Further details of on and off-site highway measures are set out in the Transport Measures Priorities Schedule (See Appendix 5).

2.3.50

Given the scale of the site, it must be based on distinct walkable neighbourhoods/character areas to ensure legibility. These neighbourhoods should retain and reuse any quality existing buildings worthy of retention such as the farm houses and barns/out buildings. Furthermore, quality landscape features such as hedges, field trees and tree groups should be retained and integrated into the masterplan not only to provide ecological functions, but also to provide a strong and distinct sense of place. A number of east west Green Corridors will be a key feature of the site which will positively integrate existing communities and increase connectivity throughout the area. They will also integrate the site’s Green Infrastructure and accommodate opportunities for formal and informal play, Active Travel and SuDS. 

2.3.51

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

2.3.52

A Welsh Language Action Plan (WLAP) sets out the measures to be taken to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language. Planning permission will be subject to conditions or legal agreement requiring the implementation of the recommendations of the WLAP. Policy HC 3 provides further guidance in relation to the contents of a WLAP.

Policy SD E: NORTH OF CLASEMONT ROAD, MORRISTON –

Site E is allocated for a comprehensive, residential led, development of circa 490 homes during the Plan period, incorporating a primary school, leisure and recreation facilities, public open space and appropriate community facilities and commercial uses.

Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner and be formally tied into planning consents.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES:

• Create a walkable, sustainable residential extension to northern Morriston, comprising of a number of character areas that integrates positively with the existing community, Active Travel networks and public transport facilities, and provides community facilities and open space for the new and existing community.

• Provide a community hub incorporating a local centre co-located with a new Primary School adjacent to Clasemont Road, close to the junction with Long View Road, which includes commercial units, a mix of public realm, open space and play provision, and new community facilities with residential uses on upper floors.

• Create a focal public realm that corresponds with the local centre and Primary School.

• Include a mix of low-medium density residential with higher densities at the local centre and in key points in the layout, and lower densities at the rural sensitive edges.

• Create a multi-functional Green Infrastructure network throughout the site, with linear green spaces which correspond with service easements, taking account of the need to create healthy communities, with a particular emphasis on retaining existing trees and hedgerows within the public realm and introducing appropriate landscaping, community led food growing and habitat creation.

• Provide a street hierarchy which enables provides easy access to the public open space and nature reserve surrounding the site.

DEVELOPMENT REQUIREMENTS

• Deliver a 2 form entry Primary School with playing pitches located in an accessible location to the north of Morriston during early phases of the scheme to serve new and existing residents by all travel modes. School to provide an adequate drop off area and incorporate changing facilities that must be available for use by the community in association with the school playing fields.

• Off-site highways infrastructure improvements as necessary having regard to requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment, including improvements as set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule .

• On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages, both to and within the new development area, incorporating the linkages shown on the concept plan and set out in in The Transport Measures Priority Schedule., including Ref AT26-SE to NW corners of the development area, along with a number of to other subsidiary routes, including linkages to the nature reserve.

• Incorporate existing PROW within the development by appropriate diversion and enhancement to form legible and safe routes. Specifically, retain existing track as bridleway or footpath.

• New local centre uses will be provided adjacent to and facing Clasemont Road adjacent to Long View Road junction to accommodate a range of retail, business and community facilities with active frontages and residential above.

• Provide new pitches as an accessible focal point within the new neighbourhood. • Retain and provide suitable buffers to habitats, trees, hedgerows and wetlands, meadow common land and SINCs on the edge of the site. The SINC should be excluded from the development and appropriately managed.

• Protection, enhancement, and additional habitat creation in the mixed deciduous woodland nature reserve to the north of the site.

• Appropriate management of remaining species rich neutral grassland will be required to encourage floristic diversity as lowland meadow grasslands.

• On and off-site measures including any appropriate upgrades to the clean water supply or public sewerage networks.

• Take measures to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language as outlined within a Welsh Language Action Plan submitted with the planning application. 

Click to view Site SD E

2.3.53

This site provides for the extension of Morriston to an area of land immediately south of the M4 motorway just east of junction 46. The site is a 24 hectare wedge–shaped area of land comprising a number of field parcels sloping down between Clasemont Road and west of Morriston Golf Club.

2.3.54

Approximately 17 ha is proposed for up to 600 dwellings, 490 of which are likely to be delivered during the Plan period, plus a new build Primary school and some mixed commercial uses fronting Clasemont Road. 

2.3.55

The development of a new Primary School will provide a potential community facility in a central location for use by the existing and new community. Its delivery must be phased in accordance with a program to be agreed with the Council to ensure its completion before beneficial occupation of the total number of proposed dwellings. 

2.3.56

The density of this site is potentially higher than for the other SDAs as described in the general masterplan policy requirements, due to the aspirations of the site promoters. The site forms part of the Morris Estate. During the 1780’s, Sir John Morris was responsible for laying out Morriston to a high density grid pattern, creating one of the first planned industrial towns in the UK. The quality of that scheme and the legacy it established is reflected in its designation as a conservation area today.  

2.3.57

The vision for the SDA site is therefore to create a modern day legacy project that balances a contemporary approach to suburban intensification whilst making a clear reference back to the original Morriston principles, by delivering a higher density walkable place with significant areas of open space. It must be noted that the capacity of up to 600 dwellings is based on a Placemaking and architectural approach of the highest quality which is endorsed by the Design Commission for Wales. If the quality of the scheme is eroded then the capacity will need to be reassessed through the development management process. To create distinctiveness, the development will also need to work with the topography of the site, and retain trees and historic field boundaries as focal areas in the public realm. 

2.3.58

The primary access in to the site will be via a new spine street from Clasemont Road. Off-site highway improvements will also be undertaken to enhance the capacity of the surrounding network, and alleviate issues of traffic congestion and air quality. Active Travel routes are necessary to provide linkages with existing established adjacent communities and proposed new developments in the vicinity such as the larger SDA to the north west of the site at Felindre. 

2.3.59

Further details of on and off-site highway measures are set out in the Transport Measures Priorities Schedule (See Appendix 5)

2.3.60

Land to the north of the development site abutting the motorway is of high biodiversity value and will be retained and enhanced as a nature reserve/ wetland area.

2.3.61

Development of the site also creates the opportunity to provide an active travel route for pedestrians and cyclists between Clasemont Road and Pantlassau Road which links to Morriston Hospital. 

2.3.62

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

2.3.63

A Welsh Language Action Plan (WLAP) sets out the measures to be taken to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language. Planning permission will be subject to conditions or legal agreement requiring the implementation of the recommendations of the WLAP. Policy HC 3 provides further guidance in relation to the contents of a WLAP.

Amended Concept Plan

Policy SD F: CEFN COED HOSPITAL, COCKETT –

Site F is allocated for a comprehensive residential led, mixed use development of circa 371 homes during the Plan period, incorporating leisure and recreation facilities, public open space and retained health facilities.

Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner and be formally tied into planning consents.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES

• Create new sustainable neighbourhood as an extension of Tycoch, comprising of a number of character areas that integrate positively with the existing community, community facilities, Active Travel networks and existing retained buildings.

• Retain and convert selected hospital buildings at Cefn Coed which are of local architectural and historic interest such as the water tower.

• Create a multi-functional Green Infrastructure network throughout the site, taking account of the need to create healthy communities with a particular emphasis on retaining existing trees and hedgerows within the public realm, and introducing appropriate landscaping, community led food growing opportunities and habitat creation.

 • Include a mix of low-medium density residential, with higher densities in and adjacent to the retained hospital buildings on the plateau area and in, and lower densities at the rural sensitive edges.

• Development should be designed as a positive feature in the landscape, addressing views of the site, and development should not exceed the scale of existing skyline buildings.

DEVELOPMENT REQUIREMENTS

• New spine street aligned with existing site access from Waunarlwydd Road and further primary street to follow the alignment of the original perimeter road and to provide a link to the western boundary of the site.

• Off-site highway improvements having regard to the requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment including improvements as set out in The Transport Measures Priority Schedule.

• On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages both to and within the new development areas, in accordance with Active Travel Design and specifically accommodate linkages through the site to Llwyn Mawr Road, to the new phase one development off Lon Masarn and to Waunarlwydd Road.

• Create new connecting PROWs within the site to form legible and safe routes for community and school access.

• Contributions to existing Primary and Secondary schools in the catchment area.

• Provide sport pitches on site, potentially through the improvement of the existing pitch (or areas to the north).

• Retain trees lines as a buffer to development, including to the rear of properties at Pant-yrOdyn and Bryn Derwen; and retain and enhance wooded areas to the east of the site.

• Area to the north east of the site to be kept free of development and managed as nature reserve.

• 11.8 ha of land on the ridgeline to the north of the hospital are subject to a legal agreement relating to use for recreation, open space, landscape and wildlife conservation purposes only.

• On and off-site measures including any appropriate upgrades to the clean water supply or public sewerage networks.

Click to view Site SD F

2.3.64

The Cefn Coed Hospital site is a 32 hectare site in an elevated position located in the largely residential area of Cockett. The site is dominated by the Cefn Coed hospital buildings on a central plateau of the site, and associated land to the north and west is orientated towards the countryside and bounded by designated greenspace. Land to the south and east is formed of a series of fields and bounded by the existing built up area. This strategic site will deliver up to 427 dwellings, however only 371 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period.  

2.3.65

Many of the hospital buildings are in a disused and dilapidated condition and surplus to NHS operational requirements. NHS use of the site is being scaled back with only 2.9 ha retained for health care uses and the Swansea Psychiatry Education Centre. The remaining buildings are not listed buildings but some do have particular a historic and landmark character (such as the water tower which is widely visible on the skyline). Some of the remaining buildings are certainly historic assets of special local interest and there is an opportunity to retain and re-use these buildings for residential use.

2.3.66

The existing pitch on the hospital site is identified as a key element of outdoor sports facilities in the Open Space Assessment for Sketty Ward. Without this pitch there is a significant deficiency of accessible pitch space in the northern part of the ward. Therefore the pitch needs to be retained or provided within the SDA development area.

Amended Concept Plan 

2.3.67

Land on the ridgeline to the north of the hospital (11.8 ha) is subject to a legal agreement relating to use for recreation, open space, landscape and wildlife conservation purposes only. Existing tree lines should be retained as a buffer and wooded areas to the east of the site should be retained and enhanced. The Council will seek to amend the legal agreement where required to facilitate agreed development proposals for the site, subject to open space provision being provided elsewhere within the site for recreation use.

2.3.68

In accordance with the principles of Green Infrastructure set out in Policy ER 2, the site will be required to create new connecting PROW’s within the development.

2.3.69

An outline application for the first phase of development (up to 73 dwellings) to the south of the site served off Lon Masarn has been approved subject to s106 agreement. This part of the site is served by a single access and is unconnected to the rest of the development area. It is important that future phases are properly integrated with Active Travel routes and appropriate highway connections.

2.3.70

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

Policy SD G: NORTHWEST OF M4 J46, LLANGYFELACH –

Site G is allocated for a comprehensive mixed use development of circa 565 homes during the Plan period, incorporating a mix of low-medium and high density residential, a new local centre with commercial units, primary school, a mix of public realm, open space and play provision, new community buildings, and a strategic business park with 14 hectares of potential development areas that could accommodate appropriate B1 and B2 uses.

Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner to be formally tied into planning consents.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES

  • Create a regional business park and new interlinked villages, comprising a number of linked character areas integrated into the rural landscape, which are well connected by Active Travel routes and public transports facilities, and between them provides appropriate community facilities and open space.
  • Create a multifunctional Green Infrastructure network throughout the site, taking account of the need to create healthy communities, with a particular emphasis on retaining trees and strengthening existing hedgerows, and introducing appropriate landscaping, community led food growing opportunities, and habitat creation.
  • Provide a mix of higher densities at key points in the layout and around the local centre and lower densities on the rural/sensitive edges.
  • Deliver a spine street of rural character and design through the villages.
  • Deliver a new local centre/hub at an accessible point on the spine street, with a primary school, a focal public realm, which includes units for commercial and/or community uses with active frontages and flexibility for residential and/or commercial on upper floors.
  • Include a village green/public realm as the focus of the new settlement, within walking range of all the new housing areas.
  • Include a range of high quality housing with a mixture of tenures; high sustainability standards for buildings and the possibility of pioneering/exemplar schemes.
  • Ensure a positive relationship to the character, historic interest and setting of the Grade II listed Tredegar Fawr House and Farm group (LB334/335) and curtilage structures.
  • Retain and enhance farm lanes as Active Travel routes.
  • Retain and provide suitable buffers to habitats, particularly trees, hedgerows and SINCs within the site.
  • Locate pitches as accessible focal points in the new neighbourhood.

DEVELOPMENT REQUIREMENTS

  • Provide a 2.5 form entry Primary school with the potential to provide community facilities to be sited in a central location adjacent to the Local Centre to create a heart to the interlinked village concept.
  • New spine street to link the proposed villages and adjacent new communities to the A48 at Bryntywod to the south of the M4.
  • Off-site highway infrastructure improvements as necessary, having regard to requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment and including as set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule.
  • On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages, both to and within the new development area, incorporating the following linkages and as set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule:
    • AT22 Bryntywod link SDA to A48, AT23 SDA local facilities; and
    • Create new connecting PROWs within the site to form legible and safe routes.
    • Retain bridleway linkage ref LC/84/3- part of bus route link.
  • Areas to the North West of the Village will be retained enhanced and managed as a habitat management area.
  • Mature woodlands identified on the Concept Plan will be retained, enhanced and managed with appropriate provision for public access.
  • On and off-site measures including any appropriate upgrades to the clean water supply or public sewerage networks.
  • Take measures to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language as outlined within a Welsh Language Action Plan submitted with the planning application.
  • Provision of affordable housing at the on-site target rate of 20% subject to consideration of financial viability.

Click to view Site SD G

2.3.71

The vision for this SDA is to create a regional business park and new interlinked villages that are walkable and also well connected to the existing urban area, and which provides community facilities and open space for the new and existing community. It will be made distinctive through its relationships to protected historic buildings and landscape features, integration of green infrastructure and high quality sustainable design.

2.3.72

The site of the former tinplate works at Felindre located North of Junction 46 of the M4 has already been prepared for use as a serviced Strategic Business Park for B1 and B2 uses to accommodate emerging industries, high tech manufacturing, high level services and ancillary uses along with car parking. Land at Felindre will play a key role in the economic growth of Swansea. This strategic site will deliver up to 800 dwellings, however only 565 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period.

2.3.73

Welsh Government and the Council are jointly promoting the site for employment and significant investment has been made in the acquisition of land, site reclamation, site preparation and providing infrastructure, including a new junction on the M4 motorway and a new site access road. 

2.3.74

Land north west of the Felindre business park also provides the opportunity to create high quality attractive new sustainable urban villages with the potential to continue to grow beyond the Plan period. A Masterplan for the villages will be produced by the Welsh Government, which is required to be in accordance with Plan policy. The development must create a distinctive urban form with a strong sense of place and legibility by developing neighbourhoods which consider the context of the site, integrate historic lanes, respond to local topography and respect the setting of the listed farm group. A village green will be a significant focus of the new settlement with a variety of other commercial and community uses to create a vibrant hub which is within walking range of all the new housing areas.

2.3.75

Delivery of the site will require new and enhanced highway infrastructure in accordance with the Transport Measures Priority Schedule (see Appendix 5), particularly in relation to measures at the means of access through Bryntywod and over the existing bridge. A new link is proposed from the spur at Junction 46 to Pantlassau Road, to be delivered in conjunction with the expansion and redevelopment proposals for Morriston Hospital being advanced by the ABMU Health Board. Whilst the delivery of this link is not a requirement for site SD G to come forward, this link does provide an opportunity to extend a high frequency public transport connection that currently serves the hospital thereby enhancing the sustainability credentials of the site.

2.3.76

Landscape features such as hedges, field trees and mature tree groups are not only an important part of the site’s ecological value but an important part of the site’s sense of place and must be integrated into the masterplan and form part of the site’s Green Infrastructure. Mature woodlands within the site, areas of priority habitat and designated SINCs are excluded from the development areas and should be managed and enhanced with appropriate access which prevents habitat damage.

2.3.77

In accordance with the principles of Green Infrastructure set out in in Policy ER 2, the site will be required to create new connecting PROW’s within the development. 

2.3.78
A Welsh Language Action Plan (WLAP) sets out the measures to be taken to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh language.  Planning permission will be subject to conditions or legal agreement requiring the implementation of the recommendations of the WLAP.  Policy HC 3 provides further guidance in relation to the contents of a WLAP.

Policy SD H: NORTH OF WAUNARLWYDD/FFORESTFACH –

Site H is allocated for a comprehensive mixed use development of circa 716 homes during the Plan period, incorporating, public realm, a primary school, commercial units, community buildings and a Regional Employment Site with 26 hectares of potential development areas that could accommodate appropriate B1, B2 and B8 uses.

Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner and be formally tied into planning consents.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES

• Create a sustainable neighbourhood as a distinct extension to the existing settlements of Waunarlwydd, Fforestfach and Gowerton with significant opportunities for employment uses.

• Create a multi-functional Green Infrastructure network throughout the site, taking account of the need to create healthy communities, with a particular emphasis on a new east-west linear park and nature reserve along the River Llan as a key feature of the site, which will integrate the landscape, protect biodiversity, include appropriate landscaping, and opportunities for formal and informal play, recreation, Active Travel and community led food growing.

• Provide a mix of densities with higher densities adjacent to Gowerton Station and lower densities on the rural/sensitive edges.

• Design development to be viewed in the landscape and face buildings onto the protected open space.

• Retain existing businesses and create a site for regional employment with direct access from A484.

• Ensure that buffer uses are located between employment uses and residential uses.

• Create an accessible site which integrates positively with existing communities public transport facilities, and Active Travel

. • Face homes and employment buildings onto streets and open spaces including the river corridor, to ensure a positive relationship, community safety as well as strong sense of place.

DEVELOPER REQUIREMENTS

Locate new Primary school centrally to serve the area, where it is readily accessible by all travel modes.

• A new spine street with appropriate new roundabout junctions, and a vehicular and pedestrian bridge over the River Llan, will be provided from the A484 Llanelli link road to the Alcoa access road to the south to open up the site for development, enhance the capacity and reduce congestion on the surrounding road network and support growth across the wider area

. • Off-site highway infrastructure improvements as necessary, having regard to requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment, and as set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule.

• Provide a Park and Ride facility and public transport interchange on the north side of Gowerton Railway Station.

• On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, safe, legible and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages, both to and within the new development area, incorporating the following linkages and as set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule.

• On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, safe, legible and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages both to and within the new development area in accordance with Active Travel Design, should include the linkages set out in the LDP Transport Measures Priority schedule and as indicated below:

- AT15, AT16, AT17 and utilise Bridge Road to link to Waunarlwydd.

• Incorporate existing PROW within the development by appropriate diversion and enhancement to form legible and safe routes. Specifically include the following as shown on the Concept Plan

: - Retain PROW no LC71, LC101, LC72, C0 600 - Retain North South linkages between River Lliw and Spine Street as dedicated rights of way

- Incorporate footbridge link over River Lliw • Provide a 2.5 form entry Primary school.

• New pitches will be provided as accessible focal point within the new neighbourhoods.

• Public open space should form part of a buffer area between the employment area and new residential district. 

• Provide a minimum of 7m development free buffer to allow for access for maintenance of the River Llan.

• On and off-site measures including any necessary upgrades to the clean water supply or public sewerage networks.

Provision of affordable housing at the on-site target rate of 20% subject to consideration of financial viability.

Click to view Site SD H

Amended Concept Plan

 
2.3.79

A strategic development opportunity is identified to the north of Gowerton and Waunarlwydd and west of Fforestfach. It includes greenfield areas of farms and agricultural holdings and existing brownfield and industrial areas associated with the former Alcoa site now known as the Westfield Industrial Park, TIMET UK Ltd, and the site of the former greyhound stadium. The site lies either side of Swansea/Carmarthen Road and the River Llan, which runs towards the Bury Estuary to the west. This strategic site is capable of delivering circa 1,320 dwellings, however only circa 720 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period.

2.3.80

The area currently fulfils an important role as a strategic employment location with a number of valued businesses, and these should continue to be supported during the Plan period. Whilst an area of around 26 Ha is proposed to come forward for employment development over the Plan period, the total area of the site for potential B Class employment generating development is in excess of this. The area shown as the Employment/ Regeneration Area on the Concept Plan has significant potential to provide additional strategic scale investment, should such an opportunity come forward over and above demand forecasts. The inter-relationship between residential uses and employment operations will need to be managed through the masterplanning process to provide adequate buffers between such uses, and appropriate amenity safeguards in accordance with relevant Plan policies. B1 office uses should be ancillary to associated B Class industrial uses, unless a sequential assessment has demonstrated that no appropriate site is available within the Swansea Central Area, in accordance with the requirements of Policy RC 12. 

2.3.81

In order for this area to fully achieve its potential, future development must address the existing constraints associated with transport access and congestion on the surrounding network. As such the proposed SDA at this location is based on delivering a mix of employment, residential and supporting uses including educational facilities, served by a new spine street from the A484 Llanelli Link Road to the north. Full delivery of the access road to serve the employment area is required prior to a significant proportion of the homes on the greenfield site being brought forward.

2.3.82

The provision of a new spine street will open up the site for development and reduce congestion and create additional capacity on the surrounding road network where existing problems serve to constrain growth.

2.3.83

Providing safe, accessible and attractive walking and cycling linkages between the site and adjacent communities, and connection to wider strategic Active Travel routes and new Strategic Development Areas in this part of Swansea will be a key priority to ensure the development promotes genuine sustainable travel options. Furthermore the location of the new Primary School required for this SDA will need to be central and highly accessible for both new and existing residents. The location of the site also presents an opportunity to create a park and ride facility at Gowerton rail station. The frequency of rail services have significantly increased following recent work to reinstate the dual tracks and a park and ride facility will offer sustainable travel options for those in the wider north and west of the County (including the SDA sites) to access Swansea City Centre and further afield. There is also the opportunity to maximise residential densities in close proximity to the rail station. The primary means of access to the rail park and ride will be via the new spine street from the east. Fairwood Terrace may provide a secondary access to the park and ride to serve a limited number of spaces and an element of residential development, the scale of which will be determined through a detailed Transport Assessment. A through-route from Fairwood Terrace to the wider development areas within site SD H will not be permitted due to highway infrastructure constraints. Detailed design and appropriate traffic management measures will be required to prevent any opportunity for vehicle movements of this nature. 

2.3.84

The proposals will promote the provision of enhanced green infrastructure, access to open space and recreation facilities. The River Lliw will form part of a new East West linear park and nature reserve along the River Lliw as a key feature of the site, which will integrate the landscape, biodiversity and support a range of green infrastructure and opportunities for play, recreation and Active Travel.

2.3.85

A buffer area south of the existing retained industrial uses, which includes appropriate employment uses and landscaping, should be included in any masterplan proposals to contribute towards enhancing the visual amenity of the site if the adjacent area to the south is developed for residential uses and to ensure that uses appropriate to the continued viability of the existing employment uses are proposed.

2.3.86

Within the greenfield areas of the site, the existing field hedge boundaries are important landscape features and the retention of these within the public realm is an opportunity to give the place a distinct sense of place that is rooted in the context. No residential development will be permitted in any part of the site affected by Zone C2 flood risk. Such areas will be expected to form part of the Green Infrastructure network to be integrated into proposals.

2.3.87

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

Policy SD I:SWANSEA VALE –

Site I is allocated for a comprehensive, residential led, mixed use development of circa 410 homes during the Plan period, and the completion of the Swansea Vale business park for commercial and employment use with 4 hectares of potential development areas that could accommodate appropriate B1 and B2 uses, with appropriate leisure uses.
 
Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which are depicted on the Concept Plan and which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner and be formally tied into planning consents:
 
PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES
 
Complete the Tregof Village development with further residential development and local centre co-located with the existing community hub. 
 
Create new sustainable neighbourhood as an expansion of Llansamlet, comprising of a number of character areas, that integrates positively with the existing community, community facilities, Active Travel network and public transport facilities.
 
Provide sensitive infill within the Peniel Green community for a combination of residential development, convenience retail and locally focused business development opportunities. 
 
Provide regional employment opportunities within the existing Riverside and Central business park areas.
 
Create a multifunctional Green Infrastructure network throughout the site, taking account of the need to create healthy communities, with a particular emphasis on creating a linear park within the site that facilitates Active Travel, retaining trees and strengthening existing hedgerows and including appropriate landscaping, habitat creation and community led food growing opportunities.
 
Provide a mix of higher densities at key points in the layout and around the Tregof local centre with lower densities on the rural/sensitive edges .
 
Protect, enhance and manage areas of priority habitats and greenspace, including the nature reserve and Llansamlet Ecology Park.
 
Developments should positively reflect local aspects of history and local character such as the setting of Llansamlet Conservation Area, setting of St. Samlet’s Church and route of Smiths canal.
 
DEVELOPMENT REQUIREMENTS
 
Internal spine street to run broadly North to South through the Llansamlet East development area from Walters Road to Blawdd Road, with new roundabout junctions designed to provide appropriate flood free access in accordance with the requirements of TAN 15 Development Flood Risk (2004).
 
Off-site highway infrastructure improvements as necessary, having regard to requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment and detailed transport modelling and the Transport Measures Priority Schedule. 
 
On and off-site measures to provide good quality, safe and attractive walking and cycling routes both to and within the site in accordance with Active Travel Design, including the linkages set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule Refs AT 31-east to west Green Corridor link, AT32, AT33, AT34, and off-site Active Travel route to Llansamlet Railway Station and Park and Ride. 
 
Provision of a new Park and Ride facility at Llansamlet. 
 
Provide contributions fo r existing Primary and Secondary Schools in the catchment area. 
 
Provide a major east west Green Corridor with new and retained trees and hedgerows, appropriate new landscaping, formal and informal play provision, and Active Travel. 
 
Developers will have regard to the risks of flooding and any necessary flood mitigation and resilience measures in the design of new development.
 
Enabling works to mitigate the effects of flood risk from the Nant Bran and associated watercourses on the eastern side of Swansea Vale (Llansamlet East).
 
Protect, enhance and manage the Llansamlet Nature Reserve and Llansamlet Ecology Park and manage invasive species across the area in accordance with agreed management plans.
 
On and off-site measures including any appropriate upgrades to the clean water supply or public sewerage networks.
 
Click to view Site SD I
2.3.88

The Swansea Vale development area is a 190ha mixed use regeneration and development area located south of Junctions 44 and 45 of the M4. This strategic site will deliver up to a maximum of 450 dwellings, however only 410 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period. The original Swansea Vale Development Strategy was adopted in 1991, and the scheme is being delivered through a longstanding Joint Venture Agreement between the Council and Welsh Government. The Strategy was updated in 2012 and it is intended to adopt a version of the Strategy as SPG to the LDP.

2.3.89

The vision for this Strategic Development Area is to complete the Tregof urban village concept supported by facilities and open space. It will also complete the employment opportunities and will be made distinctive through the retention of landscape features, integration of green infrastructure and high quality design. It will also support improved opportunities for Active Travel. 

Amended Concept Plan

2.3.90

The location of the site also presents an opportunity to create a park and ride facility at Llansamlet Railway Station. This will offer sustainable travel options for those in the wider north and east of the County (including the SDA sites and traffic from the M4 motorway) to access Swansea City Centre and further afield. Delivery of the Park and Ride will be in conjunction with the Council, who will bid for funding through the traditional transport capital infrastructure grants system during the Plan period. Although currently not featured within the Local Transport Plan, this measure will be included within the next update to ensure that it is suitably consolidated as a project for delivery in the coming years. The Council will also be undertaking a review of its rail strategy, which presents an opportunity to create and enhance a park and ride facility.

2.3.91

A £7m new flood risk scheme was implemented for the River Tawe in 2013 which provided an improved standard of flood protection for the Swansea Vale and Enterprise Park area. Further works are programmed to address flood risks from other watercourses in parts of the Llansamlet east development area. 

2.3.92

In response to issues of flood risk constraints affecting the area, a comprehensive review was undertaken in 2011 to update the Swansea Vale Development Strategy. A version of the strategy will be adopted as SPG to supplement the Plan. 

2.3.93

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

Policy SD J: SWANSEA CENTRAL AREA –

Site J is allocated for a range of regeneration projects with the overall aim of creating a vibrant, distinctive, Central Area that capitalises on its unique assets to become a destination of regional and national significance. It includes proposals for a high quality retail and leisure led scheme, mixed use waterfront developments, circa 856 homes, 4 hectares of potential development areas that could accommodate B1 uses, and area initiatives and environmental enhancements during the Plan period. Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner and be formally tied into planning consents.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES

  • St Davids/Quadrant Site
    • The St Davids/Quadrant site and LC car park area will be developed to create a comprehensive retail and leisure-led mixed-use place of a quality, scale and critical mass appropriate for a Regional Centre properly integrating, and complementing the existing Retail Centre. The development will create new streets and spaces with active edges and an urban scale including a high quality built edge and active frontages to Oystermouth Road.
    • North south pedestrian and cycle linkages will be strengthened with an improved crossing over Oystermouth Road.
    • Create a new high quality gateway location.
    • Existing listed St Marys’ Church and St David’s Priory should be treated as focal points.
    • Provision of high quality car parking for the redevelopment and wider Central Area.
    • New innovative public realm and public open spaces with significant greening.
    • Wind Street − Reinforce and diversify the mixed use and leisure emphasis of the area with new family focused food and beverage offer.
    • Maintain and improve the quality of public spaces and pedestrian routes through the area particularly from the waterfront to the Retail Centre.
    • Consider the potential for enhancing and reconfiguring Castle Square to create a more useable space which supports activity and interest and responds positively to the setting of the Castle and Conservation Area.
    • Maintain and improve the quality of the public realm.
  • Oxford Street
    • Redevelop the Oxford Street surface car park to include active uses at ground floor and either residential or employment uses at upper level.
    • Refurbish Shoppers Walk and Picton Arcade as a focal area for small independent traders. − Upgrade the entrances to Swansea Market to make them more legible and welcoming whilst bringing some of the activity and vibrancy of the Market out into the street.
  • Kingsway and Orchard Street
    • Redevelop the former Oceana building for an employment led development, to act as a catalyst for the regeneration of the Kingsway as a new business district and an area that supports a range of opportunities for city living, working and learning.
    • Review traffic arrangements and public realm designs at the Kingsway, with wider pavements, greater use of planting and greening, space for street activity and improved crossing facilities. Such improvements will visually re-connect the two sides of the street, and improve connections to adjacent residential and business communities
  • High Street
    • Redevelop the Mariner Street Car Park for high density city living and to improve the sense of arrival at Swansea Railway Station.
    • Deliver improvements to Alexandra House/ Oldway House to upgrade the appearance and accommodate more active uses at ground floor. − Prioritise the reuse of the listed Palace Theatre as a catalyst project on the Upper High Street.
  • Mansel Street / Alexandra Road
    • Encourage relocation of existing businesses from Mansel Street to a new business district in the Central Area.
    • Environmental improvements at Alexandra Road specifically designed to complement the Glynn Vivian gallery as the cultural hub of the City.
    • Prioritise the reuse of the listed Albert Hall as a catalyst project.
  • Maritime Quarter
    • Deliver a new high quality public space with greenspace at the Sailbridge site to maximise the potential of this waterfront location and proximity to attractive buildings and historic areas.
    • Redevelop the former Pilkington site which is a key gateway site into the Central Area and must be developed in a high quality manner that links in scale and character with the adjacent Conservation Area.
    • Deliver schemes at waterfront sites at Swansea Point and opposite the Observatory which represent small but significant opportunities for leisure and facilities to support the attraction of the Waterfront as a destination
  • City Waterfront
    • Create a high quality landmark and comprehensive destination development in a unique location, particularly serving to improve the visitor potential of Swansea.
    • Develop a high quality mixed use scheme providing a commercial and leisure focus, with residential and community uses
    • Create high quality public realm for events, activity and play, linking the City Centre through to the seafront.
    • Provide appropriate public facilities to support increased use of the beach for events sports and recreation.
    • Facilitate the relocation of the Civic Centre to another City Centre site as a pre requisite for a major new seafront scheme
  • Parc Tawe Urban Gateway
    • Upgrade the built environment and public realm of the area, including as part of proposals to enhance the retail park.
    • Take opportunities to deliver the longer term aspiration for a new residential district, which has active frontages, is well connected to the river corridor and adjacent communities and businesses, and is complemented by associatedenvironmental enhancements, Green Infrastructure and appropriate commercial uses.
    • Enhance linkages between Parc Tawe retail park and surrounding areas, including to the Retail Centre and, riverfront as part of creating a distinct urban district and improved gateway site.

DEVELOPER REQUIREMENTS

  • Highway infrastructure improvements as necessary, having regard to requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessments and detailed transport modelling and including the following:
    • City Waterfront/Civic Centre/Paxton Street - Review junction arrangements.
    • St Davids south (LC2) site - Review junction arrangements
    • Kingsway- Reduce traffic levels and review traffic network arrangements.
    • Oxford Street/Westway - Review of access and traffic network arrangements.
  • Measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages, both to and within the Central Area, in accordance with Active Travel Design, and incorporating the following significant linkages:
    • High quality at grade or bridge crossing over Oystermouth Road at St Davids/LC2 site.
    • High quality pedestrian/cycle connection between the Waterfront/Civic Centre site and St Davids/Retail Centre.
    • Improved linkages between Parc Tawe and the Retail Centre.
  • Provide appropriate measures to manage the risks of flooding from fluvial, pluvial and tidal sources. • Provide opportunities for new and improved areas of public realm, incorporating space for public art, Green Infrastructure, play, events and activities.
  • New and improved street signage and furniture should be provided in accordance with current Council guidance. • Improve accessibility of the beach and waterspace and associated infrastructure at Swansea Bay and the River Tawe.
  • Management of foreshore sand and dunes, and protection and enhancement of River Tawe riparian corridor.
  • Public car parking provision should be adequate, accessible, well designed and appropriately distributed to meet the needs of shoppers, visitors and businesses.
  • Where assessed car parking demand cannot be met on site, contributions will be sought towards transportation initiatives to enhance alternative modes of transport or offsite parking provision.
  • Contributions to catchment schools.
  • On and off-site measures including any appropriate upgrades to the clean water supply or public sewerage networks.

Click to view Site SD J

Amended Concept Plan

2.3.94

The regeneration of Swansea Central Area is a corporate priority of the Council, and the area has the potential to create extensive economic growth, and be a key driver of economic prosperity in the Swansea Bay City Region. The Central Area needs a vibrant mix and right balance of leisure, culture, retail, office and residential uses all delivered in a legible way with high quality buildings and public spaces which celebrate the culture of Swansea and differentiate it from other cities. Further details, including development principles and objectives for the Swansea Central Area, are set out in the Swansea Central Area Regeneration Framework (2015)29 which provides SPG to the Plan.

29  http://www.swanseacitycentre.com/invest-business/city-centrestrategic-framework/

2.3.95

Delivering a new large scale retail scheme with a supporting leisure element at the St Davids/Quadrant site is the priority scheme to ensure the Centre is revitalised as an attractive regional shopping and leisure destination. Development must effectively connect with the existing Centre and provide for improved connectivity to the waterfront. Opportunities for other mixed uses such as leisure and city living will provide a diverse offer and experience that attracts footfall, spend and a thriving day and night time economy. Consolidating the retail uses within a defined Retail Led Centre which includes Oxford Street, Wind Street, and Princess Way supports the aim of providing a focal point for reinforcing a vibrant shopping and leisure experience.  

2.3.96

The identity and role of the other complementary areas around the Retail Led Centre, in areas such as Kingsway, the Maritime Quarter and High Street, all need to evolve and respond to the changes affecting the Central Area, such as changed shopping habits, vacancy rates and footfall. A range of regeneration proposals, catalyst projects, development and design principles are identified with the aim of maximising the strengths and attributes of the respective areas, and ensuring that all of the areas have a clear and economically viable role which complements the Retail Led Centre and ensures that the overall offer for the Central Area is differentiated from other cities. 

2.3.97

Key sites on Swansea’s waterfront such as the Civic eCentre, and Sailbridge site in the Maritime Quarter also have significant further potential to express Swansea’s distinctive character, and have the potential for landmark developments with high quality public realm that can generate high levels of activity that make positive use of the beach and riverside areas. 

2.3.98

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

2.3.99

This strategic site is expected to deliver up to 900 dwellings, however only 856 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period.

Policy SD K: FABIAN WAY CORRIDOR –

Site K is allocated for mixed commercial, residential (525 dwellings) and employment development with 12 hectares of potential development areas that could accommodate appropriate B1, B2 and B8 uses to complement the role of the Swansea Central Area as the City Region economic driver, facilitating an Innovation Corridor to support University expansion, and capturing the benefits of the planned Tidal Lagoon. The site includes a range of existing mixed commercial, residential, and employment areas. The SA1 Swansea Waterfront area has a masterplan linked to an existing planning consent that sets out uses for specific plots and capacities for various land uses.

Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES

  • Provide employment opportunities and economic benefits in accordance with City Region aspirations and complement other priority regeneration schemes within the Swansea Central Area.
  • Create sustainable residential (Use Class C2 and C3) neighbourhoods in appropriate locations with community facilities and necessary infrastructure.
  • Structure development around a new spine street which prioritises Active Travel and public transport linking Swansea University’s Bay Campus back to Swansea City Centre via the SA1 Innovation Quarter of University of Wales Trinity St David (UWTSD).
  • Developments at the City’s eastern gateway should respond to the gateway location, include active frontages, and make strong architectural statements with enhanced public realm which creates a sense of urban approach.
  • The eastern Waterfront, City Approach, Spine Street and other areas of public realm should be defined by active frontages, a coherent building line, continuity of character, legible entrances and an appropriate urban scale of development. Street frontages will be required to combine activity and architectural quality.
  • Facilitate the appropriate expansion of both Swansea University and UWTSD to enable the enhancement of their functions.
  • Create accessible sites which integrate positively with existing communities north and south of Fabian Way, public transport facilities, and Active Travel.

DEVELOPER REQUIREMENTS

  • Internal spine street linking Langdon Road to the Severn Way in the new Bay Campus.
  • Off-site highway infrastructure improvements as necessary, having regard to requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessment and the following:
    • Baldwins Bridge and junction improvements
    • New Junction on Fabian Way at Wern Fawr Road
  • On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible pedestrian and cycle linkages, both to and within the new development area, including the linkages set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule incorporating the following linkages from the site to AT42, AT43, AT44 and connection to communities north of Fabian Way.
  • Improving transport connectivity through the Corridor, including along the line of the protected Tennant Canal link.
  • The canal route should be safeguarded and enhanced with appropriate Green Infrastructure, appropriate landscaping and Active Travel routes.
  • Contributions to enhance/extend local catchment schools. Full Primary and Secondary contributions required.
  • Create a local centre to the north west of the protected canal corridor to serve the proposed new residential neighbourhood east of SA1, to comprise of small scale local commercial and convenience units.
  • Provision of sports opportunities on site in accordance with FiT requirements with potential for accessible off-site improvements at the Ashlands playing field.
  • Incorporate Noise and Air mitigation measures into developments where necessary (including fronting Fabian Way and the railway line).
  • Buffer uses that are not sensitive to impacts from docks uses will be required on development sites around it to separate dock operations from more vulnerable receptor uses.
  • Ensure that potential effects on the adjacent Crymlyn Bog European Site are subject to Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA). Only development which demonstrates compliance with the Habitats Regulations will be permitted.
  • On and off-site measures including any appropriate upgrades to the clean water supply or public sewerage networks. 
  • Provision of affordable housing at the on-site target rate of 15%, subject to consideration of financial viability.

Click to view Site SD K

Amended Concept Plan

2.3.100

The Fabian Way Corridor area stretches for 5 km along the A483 Fabian Way, which forms the eastern gateway road approach to Swansea City Centre from M4 Junction 42. It covers an area from the eastern bank of the River Tawe within the County boundary, to the Amazon roundabout within the NPT boundary. The eastern extent is limited by the Crymlyn Burrows European Site. To the south is Swansea Bay, Swansea Docks, and SA1 which is a substantial mixed use regeneration area centred around the Prince of Wales Dock. Its western edge extends to Swansea City Centre, whilst the north is edged by the Tennant Canal and established communities of St Thomas/Port Tennant. 

2.3.101

The vision for this SDA is to create a spine street that links the Bay Campus back to Swansea City Centre and opens up intervening land for development. This area will provide for significant employment opportunities, the expansion of education facilities for the Bay Campus, UWTSD, and the completion of the SA1 Innovation Quarter. It will be made distinctive through the relationship to water, integration of Green Infrastructure and high quality design. The site is situated adjacent to the highly protected Crymlyn Bog, which is designated a Ramsar Site, Special Area of Conservation (SAC), National Nature Reserve (NNR) and a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). Development in this location will need to demonstrate compliance with Policy ER 6 Designated Sites of Ecological Importance. A Habitat Regulations Assessment (HRA) will be required to fully assess the potential impact of the development on the European Site. Only development which demonstrates compliance with the Habitat Regulations will be permitted. Further details relating to the development principles and objectives for the site will be set out in a development framework for Fabian Way, which provides SPG to the Plan.

2.3.102

Certain sites within SA1 have been built out during the Plan period or have extant planning permission and these residential sites are listed as commitments in the Plan at Appendix 8. The proposed 525 dwellings for the site represents what can potentially be delivered across the allocation, in addition to any commitments, alongside the proposed commercial, and employment development. Subject to the suitable removal of site constraints there may exist potential for further residential uses on other land currently allocated for employment uses in the area east of SA1. 

2.3.103

It should be noted that further parts of the SDA extend beyond the County boundary as shown along Fabian Way Corridor into neighbouring Neath Port Talbot. 

2.3.104

The allocation comprises of three areas with their own place making frameworks combining activity and architectural quality. In addition the SA1 area has its own detailed masterplan including design codes. The 3 key areas are outlined below:

2.3.105

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

Policy SD L: TAWE RIVERSIDE AND HAFOD MORFA COPPERWORKS –

Land and buildings are allocated within L for a mixed use heritage and culture led regeneration site consisting of up to 258 dwellings, employment uses (B1), leisure and community uses, and contributing towards the preservation and enhancement of the area’s unique historic and cultural heritage.

Development proposals should accord with the following Placemaking Principles and Development Requirements, which should be delivered in an appropriately phased manner and be formally tied into planning consents.

PLACEMAKING PRINCIPLES

  • Mixed use heritage led project on Hafod/Morfa Copperworks site to include restoration of historic buildings, and provision of heritage visitor centre, employment, residential, hotel, and restaurant/bar uses to create a destination place.
  • Development proposals should positively reflect the historic industrial riverside character.
  • Development proposals must bring the listed copperworks buildings and other unlisted buildings of local interest back into use for appropriate new functions. Adjacent development must preserve and enhance the setting of heritage assets.
  • A coherent design approach should be adopted in key areas such as Morfa Road which represents a significant Spine Street.
  • Developments should face the river frontage and treat the river corridor as a key area of public realm and Green Infrastructure with appropriate environmental enhancements, including the provision of a riparian corridor and maximised accessibility to it.
  • Create a multi-functional Green Infrastructure network throughout the site, taking account of the need to create healthy communities, with a particular emphasis on facilitating active travel, and including appropriate landscaping, habitat creation and community led food growing opportunities.
  • Homes and employment buildings should face onto streets and open spaces to ensure community safety as well as a strong sense of place.
  • Use the topography of the site to create distinctive areas and address views towards the site and design development as a positive feature in the landscape.
  • Provide higher densities fronting the river corridor and along main street frontages, and provide lower densities on the sensitive edges.
  • Encourage greater active use of the river itself for travel and recreation.
  • Support appropriate proposals for changes of use at Morfa Road to residential use subject to detailed planning and highway considerations and compatibility with neighbouring uses.
  • Support the restoration and reopening of the listed Bascule Bridge for pedestrian/cycle use.
  • Enhance the East bank as a linear park with improved public access. • Enhance White Rock as a Heritage Park.

DEVELOPER REQUIREMENTS

  • Off-site highway infrastructure improvements as necessary, having regard to requirements arising from the necessary Transport Assessments and detailed transport modelling.
  • On and off-site measures to provide good quality, attractive, legible, safe and accessible walking and cycling routes both to and within the new development area in accordance with Active Travel design including the linkages set out in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule and incorporating the following linkages:
    • AT40 Tawe Riverside link (parallel to Morfa Road)
    • The reinstatement of the pedestrian bridge over the route of the former Swansea Canal
    • Improve access to Kilvey Hill
  • Contribution to the development of a potential new pedestrian cycleway bridge between Hafod Morfa Copper Works and White Rock.
  • Provision must be made for river boat travel with pontoons at the Morfa Stadium and Hafod Morfa Copper Works linking to pontoons in the vicinity of the Sailbridge.
  • Contributions to catchment Primary and Secondary schools.
  • Provide appropriate measures to manage the risks of flooding from fluvial, pluvial or tidal sources.
  • Retention, enhancement and management of the Tawe Riverside SINC, along with the provision of opportunities for priority species and habitat creation.
  • On and off-site measures including any appropriate upgrades to the clean water supply of public sewerage networks. 

Click to view Site SD L

2.3.106

The significant remains of the former Hafod and Morfa Copperworks is the focus of this Strategic Development Area. Located in the heart of the lower Swansea Valley opposite the Liberty Stadium, this 5 hectare riverfront site has numerous listed buildings and structures of importance for their industrial history, which represent a significant regeneration opportunity. Any development proposals must positively reflect the historic riverside character as identified in the. The Cadw characterisation report is an informal document which sets out an evaluation of character, leading to suggestions for building forms and details and should inform architectural proposals as part of the Placemaking approach set out within the Plan. Proposals for the heritage led regeneration of the site are being driven by ‘The Hafod/Morfa Copperworks Project’, a partnership project between the Council and Swansea University.

2.3.107
The Project seeks to deliver regeneration opportunities for the site through the restoration of the historic buildings and the creation of new uses, which will form part of a vibrant, multi-purpose hub for homes, work, education, leisure,  commercial activity and tourism. The site will also deliver  education and interpretation opportunities for both local residents and visitors. The vision for the site is set out in a development strategy for the Tawe Riverside, which will provide SPG to the Plan. This strategic site will deliver up to 370 dwellings, however only 258 units are considered likely to be delivered during the Plan period. These dwelling
numbers relate to C3 Use Class only.
2.3.108

A longer term aspiration for the site is to pursue designation as a World Heritage Site to recognise the linkages between the site and other industrial heritage sites both in Wales and across the world. It is vital therefore that the site is safeguarded from any proposals which would affect the quality of the heritage assets and preclude future applications for World Heritage Site Status. 

2.3.109

The recent Morfa Road project linking New Cut Road to Neath Road has opened up the west bank of the River Tawe for mixed use regeneration. It will be important to ensure that development provides active frontages to the River Tawe and road corridor, as well as pedestrian and cycle access to and along the waterfront. Due to the constrained nature of the sites in addition to on-site open space provision, the Council will require off-site contributions to enhance existing accessible sports pitches where necessary. 

2.3.110

The White Rock site and riverside corridor running down the Eastern bank of the river are key areas of green space, with significant heritage features designated as an ancient monument, with important Active Travel linkages to the City Centre and adjacent communities. Further landscaping and access works should be undertaken along the Park to enhance its appearance, acknowledge its heritage interest, improve its role as an attractive recreation area, and as an important wildlife corridor. In accordance with Policy RP 3 any development in the riverside corridor should incorporate a riparian corridor with a buffer of up to 7 metres adjoining both banks. This will allow for necessary maintenance by NRW and will protect and encourage local biodiversity.

2.3.111

Further details of site infrastructure requirements and necessary assessments and mitigation measures are set out in Appendix 3.

Amended Concept Plan

2.4

INFRASTRUCTURE REQUIREMENTS

Policy IO 1: SUPPORTING INFRASTRUCTURE –

Development must be supported by appropriate infrastructure, facilities and other requirements considered necessary as part of the proposal. Proposals will be required to satisfactorily demonstrate that:

i. existing provision is safeguarded and capacity is sufficient to support the proposed development; or

ii. where there is a deficiency in provision or capacity directly related to the proposal, arrangements are in place to support the development with new or improved infrastructure, facilities or other measures. Where necessary, Planning Obligations will be sought to ensure that the effects of developments are fully addressed in order to make the development acceptable, which will include addressing any identified deficiencies in provision or capacity directly related to the proposal.

A range of infrastructure may be required, having regard to the nature, scale, location and financial viability of the proposed development.

The delivery of new or improved infrastructure, or other appropriate measures, must be undertaken in a timely and coordinated manner to meet the needs of existing and planned communities prior to, or from the commencement of, the relevant phases of development.

I n instances where there is dispute regarding matters relating to the financial viability of delivering the requirements, the applicant will be required to meet the Council’s costs of securing an independent financial viability appraisal/assessment.

2.4.1

The provision of new infrastructure, as well as the safeguarding, improvement and efficient use of existing infrastructure is central to ensuring that all new development proposed within the Plan period contributes to achieving the Plan’s vision of creating sustainable communities

2.4.2

The above Strategic Policy seeks to ensure that all new developments, irrespective of their size, location, or land use, make efficient use of existing infrastructure and where relevant make appropriate provision for, or contribute to, new infrastructure. 

2.4.3

Specific infrastructure requirements will vary in different locations and be dependent upon the scale and nature of proposed development. Infrastructure may be required to facilitate development or can be required to make a development acceptable and sustainable. The aspects listed below are not exhaustive but are intended to give a broad indication of the potential scope of measures which may be required. The measures are set out in two categories to provide examples of the types of infrastructure which may Swansea Local Development Plan be either “essential” or “required” for a development. The following are examples that are likely to be considered as ‘essential measures’, which would make the development acceptable in planning terms, or measures without which the development would not come forward:

The following are examples of measures that could be required to make the development acceptable:

2.4.4

Area Wide policies relating to each type of infrastructure requirement set out the criteria against which detailed needs and requirements will be assessed. The principles set out in Policy PM 2 Placemaking, will guide the prioritisation and phasing of requirements for each site. 

2.4.5

With regard to the provision of sewerage infrastructure, the Plan seeks to ensure the protection of water quality and all development proposals must comply with the requirements of Policy P 4 Water Pollution and the Protection of Water Resources.

2.4.6

With regard to Strategic Development Areas, site Swansea Local Development Plan specific SDA Policies A-L provide details on the delivery and phasing of the key infrastructure and masterplanning requirements relating to these areas. The SDAs are of a significant scale and are likely to generate their own infrastructure needs which should be met as part of the comprehensive masterplanning process. 

2.4.7

Infrastructure may also be necessary to address the impacts of development at windfall sites and allocated sites under Policies H 1 and H 5. Developers may be required to make contributions to improving the existing provision or, in some cases, providing new infrastructure. 

2.4.8

Further detail of infrastructure requirements and site informatives pertaining to allocated sites is set out in Appendix 3, and detail of requirements relating to on and off-site highway improvements is set out at Appendix 5. The Council also maintains an Infrastructure Delivery Plan, which is a live document that will be updated throughout the lifetime of the plan. It provides detailed information in the phasing, delivery and estimated costs of the necessary infrastructure requirements identified in the Plan to support development on allocated sites. 

2.4.9

Contributions to infrastructure will be secured through Planning Obligations in accordance with the legislative and policy framework provided Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) Regulations 2010 (as amended) and Welsh Office Circular 13/97 'Planning Obligations' (or subsequent versions). Further detail of how the levels of contribution for each type of infrastructure will be calculated and requirements negotiated is set out in the Planning Obligations SPG . 

 

2.4.10

Ensuring that development is viable and developable is an essential part of delivering sustainable development. The Council expects that the costs relating to any measures required to make the development viable and sustainable will be taken into account at an early stage of the development process (including land acquisition) in order that realistic values and costs are achieved as part of the development appraisal. Where a developer seeks to question the viability of a scheme to be delivered in accordance with the Policy requirements, the Council will request an independent development appraisal, which may involve a full assessment if no viability appraisal has been undertaken, and will expect the costs of such an appraisal to be met by the developer. 

2.4.11

In the case of SDAs, it is acknowledged that the effect on viability of the specific Policy requirements will require a specialist appraisal.

2.4.12

A CIL for Swansea is currently being considered. The balance between site masterplanning, planning obligations and CIL to deliver infrastructure will be informed by site viability, dialogue with developers and the Swansea Local Development Plan availability of other funding sources.

Policy IO 2: EMPLOYMENT AND TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES –

Developers are encouraged to work with the Council to maximise added benefits from the development in relation to the creation of training and job opportunities in line with the Council’s Beyond Bricks and Mortar Policy 

2.4.13

The level of growth proposed over the Plan period, together with the delivery of the infrastructure to support it, has the potential to support hundreds of new jobs, training and work experience, thus facilitating a wider distribution of economic benefit and supporting sustainable communities.

2.4.14

Beyond Bricks and Mortar (BB&M) is the Council’s Community Benefit Policy which aims to ensure that advantage is taken of the opportunities arising from new developments and bring added benefits to people, businesses and communities throughout the County. The main focus of the project is to bring economically inactive people back into the labour market and develops employment progression routes to enable these people to move on to higher skilled, higher paid jobs. As part of the construction phase of new developments BB&M would seek to include community benefit clauses to implement targeted recruitment and a training approach thereby increasing job and training opportunities for unemployed and disadvantaged residents.  

2.4.15

The BB&M project therefore presents a significant opportunity to address a number of the Plan’s key issues and objectives relating to social cohesion and health and well-being. The Policy seeks to ensure that the Council’s BB&M team are able to engage with Developers and encourage them to maximize the opportunities arising from developments that take place over the Plan period, whilst offering developers an opportunity to demonstrate how a proposal contributes to local social and economic well-being, and gain increased community support.

2.5

HOUSING

Policy H 1: NON -STRATEGIC HOUSING SITES –

Land is allocated for the delivery of new homes at the following Non -Strategic Sites:

Site ref. SHPZ  Site Location Capacity
H1.1  (Click to view Site) Central  Former Vetch Field, Glamorgan Street, Swansea 40
H1.2 (Click to view Site) Central  Llwyn y Bryn Campus, Walter Road, Swansea 200
H1.3 (Click to view Site) Central  Townhill Campus, Townhill Road, Townhill  150
H1.4 (Click to view Site) East  Land between Bog Road and Cefn Hengoed Road, Llansamlet 70
H1.5 (Click to view Site) East Land at Upper Bank, Nantong Way, Landore  131
H1.6 (Click to view Site) East  Land at Jersey Road opposite numbers 16 -38, Pentrechwyth  20
H1.7 (Click to view Site) East  Land at rear of 17 -93 Carmel Road, Winch Wen  65
H1.8 (Click to view Site) East  Land at Ty Draw Road and Llanerch Road, Bonymaen  55
H1.9 (Click to view Site) East  Land at Graigola Road, Glais  25
H1.10 (Click to view Site) East  Land at Tanycoed Road, Clydach  20
H1.11 (Click to view Site) East  Land at Ramsey Road (phase 9), Clydach  60
H1.12 (Click to view Site) East  Talycoppa Farm, Llansamlet  150
H1.13 (Click to view Site) East  Land at Midland Place, Llansamlet  30
H1.14 (Click to view Site) East  Heol Ddu Farm, Llansamlet 10  10
H1.15 (Click to view Site) East  East Gwernllwynchwyth House, Llansamlet 50  50
H1.16 (Click to view Site) East  Land at Frederick Place, Llansamlet   20
H1.17 (Click to view Site) East  Former Four Seasons Club, Trallwn  30

H1.18 (Click to view Site)

East  Land at David Williams Terrace, Port Tennant  15

H1.19 (Click to view Site)

Greater North West Land east of Pontarddulais Road, Gorseinon  90
H1.20 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land at Parc Melin Mynach and Heol Eifion, Gorseinon  25
H1.21 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Former Cefn Gorwydd Colliery, Gorwydd Road, Gowerton 90
H1.22 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land at West Street, Gorseinon  20
H1.23 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land at Carmel Road and Bryntirion Road, Pontlliw 100
H1.24 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land at the Poplars, Pontlliw  15
H1.25 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Beili Glas, Glebe Road, Loughor  60
H1.26 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land at Former Penllergaer Civic Offices, Penllergaer 80
H1.27 (Click to view Site)  Greater Swansea Local Development Plan North West Land north of Llewellyn Road, Penllergaer  50
H1.28 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land at Bolgoed Road, Pontarddulais 50
H1.29 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land east of Carreg Teilo, Pontarddulais 30
H1.30 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land at Tyrisha Farm, Grovesend  45
H1.31 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land at Brynafon Road and Gower View Road, Penyrheol  225
H1.32 (Click to view Site) Greater North West Land south of Glebe Road, Loughor  130
H1.33 (Click to view Site) North  Former Walkers Factory, Pontarddulais Road, Cadle  100

H1.34 (Click to view Site)

North  Land adjacent to 114 Brithwen Road, Waunarlwydd 15
H1.35 (Click to view Site) North  Land adjacent to Cockett Pond, Cockett 50
H1.36 (Click to view Site) North  Land off Penrhos Place, Gendros 60
H1.37 (Click to view Site) North  Former Manselton Primary School, Manor Road, Manselton 30
H1.38 (Click to view Site) North  Land at Mynydd Garnllwyd Road, Morriston 95
H1.39 (Click to view Site) North  Land at rear of Glyncollen Primary School, Morriston  35
H1.40 (Click to view Site) North  Land at Brayley Road, Morriston 15
H1.41 (Click to view Site) North  Land at Cadle, Fforestfach  20
H1.42 (Click to view Site) North  Land between Eppynt Road and Bettws Road, Penlan  10
    Total dwellings  2,611

Click to view ALL sites

2.5.1

Non-strategic housing sites are allocated within, and on the edge of, established settlements for the provision of 10 or more units. The selection of sites followed a detailed appraisal process that required the proposal to conform with the Plan strategy and sustainable development objectives. The appraisal process included consideration of the existing social and physical capacity within each area, as well as the presence of environmental constraints and the extent to which development can provide, or compensate for, necessary additional social or physical infrastructure. The proposed site capacities highlighted in the schedule are indicative, and in some cases based on development frameworks/briefs put forward by prospective developers. They represent a figure considered reasonable by the Council based on an assessment of densities appropriate for the site taking into account issues such as design, highways safety, and constraints. Appendix 3 of the Plan provides further detail of key infrastructure requirements identified for each allocated site, together with site informatives to highlight where further assessments will be required to establish the impact of development in relation to identified issues, constraints and designations. Where impacts of development have already been established the Appendix sets out the required mitigation measures or measures to retain/enhance identified natural or built heritage assets. The Plan is supported by an Infrastructure Delivery Plan which provides further details of the phasing, funding and delivery of infrastructure required for each allocated site. The appendix is intended to make developers and site promoters aware of some of the key issues that proposals will need to address. Proposals will be expected to consider these principles, and integrate any development requirements that are highlighted, in the context of the particular circumstances that apply at the time of any future planning application, including financial viability. 

2.5.2

The delivery of new housing over the Plan period will be closely monitored through the Monitoring Framework and the status of the sites will be assessed against the anticipated phasing.

2.5.3

The sites allocated for development include those within, or that will sustainably extend, the settlement boundary. They are focussed on a limited number of established communities where it has been assessed that additional housing can come forward without a need to deliver significant Swansea Local Development Plan additional facilities and infrastructure within the site. 

2.5.4

A small number of sites are allocated at edge of settlement locations, where only limited scale development is considered appropriate that will round off the settlement in an appropriate manner. Sites allocated in rural/semi-rural areas are strictly limited to appropriate village and urban fringe locations where the allocation provides an opportunity to enhance the character of the area. 

2.5.5

Non-strategic site allocations will work alongside the allocated SDAs to provide a flexible range and choice of land to meet future housing requirements over the Plan period.

Policy H 2 – AFFORDABLE HOUSING STRATEGY

Provision will be made to deliver a minimum 3,310 affordable homes over the Plan period through the following measures:
  1. Setting targets for on-site provision of affordable housing to be delivered as part of residential proposals where appropriate and viable;
  2. Allocating Local Needs Housing Exception Sites, which will deliver local needs affordable housing as a majority proportion of homes on such sites, supported by a minority element of market housing to meet local need; and
  3. Providing a policy framework for determining 100% affordable housing exception sites.
2.5.6

A key function of the Plan is to cater for the County’s housing requirement through an appropriate supply and mix of housing types, in order to provide an affordable and acceptable standard of housing for all groups in society in accordance with Welsh Government Policy. 

2.5.7

The location of affordable housing should be related to identified need and be in accordance with the Plan’s Spatial Strategy. Proposals should address locational considerations including safe and convenient accessibility to open space, education, employment and other services. 

2.5.8

Affordable housing is defined by National Planning Policy and Guidance30 as ‘housing where there are secure mechanisms in place to ensure that it is accessible to those who cannot afford market housing, both on first occupation and for subsequent occupiers’. There are two main types of affordable housing defined in National Planning Policy and Guidance:

Social Rented Housing: provided by local authorities and registered social landlords where rent levels have regard to the Welsh Government guideline rents and benchmark Swansea Local Development Plan rents; and

Intermediate Housing: where prices or rents are above those of social rented housing but below market housing prices or rents. This can include equity sharing schemes. Intermediate housing differs from low cost market housing. Low cost market housing is private housing for open market sale or rent and the Local Authority does not control occupation. The Welsh Government does not consider low cost market housing to be affordable housing for the purpose of the land use planning system.

30 Technical Advice Note (TAN) 2: Planning and Affordable Housing (2006) 

2.5.9

The purpose of Policy H2 is to define a realistic target for the total number of affordable homes that the Plan can deliver, and to thereby confirm the extent to which the measures set out in the policy will contribute to the overall identified County-wide affordable housing need. The LHMA identifies an affordable housing requirement of 7,400 dwellings across the County, and indicates an average tenure split of 2,100 intermediate and 5,300 social rented properties. Each SHPZ has a different level of need, including variations in the tenure split. 

2.5.10

The target number of 3,310 affordable homes defined in the policy is derived by applying the percentage targets for each SHPZ set out in Policy H3 to the individual components of housing supply. In the case of SDAs, some of these are found to straddle more than one SHPZ. In such cases the relevant percentage affordable housing provision found to be potentially viable for the site is defined in supporting evidence, and it is the proportions in this evidence that have been applied in order to derive the target number of affordable homes. Table 4 clarifies the components of the target number of affordable housing, which includes the contribution from commitments and completions as well as projections for windfall sites.  

Table 4: Affordable Housing Supply Components 2010-25

Components Number of AH Units

Commitments   

 

Housing built 

690
Extant planning permissions 533
Total commitments  1,223
Allocations 

H 1 sites

351

107

H 5 sites 
S D sites  1,349
Total allocations  1,807
 
Windfall 

Large sites

155

125

280

Small sites
Total Windfall
                 Total supply 3,310
2.5.11

It is evident that the majority of the County wide needwill neee be delivered through mechanisms outside of the measures set out in the policy, such as through the Council’s own ‘More Homes’ social housing programme. Given this, the delivery of both social rented and intermediate tenures on residential sites will represent valuable contributions towards addressing the overall County wide level of need. Residential proposals will need to have regard to the housing need in the LHMA and the latest available evidence that applies to the local area such as social housing waiting lists, which should be considered within the context of the Council’s key objective to maximise the delivery of affordable housing and ensure the creation of sustainable balanced communities in accordance with the Well-Being of Future Generations Act. 

2.5.12

Providing housing within rural and semi-rural areas presents particular challenges, which the Plan must seek to address if it is to be successful in creating sustainable and balanced communities. Policy H 2 provides a framework to responds to the evidence in the LHMA in regard to such areas, recognising that the level of affordable housing need in the Gower and Gower Fringe SHPZs is higher than the planned housing delivery for these areas. The LHMA identifies a need to provide 200 affordable homes within the Gower AONB SHPZ and 300 affordable homes within Gower Fringe SHPZ over the Plan period. The LHMA also identifies that demand for rural homes in Gower SHPZ is high and house prices reflect this. The Gower and Gower Fringe Zones are both relatively prosperous with high levels of owner occupation and have both seen significant price rises in recent times. The natural operation of the market allows households who can afford to move to these areas to do so. However, housing need is a constant issue in these higher value rural communities. High house prices result in out-migration as younger, less affluent households leave to meet their housing requirements elsewhere, giving rise to issues of long term sustainability.

2.5.13

Within these areas there are historic issues of loss of market housing units to holiday home ownership and an ageing population under occupying properties, but with no alternative accommodation available to facilitate downsizing in order to release larger family housing into the local housing market supply.

2.5.14

In order to maximise opportunities to deliver affordable housing in rural and semi-rural areas Policy H2 confirms that, in addition to allowing for exception sites at appropriate locations adjoining settlement boundaries (Policy  refers), this will also be achieved by means of specific allocations (in Policy H5) for Local Needs Housing Exception Sites. Development on such sites which will deliver a majority element of Affordable Housing for Local Needs and a minority element of local need market housing, to address the meet the local housing issues identified in the County’s rural and semirural areas. This includes addressing the range of housing needs for different population groups, and Swansea Local Development Plan having regard to the limitations to the existing housing stock.

Policy H 3: ON-SITE AFFORDABLE HOUSING –

Proposals that include residential development on sites within settlement limits with capacity for 5 or more dwellings should provide affordable housing on site at the following target percentages, subject to consideration of the financial viability of the proposal:

SHPZ Target Percentage
West 35%
Central 20%
Greater North West 15% 
East  and  North
10%
 
Within the boundaries of settlements in the Gower and Gower Fringe Strategic Housing Policy Zones, residential proposals on sites with capacity for 2 or more dwellings should provide on-site Affordable Housing for Local Needs at the target percentage of 50%.
 
On-site affordable housing provision requirements for proposals on allocated ‘Local Needs Housing Exceptions Sites’ will be assessed against Policy H 5. 
 
Affordable Housing will be sought to be delivered through on-site provision, unless there are exceptional circumstances that justify its delivery by means of off-site provision and/or commuted payments.  Such proposals will be considered against Policy H 4.
 
2.5.15

The aim of this Policy is to assist the Council to meet the evidenced housing need by seeking appropriate on-site affordable housing provision from new development. This will help to deliver the affordable housing strategy and make an important contribution to achieving the Plan’s objective of achieving a range and mix of affordable housing.

2.5.16

The Policy sets out the target percentage of the total number of dwellings that will be required to be delivered as affordable housing units on-site. Each percentage balances the evidence from the AHVS of what can viably be achieved against other factors such as the housing need identified by the LHMA, past rates of delivery and the requirement for a flexible policy that respects the variation between individual sites in respect of matters such as site constraints or potential requirements for financial contributions. The targets also respond to locally specific issues such as the aspirations to regenerate the Swansea Central Area through the delivery of residential development in association with other mixed uses. Appendix 6B provides further information on the relationship between sub-markets identified in the AHVS and the Strategic Housing Policy Zones referred to the in the Policy.

2.5.17

The Policy applies to all proposed housing Swansea Local Development Plan developments with a capacity to deliver a net gain of 5 or more dwellings, or 2 or more dwellings in the Gower and Gower Fringe Areas. Where adjacent and related residential proposals result in combined numbers meeting or exceeding the specified thresholds, they will be treated as a single proposal and trigger the relevant target percentage. Proposals for the conversion, demolition or change of use of commercial property will be exempt from the Policy. The thresholds have been formulated having regard to evidence contained in the AHVS and seek to maximise the Plan’s contribution to securing land and units for affordable housing, particularly on non-allocated sites

2.5.18

The requirement for all affordable housing within Gower and Gower Fringe to be for Affordable Housing for Local Needs also responds to evidence in the LHMA which identifies that house prices, levels of owner occupation and house sizes in these areas are well above averages for the County. Many of those moving into the area are able to afford the significantly higher prices. The Policy therefore seeks to ensure that all new housing meets the pressing need to provide affordable housing which enables local households to remain in the area.

2.5.19

The mix of dwelling sizes, types and tenures required to be provided on each site will vary in order to reflect the identified level of housing need that applies at the time of application, which will also need to be considered within the context of financial viability. The consideration of need should have regard to the latest LHMA, which should be used as a starting point for evidence of affordable housing need at a County wide level, alongside relevant local information such as the latest Council and Registered Social Landlord (RSL) waiting lists and any recently delivered affordable housing units within the area. Applicants should contact the Council’s Housing Enabling team who will provide the most up to date, locally specific evidence of need that applies. The eligibility criteria for Local Needs Affordable Housing are set out in Appendix 6. 

2.5.20

In the first instance, the full percentage of affordable housing would be sought on-site. The circumstances in which off-site provision is appropriate are set out in Policy H 4 Off-site  Affordable Housing.

2.5.21

Understanding the financial viability of a proposal is a critical component in determining the level of affordable housing appropriate for a site. The evidence underpinning the policy confirms that affordable housing at the target percentages is in principle financially viable having regard to certain assumptions. This evidence includes High Level Testing utilising a financial viability model that considers a range of housing scenarios with the following key assumptions: an allowance for 20% profit margin for the developer; a tenure split of 80% intermediate rented homes (valued at 70% of ACG) and 20% social rented homes (valued at 42% of ACG); and an allowance of £5,000 per dwelling for infrastructure measures through S106 agree. An exception to these broad assumptions in the High Level Testing is in the North SHPZ, where the evidence indicates that, if all other assumptions are unchanged, the affordable housing targets are only viable if the S106 figure is £1,285 per dwelling or less. This reflects the reduced ‘headroom’ available in the North Zone for additional developer costs over and above affordable housing provision. The Council will take a pragmatic and flexible approach to the requirement for affordable homes for the North Zone in particular, and it is recognised that a negotiated lesser provision will be appropriate for schemes where there are S106 costs for the developer that would otherwise threaten the viability of a scheme. 

2.5.22

In certain developments, or pocket sites, where there are fewer constraints or requirements, such as a lack of S106 obligations, a higher percentage than that stated in the Policy may be sought in exceptional circumstances. Conversely, where the Council is satisfied that financial viability at the target percentages cannot be achieved and/or S106 agreement costs are particularly high, the affordable housing percentage agreed for a proposal may be lower than the target percentages stated in the Policy. In such circumstances the Council will work collaboratively with developers to agree an appropriate proportion of on-site affordable housing provision for individual schemes. 

2.5.23

The LPA will take a fair and pragmatic approach to the consideration of the specific development variables that apply to each case, in order to ensure that the affordable housing provision that is sought will not make a scheme unviable. In determining the level of affordable housing appropriate for a site, all relevant development variables will need to be considered as part of any assessment, including:

2.5.24

Any required negotiations between the Council and developer should be undertaken in an open and transparent manner. Full disclosure of the viability evidence relating to the site will be required, and if an agreement cannot be reached, an independent assessment will be commissioned by the Council in a timely manner, which must be paid for by the developer. The assessment should include details and costs of the necessary infrastructure to be delivered, either wholly or in part, to support the delivery of sustainable neighbourhoods. Further Swansea Local Development Plan detail on the negotiation and planning obligation process is set out in the Planning Obligations SPG62 .

62 http://www.designcouncil.org.uk/resources/guide/building-life-12-%20third-edition

2.5.25

Where affordable housing is provided it should be integrated into the overall development and should not be obviously segregated through location, layout or design. Applicants are required to demonstrate how proposals contribute towards the objective of creating sustainable balanced communities in accordance with Policy PS 2 Placemaking and Place Management, and Policy SD 2 Masterplanning Principles.

2.5.26

It is recognised that during the lifetime of the Plan there will be some exceptional circumstances, such as unusual characteristics of a site or unique circumstances of the developer, which will require the Council to consider an alternative to the obligation to provide affordable housing on-site. In such circumstances the Council will consider other mechanisms for the developer to still meet the requirement to ensure the delivery of affordable homes. Proposals that seek to justify the omission of on-site affordable housing provision due to exceptional circumstances, and which propose instead to meet the affordable housing obligation through commuted payments and/or off-site provision, will be assessed against Policy H 4.

Policy H 4: OFF-SITE AFFORDABLE HOUSING –

In exceptional circumstances, the provision of affordable housing off-site may be permitted where:

    i.  Robust financial evidence is provided to satisfactorily demonstrate that it is not viable for the target percentage for affordable housing provision to be delivered on site; and

   ii.  The overall number of affordable homes that will be delivered by the development will be the same number, or greater, than would otherwise have been delivered on site if the target percentage had been achieved; and

 iii.   A suitable and available alternative site is identified within the same ward or SHPZ as the development site; and

 iv.   The housing provided both on and off-site will create sustainable and balanced communities; and

  v.   Funding for the provision of the off-site affordable dwellings can be demonstrated; and

Either the off-site affordable dwellings are delivered first or a suitable financialcontribution is paid to the Council to cover the build costs of the off-site contribution, before the commencement of development of the on-site dwellings.

2.5.27

Policy H 3 is clear that where affordable housing is required, the Council will expect it to be provided on the development site. The provision of the affordable housing off-site, either through an alternative scheme delivered by the developer or an appropriate commuted payment to the Council, will only be considered in exceptional circumstances as defined by the Policy criteria.

2.5.28

Off-site provision may be considered where, for example, a registered social landlord cannot be found to take the units from a developer, or the location of the site is less sustainable for the affordable housing development than a proposed alternative, suitable off-site location. For example this may arise in the case of a rural brownfield redevelopment opportunity, which meets sustainability requirements in terms of securing a future viable use of land for a residential development, but may not offer a sustainable location for affordable housing in terms of accessibility to public transport and day to day services and facilities. This preferred method of delivering achieving affordable housing i.e. for developers to build affordable units (on-site) for transfer to a Registered Social Landlord/the Council is in line with National Planning Policy and Guidance65 . This approach seeks to ensure that the affordable housing secured contributes to the development of socially mixed, sustainable communities.  

65 65 TAN2 Affordable Housing: Para 5.4 “The strong presumption is that affordable housing will be provided on the application site so that it contributes to the development of socially mixed communities.” 

2.5.29

Off-site provision will therefore only be permitted where it can be demonstrated to deliver a sustainable mix and balance of tenures within the community. The Policy seeks to ensure that there is robust financial evidence to support the reduction in on-site provision. All parties must ensure that any required negotiations between the Council and developer is undertaken in an open and transparent manner. Full disclosure of the viability evidence relating to the site will be required. Further detail on the negotiation and planning obligation process is set out in the Planning Obligations SPG. 

2.5.30

The search for suitable alternative sites for off-site provision must first consider opportunities within the same ward or SHPZ as the original development site. Where it is demonstrated that a site cannot be found in the same ward or SHPZ, a cascade will be applied and the area of search will widen to the nearest adjoining ward. This will address the issue of limited land supply in areas where the need is greatest by ensuring that the affordable housing provided is as close as possible to the original development site. The search process for off-site provision could include drawing upon a register of Council-owned land in order to support the delivery of the Council’s More Homes Programme. Wherea Council owned site is identified as an available Swansea Local Development Plan and suitable alternative, the Council will explore opportunities for the original development site to support the delivery of affordable housing on these sites.

2.5.31

The Council must be satisfied that there is a suitable and available site to accommodate the affordable housing. The site should be identified by the applicant during the pre-application discussion and either:

1) Already have planning permission for housing,

or

2) Be acceptable for housing in principle (subject to all other relevant plan policies). In this case, the site will need to be subject to a concurrent planning application and the two applications will be tied together by means of a legal agreement to ensure delivery of the required level of affordable housing provision.

2.5.32

Where off-site provision and/or a commuted payment is agreed, the Council will require that the percentage of affordable housing to be delivered by the proposal will be, as a minimum, equal to the target percentage specified in Policy H 3. This will ensure that the level of affordable housing ultimately provided is no less than that which otherwise would have been required on-site. Commuted sum payments are likely to arise where the amount of affordable housing required contains a fraction of a unit.

Policy H 5: LOCAL NEEDS HOUSING EXCEPTION SITES –

Sites are allocated at the following locations for, local needs housing to meet an identified social and/or economic need:

H 5. 1 Land at Monksland Road, Scurlage

H 5. 2 Land to the east of Gowerton Road, Three Crosses

H 5. 3 Land adjoining Tirmynydd Road, Three Crosses

H 5. 4 Land adjoining Pennard Drive, Pennard

H 5. 5 Land at Summerland Lane, Newton

H 5. 6 Land at Higher Lane, Langland

Development proposals for the six allocated Exception Sites must provide

• A minimum of 51% (the majority proportion) Affordable Housing for Local Needs; and

• A maximum of 49% (the minority proportion) enabling Local Needs Market Housing that meets an identified housing need within the locality by providing an appropriate range of dwelling sizes, types and design specifications having regard to evidence of financial viability,

The occupancy of the Local Needs Market Housing will be restricted to “persons with a local connection” to be used as “their only or principal home” and which will be formally tied to planning consent by means of legal agreements and/or Swansea Local Development Plan conditions.

Proposals that do not provide an appropriate number and range of dwellings to meet the identified social and/or economic needs of “persons with a local connection” within the locality will not be permitted. 

Click to view Site H5.1

Click to view Site H5.2

Click to view Site H5.3

Click to view Site H5.4

Click to view Site H5.5

Click to view Site H5.6

2.5.33

National Planning Policy and Guidance allows for the identification of local needs housing exception sites, which are distinct from standard market housing allocations, to bring forward both affordable and market housing for local needs. In this context Policy H 5 allocates six sites to deliver both Local Needs Market Housing and Affordable Housing for Local Needs, specifically in order to meet the identified need in the Gower, Gower Fringe and West Strategic Housing Policy Zones. 

2.5.34

The evidence of need for affordable housing in these locations is clear and a reliance entirely on 100% affordable housing exception schemes is not a sufficient approach to meaningfully address this need. Furthermore, the sites identified in the Policy are, for the most part, large in relation to the rural settlements/settings in which they are located. In such instances, it would not be in accordance with the objective of creating cohesive, sustainable communities to allocate the entire site for affordable housing. The Policy therefore provides a pragmatic and balanced approach, which addresses the identified local needs for new homes, and ensures that the opportunities to deliver affordable housing are maximised through sustainable forms of development in accordance with the affordable housing strategy set out in Policy H 2.

2.5.35

The Policy requires that the majority of the site (i.e. at least 51% of the units) must provide affordable housing, as defined within National Planning Policy and Guidance and must be occupied by people who meet the Council’s local need criteria, as set out at Appendix 6..

2.5.36

The remainder of the site however may provide Local Needs Market Housing to meet identified local social and economic need. This element of the Policy seeks to address identified issues and deficiencies in the local housing market that affect the ability of specific local groups to meet their accommodation needs within the local area. These groups are defined as “persons with a local connection” and include first time buyers, local persons creating new households, older people, carers and those requiring care. Appendix 6A provides full details of the definition of “persons with a location connection”. 

2.5.37

For the purposes of this policy, the local area is referred to as “the locality”. The area included within the locality is informed by the evidence of social and economic need arising in a specific set of electoral wards, which includes the Council’s administrative wards of: Bishopston, Fairwood, Gower, Mayals, Newton, Oystermouth, Pennard, Penclawdd and West Cross. The geographical area of the locality is illustrated in Appendix 6A, which also sets out the eligibility criteria for Swansea Local Development Plan assessing whether a prospective occupier would satisfy the test of local need. All wards within the locality fall within the Gower, Gower Fringe and West SHPZs. Within these wards evidence shows that the local housing market experiences a range of particular pressures that limit the options available for local households to access private housing and can lead to households moving outside of the locality. These pressures include:

• High levels of second home ownership

• A dominance of larger properties in the existing housing stock;

• A lack of smaller one or two bedroom properties;

• High levels of migrant households from outside of the county that increases levels of competition for existing stock.

The pressures are further compounded by the evidence of the demographic profile of these wards within the locality, which shows that there are significant levels of older persons in larger properties, and lower levels of younger people and young families in these areas. 

2.5.39

All Local Needs Market Housing provided on the allocated sites is therefore required to provide an appropriate range of dwelling sizes, types and design specifications to meet the social and economic needs identified within the Locality. This requirement will ensure that the allocated sites contribute to the diversification of existing housing stock and increase the range of housing options within the locality, thereby increasing the number of households who are able to stay within the locality to meet their housing needs. This can be achieved by providing:

• A Range of Types of Homes: Provision of a range of house types, including for example flats and bungalows, will contribute to diversification of local stock and provide opportunities for certain population cohorts such as older persons, those requiring care and newly forming households to access appropriate housing within the Locality.

• A Range of Design Specifications: Provision of stock that meets design standards such as Lifetime Homes Standards, the provision of lifts within flats, level access to dwellings, and other measures, which would serve to increase opportunities for older households or those requiring care, to continue to live independently within the local area.

• A Range of Sizes: Addressing the lack of smaller properties in wards within the Locality will increase opportunities for newly forming households, thus reducing the number of young people and young families moving out of the area to find housing or remaining in concealed households not able to form independent households. Ensuring the diversification of sizes of stock in the local housing market will also aid older people to move out of existing family housing into more suitable properties and thus facilitate churn in Swansea Local Development Plan the local housing market.

2.5.40

In order to ensure that Local Needs Market Housing provided on the allocated sites meet the objectives of the Policy, the occupation of dwellings provided will be controlled through the use of local occupancy restrictions. Such restrictions will require that initial and subsequent occupants of the properties fall within the definition of “persons with a local connection”. An exception to this requirement may be permitted if a property has been marketed, for at least 16 weeks at market value price and at the end of the 16 week period no appropriate offers of purchase have been made from a person who meets the local needs criteria. Appendix 6B provides further details of how the marketing period will be implemented. Restrictions will also be imposed to ensure as " only or principal homes". Appendix 6B provides further details of the definitions and mechanisms mecessary to enforce the implementation of the policy.

2.5.41

In accordance with Policy IO 1, legal agreements and/or planning conditions will be used to ensure that the agreed percentage of Affordable Housing for Local Needs and Local Needs Market Housing is delivered, that an appropriate range of type, sizes and design specifications of dwellings is provided to meets the objectives of the Policy, and that local needs housing occupancy restrictions are applied. 

2.5.42

Provision of an appropriate range of both affordable housing for local needs and local needs market dwelling sizes, tenure types and design specifications on the sites allocated in Policy H 5 is key to achieving the objectives of the Policy. The mix of dwellings must be negotiated with both the Council’s Planning and Housing departments, having regard to meeting the social and economic needs within the Locality identified in the most up to date needs evidence at the time of the application. 

2.5.43

The Policy acknowledges that some degree of flexibility will be required with regard to ensuring the financial viability of a proposal is not fundamentally undermined, for example through a particular requirement for house types, design or sizes. The Council will take a fair and pragmatic approach to the consideration of financial viability implications during discussions and negotiations with developers on the range of homes to be provided, and in some instances this may necessitate some house types/sizes being included within a scheme that do not specifically address a need or housing shortage in the Locality but are required to make the scheme viable. In such instances full disclosure of the viability evidence relating to the site will be required, and if an agreement cannot be reached, an independent assessment will be commissioned by the Council to reach a resolution, which must be paid for by the developer. However the Policy is clear that permission will not be granted if the specified minimum proportion of Affordable Housing for Local Need is not provided, or if the proposed Local Needs Market Housing do not overall provide an appropriate range of dwellings to meet the identified social and/or economic need in the Locality. 

2.5.44

Appendix 3 of the Plan provides further details of site specific development requirements relating to each of the allocated sites, including measures necessary to address landscaping impact and where relevant impact on the Gower AONB.

Policy H 6: 100% AFFORDABLE HOUSING EXCEPTION SITES –

Residential proposals on sites within or adjoining existing settlements where 100% of the proposed dwellings are for Affordable Housing for Local Needs will only be permitted where:

i. The site represents a logical extension to the existing settlement and is of a scale appropriate to and in keeping with the character of the settlement;

ii. The site is in a sustainable location having reasonable access to at least a basic range of services;

iii. It is of a size, scale and design compatible with affordable dwelling standards and available to low or moderate income groups;

iv. There are binding agreements in place to ensure that the initial affordability benefits will be retained in perpetuity for all successive occupiers who meet the Council’s occupancy criteria;

v. It is demonstrated that there are no satisfactory alternative arrangements to meet the need within the locality; and

vi. There is no loss of land of important recreational, amenity or natural heritage value.

Market housing will not be permitted on 100% affordable housing rural exception sites. The proposed affordable housing should meet the needs of local people in perpetuity, which will be tied to the planning consent by means of a legal agreement. 

2.5.45

National Planning Policy and Guidance allows for the identification of affordable housing exception sites to deliver Affordable Housing for Local Needs. These are sites where, as an exception to the restrictions set out in national policy on development in the countryside, residential development for affordable housing for Local Needs may be permitted.

2.5.46

All residential proposals on non-allocated sites must be located within or adjoining existing settlements, and must provide affordable housing for local needs in perpetuity in accordance with the Swansea Local Development Plan Council’s own occupancy criteria (as set out at Appendix 6). In accordance with Policy IO 1, legal agreements and/or conditions will be used to ensure that the agreed percentage of affordable housing for local needs and local needs housing is delivered and that the type and mix and local occupancy restrictions meets the objectives of the Policy. Applicants should consult with the Council’s Planning and Housing Teams who will provide guidance on the required mix of types and tenures having regard to the most up to date evidence of local need.

2.5.47

The Policy sets out criteria to ensure that where affordable housing exception sites are identified that they are of an appropriate nature and in a location which is in accordance with the Plan’s strategy of creating sustainable communities. Furthermore, proposals must have regard to their ecological, landscape, cultural and amenity impact in accordance with Policies HC 1, ER 3, ER 4, ER 5, ER 7, ER 8, ER 11, RP 2 and RP 3.

2.5.48

Outside of settlement boundaries, within the area defined as countryside, proposals will be determined against Policy CV 2 Development in the Countryside, which restricts development as set out in TAN 6 Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities (2010) .

Policy H 7: GYPSY AND TRAVELLER ACCOMMODATION –

Proposals for new Gypsy and Traveller sites, and extensions to existing authorised sites, will be permitted within settlement boundaries where:

i. Necessary physical, transport and social infrastructure is accessible or will be readily provided

ii. If the site is developed by a public body, it is designed in accordance with appropriate Welsh Government Design Guidance;

iii. The scale of the proposal is appropriate with regard to the site’s surroundings and setting;

iv. The development will have significant adverse impacts on people’s amenity; and

v. In the case of a transit or touring site, it has good access to the primary highway network. Proposals for a Gypsy and Traveller site, or the expansion of an existing authorised site, on land outside or immediately adjacent to the settlement boundary will be permitted where all of the above criteria are satisfactorily met and:

a. The applicant has demonstrated that there are no suitable pitches available within existing authorised sites or land available within existing settlement limits;

and

b.The site represents a logical extension to the settlement boundary and there would be no loss of important recreational, amenity or natural heritage value.

2.5.49

The Policy provides a framework for the Swansea Local Development Plan assessment of proposals for Gypsy and Traveller sites (including Travelling Show People) as defined by Section 108, Housing (Wales) Act 2014. 

2.5.50

Sites should be designed in accordance with advice in Welsh Government Circular 005/2018: Planning for Gypsy, Traveller and Showpeople Sites which will be a material considerations as appropriate in the determination of any planning applications. Sites being developed by a public body, such as a Local Authority, should be designed in accordance with the Welsh Government Guidance: Designing Gypsy and Traveller Sites.

2.5.51

The need for Gypsy and Traveller pitches over the Plan period is identified in the Council’s Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment (2015, GTAA), and is summarised in Table 5 below.  

Table 5: Gypsy and Traveller Site Needs, Provision and Timescales

Type of Identified Need Pitches Needed Commentary
2016-2021

2021-2025 

Total – LDP Period
Residential: 7 0 7 The need up to 2021 will be met by the provision of 7 pitches on land to the west of Pant y Blawd Road in accordance with relevant planning permission.
Residential: New Household Growth at the Existing Ty Gwyn Site
6
(accommodated by means of ‘churn’ on existing pitches)
 
0
12 
(-6 having regard to churn on existing pitches)
 
The need up to 2021 will be met through pitch turnover identified in the GTAA on the Ty Gwyn site.  The need in 2021-25 will be met by extending the Ty Gwyn site in accordance with relevant planning permission. It should be noted that a new GTAA is expected to be undertaken in 2020 and the re-assessed need identified by this study for the latter part of the Plan period 2021-25 will be monitored.
Travelling Showpeople
16
(11 from existing need within County, plus 5 new households to arrive from outside County)
 
0 16 The existing site at Railway Terrace is lawful and has capacity to accommodate the 16 pitches needed in 2016-21.
Total
23 Pitches for Immediate Need
(comprises 7 residential and 16 Travelling Showpeople)
 
6 Pitches
(Household growth at Ty Gwyn)
 
29 Pitches  

Source: Accommodation Needs sourced from the latest (2015) Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Assessment (GTAA)

2.5.52

The GTAA identified an immediate need for 7 new residential pitches to accommodate Gypsies and Travellers. The site west of Pant y Blawd Road, which benefits from a relevant planning permission, provides for the required pitches to meet this need, for the period 2016-21.

2.5.53

An estimate was made in the GTAA for new household growth associated with the existing authorised residential Gypsy and Traveller site at Ty Gwyn.  The estimate is based on an assumption that the current number of identified households will increase by 3% per annum (the highest growth level set out in the Welsh Government Guidance methodology, which was considered the approach that was most in-line with the aspirations expressed by respondents in the GTAA).  This newly arising need yields a total further requirement for 6 residential Gypsy and Traveller pitches up to 2021 and a further 6 in 2021-25.  The Welsh Government Guidance allows tenancy churn on existing sites to be factored into the supply.  This tenancy churn meets the identified need from household growth for the period up to 2021.  The identified need from household growth for the period 2021-25 will be met by the land which has been granted planning permission for further expansion of the Ty Gwyn site.  It should be noted that a new GTAA is expected to be undertaken in 2020 and the re-assessed need identified by this study for the latter part of the Plan period 2021-25 will be monitored. 

2.5.54

The GTAA also identified a need for accommodation for Travelling Showpeople, traditionally referred to as “Winter Quarters”, which combine the need for residential, storage and maintenance uses. The GTAA identified a current immediate need for 11 Travelling Showpeople pitches. This can be accommodated at the established Traveller Showpeople site at Railway Terrace, Gorseinon. The GTAA has identified a further 5 Travelling Showpeople households residing outside the County who have expressed that they would return to the area if a site became available. The existing site at Railway Terrace benefits from a relevant planning permission for use by Traveller Showpeople, and has sufficient capacity to accommodate the total need identified for the Plan period i.e. 16 pitches in total. There is therefore no requirement for a specific site allocation in the Plan for Travelling Showpeople. 

2.5.55

Having regard to the above, there is therefore no requirement for a specific site allocation in the Plan for Gypsy Travellers.

2.5.56

The GTAA concluded there is not a need for a transit site in the County. 

2.5.57

In accordance with the Housing (Wales) Act 2014, the Council will undertake a new GTAA every five years and so a new GTAA is expected to be published in 2020. The future requirements for, and take-up of, pitches will be closely monitored having regard to the new GTAA, using the monitoring framework and AMR . This will inform any necessary review of pitch numbers to be provided by the Council in the latter part of the Plan period (post 2020).

2.5.58

Proposals will need to demonstrate that they are of an appropriate standard and design to allow residents of the site to have access to basic facilities and live in safe, cohesive and sustainable communities. The development must not have a significant adverse impact on people’s amenity. Where business uses are proposed, the site will be required to be able to accommodate home-based business uses without detracting from the amenity, appearance, character and environment of the area or neighbouring occupiers. This may include the provision of adequate facilities and space for such activities.  

2.5.59

Proposals will be required to demonstrate that through the siting, layout and access of the site, there would be no detriment to pedestrian or highway safety. Furthermore, proposals will need to demonstrate the site is able to provide sufficient standard of physical infrastructure facilities and access to utilities, including an adequate water supply, power, drainage, waste disposal and sewage disposal to ensure the development of the site will not pose risks to human health and wellbeing of residents. The site should also have adequate accessibility, including by walking and cycling, to necessary social infrastructure including education and health.

2.5.60

Consideration will be given to environmental factors including flood risk, ground stability, land contamination and proximity of hazardous installations to ensure the site is appropriate for residential development.

2.5.61

Proposals outside or immediately adjacent to the identified settlement limits will be permitted where all of the policy criteria are satisfactorily met.

Policy H 8: ANCILLARY RESIDENTIAL ACCOMMODATION –

Proposals for ancillary residential accommodation must ensure that the development is:

i. Reliant in part on the main dwelling for facilities;

ii. Strictly limited in terms of size, scale and floor area to be reflective of the needs of the user;

 iii. Located within the existing curtilage of the main dwelling and no separate garden area, vehicle access, or segregated car parking area is proposed;

v. Physically attached and designed as an extension to the main dwelling with a linking internal doorway(s) and no separate external entrance on the principal elevation, or within a suitably converted existing outbuilding inside the curtilage of the main dwelling;

v. Designed to be subordinate to, and respects and enhances the character of, the main dwelling; and

vi. In the same ownership as the main dwelling, with future occupancy tied to the beneficial ownership of the main dwelling by means of a S106 agreement and/or Unilateral Undertaking. 

2.5.62

Ancillary residential accommodation can fulfil an important function, such as enabling a relative to live with their family in the same dwelling but with a degree of independence. Such accommodation must be ancillary in terms of design, size and function to the main dwelling, be within the curtilage of the main dwelling, and not form a self-contained  separate dwelling. Any scheme that fails todemonstrate that it is functionally connected to, or reliant on, the main dwelling will be assessed as a proposal for a new dwelling. The Council will assess proposals carefully to ensure they do not result in the creation of what is effectively a new dwelling at an inappropriate location, especially where proposals are in the countryside

2.5.63

Ancillary residential accommodation should not have the full range of facilities or be designed in such a way that would make it capable of being occupied as an independent dwelling. Proposals should be designed to be strictly reflective of the occupant’s identified essential needs. This might include one en-suite bedroom and a living area with kitchenette, in the case of a single dependent. It should strictly be ancillary living accommodation and be partly reliant on the main dwelling’s facilities with a functional connection to it if the annexe is an extension of the host dwelling (this might include circumstances where the occupants are a dependent of the main dwelling household or an employee at the main dwelling). The annexe should be in the same ownership as the main dwelling. Details should be provided on who will use it, including their relationship and/or dependency with the main dwelling occupants, and ownership details of the annexe. The Council may apply a planning obligation to ensure the development is not sold off separately from the existing main dwelling or used as an independent dwelling. 

2.5.64

The proposal must by virtue of its design, scale, height, form, massing, materials and layout be subordinate to, and respect and enhance the character of the existing main dwelling. It must be designed so that it can be used as an integral part of the main dwelling once the need for the annexe has ceased.

2.5.65

The annexe must be within the main dwelling’s residential curtilage and be part of the same single planning unit sharing amenities including vehicular access, parking, and garden. There should be no boundary demarcation or sub division of garden or parking areas. The applicant should submit plans showing the development in the context of the whole planning unit. 

2.5.66

Annexes will normally only be permitted in the form of an extension to the main dwelling. In the case of the conversion of existing outbuildings within the main dwelling curtilage that benefit from permitted development rights, it may only be acceptable to convert part of the building to ensure the conversion provides only limited facilities commensurate with an annexe that is partly dependent on the main dwelling. The annexe should not displace an existing use which would require the construction of a further alternative building to enable that use to continue. New build detached annexes will only be considered where it is satisfactorily demonstrated that an extension or conversion is not appropriate or possible, and will not be permitted at locations outside of the defined settlement limits. 

2.5.67

Permitted development rights may apply for some limited development, including small extensions. Applicants should consult with the Council in advance of any works. All schemes should be designed in accordance with the principles of good design contained within the Design Guide for Householder Development SPG.

Policy H 9: HOUSES IN MULTIPLE OCCUPATION –

Proposals for the conversion of a dwelling or nonresidential property to a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) will only be permitted where,

i. within the HMO Management Area, it would not lead to more than 25% of all residential properties within a 50m radius of the proposal being HMOs,

ii. outside of the HMO Management Area, it would not lead to more than 10% of all residential properties within a 50m radius of the proposal being HMOs,

iii. the development would not result in a Class C3 dwelling being ‘sandwiched’ between adjoining HMO properties

iv. the property is suited for use as a HMO, and will provide satisfactory private amenity space, dedicated areas for refuse storage and appropriate room sizes, and 

v. there would be no unacceptable adverse impacts Swansea Local Development Plan caused by noise nuisance and general disturbance

HMO proposals within small streets that do not breach the 50m radius maximum threshold will not be supported if the proposal would create a disproportionate over concentration of HMOs within that street.

HMO proposals that would lead to a breach of the maximum thresholds will only be permitted where there are exceptional circumstances or overriding material considerations that demonstrably outweigh any concerns regarding harmful concentration or intensification.

Click to view Site H 9

2.5.68

It is likely that there will continue to be a need for new Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) over the lifetime of the Plan to meet both an occupier demand and a societal need, including need arising from the effects of welfare reforms and the increase in student numbers associated with Swansea’s expanding universities. It is important however that future HMO provision is managed sustainably in the interests of fostering cohesive communities, including avoiding instances of over-concentration of HMO properties to the detriment of residential amenity and community balance. 

2.5.69

The policy defines specific thresholds, above which further concentrations of HMOs will normally be deemed a harmful concentration. The thresholds have been identified based on an understanding of current HMO concentrations, likely future demand, current HMO supply, and other available evidence including the findings of national research undertaken by the Welsh Government 32.

32 Welsh Governement 2015. Houses in Multiple Occupation Evidence Gathering, Report of Findings.

2.5.70

The policy sets out a two tier approach to defining thresholds beyond which further HMO uses will be considered to have a harmful effect. This approach is reflective of the established uneven concentrations of HMOs across Swansea and the particular demand within certain urban areas that have key facilities. Within the HMO Management Area, as defined on the Proposals Map, there are existing community sustainability and cohesion issues that have resulted from concentrations of HMOs. The Management Area incorporates part, but not all, of Uplands and Castle Wards where there are significant existing concentrations of licenced HMOs. The 25% maximum HMO threshold to be applied is broadly comparable with the average concentration of HMOs across the Management Area, however there are some pockets of much higher concentrations such as parts of Brynmill closest to the Swansea University Singleton Campus. Applying the 25% threshold in the HMO Management Area will therefore serve to significantly restrict opportunities for additional HMOs within existing areas of high concentration, where further intensification of HMOs is not Swansea Local Development Plan favoured. This approach strikes an appropriate balance between recognising the established character of different streets and areas, whilst also supporting sustainable communities. 

2.5.71

The Management Area approach will effectively encourage future HMO provision to be more dispersed to areas outside existing concentrations in a suitably managed way. Outside the defined HMO Management Area, a threshold of 10% of all residential properties being HMOs will be used as the maximum limit. The proportions of HMOs in most of these areas are substantially less than 10% and as such the threshold will allow for an appropriate small level of growth in such accommodation. National research has identified that 10% is a general ‘tipping point’ beyond which the evidence indicates that a concentration of HMOs can begin to have an adverse impact on the character and balance of a community. This tipping point is described as a threshold beyond which a community can ‘tip’ from a balanced position in terms of demographic norms and impacts, towards a demographic that is noticeably more mixed in terms of shared and family households. This is an evidence based approach that provides a robust rationale for applying a 10% threshold for all areas outside the HMO Management Area.

2.5.72

In considering whether a proposal breaches the defined threshold level for that area, the Planning Authority will assess the concentration of HMO  properties within a 50 metre radius of the property that is subject to the HMO planning application. The radius will be measured from the centre-point of the proposed property’s street frontage. All residential properties falling into planning use class C3, C4, and large HMOs (Sui Generis) that are located within this defined radius will be counted as part of the analysis, if the majority of its street facing entrance is contained within the radius. If the HMO property is located within the HMO Management Area but the geographic area of the radius extends into the 10% threshold area, the 25% threshold will be applied – and vice-versa. In some areas, residential property plots may be large or development particularly sparse meaning a 50m radius may capture only a handful of properties. In such cases, the Council will apply the relevant threshold to an area that contains at least 10 properties. Should a 50m radius fail to capture the required number of properties, the Council will select the nearest properties from the same side of the street as the proposed HMO so that at least 10 properties are captured. 

2.5.73

In order to understand the full extent of HMOs within the 50m radius, the LPA will draw upon all available records within the public domain to inform the calculation. In addition, the Council’s public register of licensed HMOs will be used as the basis for the calculation for any proposals in the Uplands and Castle Wards, since these areas are within a designated ‘Additional Licensing Area’ which requires all HMO properties to be officially licenced. In addition, when calculating the proportion of Swansea Local Development Plan HMOs, the LPA will consider representations received as part of the consultation process on planning applications in order to establish the use of properties. The Council is reviewing the need for further Licensing Areas within other parts of the County under the provisions of the Housing Act, which if designated will provide a further register of HMOs to assess concentrations.

2.5.74

Planning permission will be required to change the use of a small HMO to a large HMO, or to intensify the use of a lawful large HMO by increasing the number of occupiers. In such instances however the threshold limit will not be triggered as the HMO has already been established in the street and, therefore, would not be assessed as numerically leading to further concentration of HMOs and the balance and mix of households in the local community. These types of planning application will be assessed on their individual merits on a case by case basis against the criteria in this policy and other policies in the Plan, including impact on the character of the area, residential amenity and parking.

2.5.75

The policy recognises that there are some street patterns and layouts that are characteristic of particular areas of Swansea, including areas of Sandfields and St Thomas, where applying the 50m radius test would not sufficiently protect against harmful concentration of HMOs. In particular this applies to ‘small streets’ where a relatively low number of HMOs concentrated within that street can have a disproportionate adverse impact. For the purpose of this policy, small streets are those that have between 11 and 34 properties inclusive. In such instances the LPA will consider whether a HMO proposal will lead to an over concentration having regard to the number of HMOs on the small street itself, as well as considering compliance with the 50m radius threshold test. A ratio of more than 1 in 8 within a small street will normally be considered a disproportionate over concentration of HMOs.  This includes small streets formed by the sub-division of larger streets from intersecting roads. In the case of these small streets, the LPA will consider whether a HMO proposal will lead to an over concentration having regard to the number of HMOs that would be created on that particular small street, as well as considering compliance with the 50m radius threshold test. A ratio of more than 1 in 8 within a small street will normally be considered a disproportionate over concentration of HMOs.

2.5.76

In the case of streets of 10 or fewer properties, within the HMO Management Area a maximum of 2 HMO properties will be permitted within the street. In the case of streets of 10 or fewer properties outside the HMO Management Area, a maximum of 1 HMO property will be permitted within the street.

2.5.77

Further details on the implementation of the threshold approach, and the exceptional circumstances that may apply, will be set out in SPG on HMO developments. This will provide worked examples of compliance and non-compliance with the policy.

2.5.78

During the lifetime of the Plan it is recognised that there may be specific material considerations and/or exceptional circumstances that apply to a particular proposal, which could demonstrably outweigh the outcome of the 50m radius ‘threshold test’ as tha HMO proposal is appropriate. Given this, whether Swansea Local Development Plan or not a proposal is found to comply or not with the 50m radius threshold test will not in every circumstance be the final determining factor as to whether planning permission for a HMO is approved or refused. In such exceptional circumstances, the applicant must submit supporting evidence and information to sufficiently demonstrate that the specific circumstances justify a departure from the threshold test. An exceptional circumstance may arise in the case of a HMO proposal within a street that has a very high existing HMO concentration, for a property that is shown through evidence to be significantly less attractive for a non-shared use. It is appropriate to apply a degree of flexibility in such circumstances, in order to respect the fact that certain C3 residential properties can be inherently more suited to a HMO use. This is particularly so in the case of certain larger dwellings or properties that have multiple kitchens and bathrooms that will require significant works to be remodelled to provide a family house. In these exceptional instances, it may be more appropriate to take a flexible approach to ensure the sustainable use of these properties rather than have C3 properties standing vacant for long periods. In such instances, HMO proposals must be accompanied by a comprehensive assessment that will need to adequately justify a departure from the threshold test, including:

  1. Evidence that the property has been unsuccessfully marketed for a C3 use at a e overriding factor(s) in deciding whether  reasonable asking price for a period of at least 6 months
  2. Reasons why, and evidence to justify, that the property is unviable for C3 use (e.g. financial viability of any renovations needed; lack of demand for traditional family accommodation in that area)
  3. Any particular characteristics of the property (e.g. scale or layout) which make it suited to HMO use and unsuitable for other uses such as C3.
  4. Any other evidence considered relevant by the applicant to justify why a HMO use is more appropriate than a C3 residential use.
2.5.79

Due to the nature of higher density living in HMOs, in some instances this can lead to noise and general disturbance issues. In order to avoid unacceptable adverse impacts arising from such issues, consideration will be given to the use of noise insulation measures having regard to the design and layout of the properties that would be affected. Whilst this is primarily the preserve of Building Regulations it may be deemed necessary to attach planning conditions which require the installation of sound insulation to properties in certain circumstances, such as soft closing fire doors and/or soundproofing measures. The principles of the Council’s Design Guide for Householder Development will be applied to HMOs to protect residential amenity. Maintaining privacy between HMOs and neighbouring properties will be carefully considered as part of each planning application.  

2.5.80

In line with the City & County of Swansea Parking Standards, lower levels of off-street car parking may be permitted for HMO proposals in the Swansea Central Area, particularly where there is good public transport accessibility and where the use of the private car is to be discouraged. Secure cycle parking should be provided on the basis of 1 stand per 2 bedrooms. There may be circumstances where increased provision in cycle storage could be considered as part of an applicant’s justification for lower car parking provision. However the LPA will consider each case on its own merit. Cycle storage should be provided in a dedicated cycle storage area which is able to accommodate the maximum number of cycles required. Where rear access arrangements allow, cycles should be stored to the rear of properties, rather than in front gardens. The Council’s Parking Standards SPG contains further information on this standard. 

2.5.81

All HMOs will be required to incorporate adequate and effective provision for the storage, recycling and other sustainable management of waste, and where relevant allow for appropriate access arrangements for recycling and refuse collection vehicles and personnel. All refuse and recycling for HMOs should be suitably stored in landlord provided bins pending disposal. These bins should be provided in a dedicated refuse store which is able to accommodate the maximum number of bins required, based on an assessment of refuse emerging. All refuse storage areas should be located to the rear of properties where possible. Proposals for refuse storage to the front of properties that would detract from the local streetscene will not be permitted.

2.5.82

The policy resists proposals to create a new HMO use adjoining a C3 residential property where that property already adjoins a HMO property on its other side, in order to prevent ‘sandwiching’ of a C3 use between HMOs. This approach will only apply where the properties share the same street frontage i.e. it would not apply where the properties are separated by an intersecting road or where properties have a back to back relationship in different streets. The approach aims to prevent the potential for negative amenity impacts upon residents as a result of C3 dwellings being isolated between two HMOs, including the potential for increased levels of disturbance associated with multiple households within a property, and the negative effects of transient households on both sides. The majority of HMOs in the Uplands area are, for example, occupied by students and as such it is often the case that such properties are vacated during summer months. This approach will also serve to prevent clustering of HMOs and avoid over concentrations at a very localised level.

2.5.83

Not all proposals that comply with the 50m radius threshold test will be considered suitable for change of use to a HMO, and applications will be Swansea Local Development Plan considered against all policy criteria. For example the policy requires that properties must be of a sufficient size to permit the creation of individual dwelling units with satisfactory private amenity space and appropriate room sizes. Proposals that would give rise to cramped living conditions for future occupiers will be resisted. All bedrooms and shared living spaces within the property will be required to have windows that provide sufficient light and outlook. In order to provide clarity to developers on what the Authority considers to be appropriate standards, all HMO proposals should accord with the guidance set out in the Council’s adopted HMO Licensing Policy, regardless of whether the property is located within or outside the HMO Management Area. Proposals must not give rise to a Category 1 hazard under Part 1 of the Housing Act 2004 using the Housing Health and Safety Rating System or conflict with the requirements of Part X of the Housing Act. Further details of amenity standards, including minimum room sizes, will be set out in SPG on HMO developments.

Policy H 10: SPECIALIST HOUSING –

Proposals for specialist housing development, and extensions to established specialist housing facilities, will be permitted within existing settlements where:
 
i. There is safe and convenient access to shops, services, community facilities and public transport appropriate to the needs of the intended occupiers;
 
ii. It is suitable for the intended occupiers in terms of the quality, design, type and affordability of th e accommodation, as well as the provision of support and care; and
 
iii. It can be demonstrated that the scheme is viable and sustainable and that appropriate consultation has been undertaken with the Council’s Social Services Department.
 
Proposals for specialist housing outside the defined settlement boundaries will only be permitted where it is:
 
a.Ancillary to an existing specialist housing institution;
 
b.Integrated with the existing specialist housing complex; 
 
c.Not disproportionate in scale; and
 
d.Demonstrated that the scheme is viable and sustainable and that appropriate consultation has been undertaken with the Council’s Social Services Department.
 
Where the development falls withi n Use Class C3 (dwelling houses), the development will be expected to contribute to the supply of affordable housing in accordance with Policy H 3. 
 
2.5.84

This Policy relates to housing designed and Swansea Local Development Plan designated for occupation by older people, or people with disabilities, who have specific housing needs. This type of accommodation is collectively termed ‘specialist housing’. 

2.5.85

Specialist housing is intended to enable the occupants to live as independently as possible, but is designed so that support can be provided to them (and potentially to others in the wider community) on-site. The Policy relates to sheltered housing, residential care and nursing homes, and extra-care housing. It does not relate to student accommodation or other types of accommodation within the C2 use class (residential institutions) not specifically for older or disabled people, such as hospitals and boarding schools.

2.5.86

Specialist housing should be provided at locations where there is a demonstrable need for the amount and type of accommodation proposed. It should be provided to enable people moving into such accommodation to remain in their local area and to create and maintain balanced communities. The scheme should be endorsed by the Council’s Social Services Department where care and/or support funding may be required for some or all of the residents either from the outset or in future. Social Services should be consulted on the design of the scheme including the specification of the units and communal areas. This will help ensure there is capacity and funding to provide any care needed. The scheme will need to be affordable for the tenants who will occupy the units. Proposals must be accompanied by details of the future management of the scheme and a viability assessment, particularly if it is intended that the facility will become an asset that is managed by the Council through the Housing Revenue Account (HRA) as a social rented scheme. In such cases the cost of acquiring the scheme from the developer will need to be agreed with the Council in advance to ensure it can be supported within the HRA Business Plan. Evidence will also be required to demonstrate future viability and sustainability of the scheme in terms of the number of units and future income.  

2.5.87

The development must have safe and convenient access to facilities, services, shops and public transport appropriate to the needs of the occupants. Depending on the needs of the occupants and the location, it may also be necessary to provide appropriate facilities and services on site to prevent isolation and loneliness.

Policy H 11: PURPOSE BUILT STUDENT ACCOMMODATION –

Proposals for purpose built student accommodation should be located within the Swansea Central Area, and must in the first instance assess the availability and suitability of potential sites and premises at this location, unless:

i. The proposed site is within a Higher Education Campus and is in accordance with an approved masterplan for the site; and

 ii. In the case of the Swansea University Bay Swansea Local Development Plan Campus, the development would not give rise to an additional number of residential units at the Campus than the number permitted by any extant planning permission; and

iii. The development would give rise to an overall benefit to the vitality and viability of the Swansea Central Area.

2.5.88

Higher Education makes an important contribution to the local economy with in the region of 16,500 full time students 33 living in the area. Many live in former family homes converted to HMOs and as a consequence parts of the County experience significant community cohesion issues resulting from harmful concentrations of such dwellings. It is preferable that student needs are met as far as possible by modern purpose built and managed schemes with the space and facilities more suited to students’ needs in appropriate Swansea Central Area locations where there is good access to services, facilities and public transport to the University buildings. Such development accords with City Centre living aims and would increase footfall, and so contribute towards enhancement of City Centre vitality and viability. It may also lead to a reduction in HMOs and promote the reinstatement of dwellings to family use.

67 Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) Student Record and LLWR (Lifelong Learning Wales Record), published by HESA / Welsh Government, 2015  

2.5.89

The Swansea Central Area boundary is defined in Policy RC 1. The Council wishes to avoid development of student accommodation that is unsustainable (including in terms of access to services, facilities and public transport) or to the detriment of the regeneration aims for the Central Area. Therefore proposals for student accommodation will not be supported outside of the Swansea Central Area unless the exception criteria are met. Although provision of such purpose built student accommodation will be encouraged within the Central Area, careful consideration will be given to the potential impact on the amenity of, or potential for conflicts with, surrounding uses.

2.5.90

There is a development opportunity to expand the Swansea University Bay Campus to the west of the existing Bay Campus site currently located within the boundary of Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council. Development proposals for education facilities to support the continued growth of the University will be supported at this location. Proposals for student accommodation will only be permitted within the expansion area where the total quantum of bedrooms does not exceed the number approved by the outline planning permission for the Bay Campus scheme, consented by Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council. This approach is enshrined within the cross boundary masterplan produced by the Swansea and Neath Port Talbot Swansea Local Development Plan Council s. Any such proposals for student accommodation within the expansion area must be supported by evidence that the quantum of unbuilt student accommodation on the existing Bay Campus has been, or will be, reduced by the corresponding number of units.  

2.5.91

The Council may apply a condition to restrict occupation of the development to students. Where proposals are to convert an existing property (such as above shop development), applicants should also refer to Policy H 9 Houses in Multiple Occupation and Policy PS 2 Placemaking and Place Management. 

2.6

HISTORIC AND CULTURAL ENVIRONMENT

Policy HC 1: HISTORIC AND CULTURAL ENVIRONMENT –

The County’s distinctive historic and cultural environment will be preserved or enhanced by:

i. Requiring high quality design standards in all development proposals to respond positively to local character and distinctiveness;

ii. Identifying and safeguarding heritage assets, sites and their settings;

iii. Supporting heritage and cultural led regeneration schemes;

iv. Safeguarding and promoting use of the Welsh language.

2.6.1

The historic and cultural environment is one of the County’s most important assets and provides a finite, irreplaceable source of information about our past. The evidence of people’s interactions and relationships over generations with place is all around us in the buildings, features and town and settlement patterns of our modern townscapes and landscapes. This historical evidence can help us to understand how our towns and villages have evolved and provide a deeper context to inform the making of better places for current and future generations. Every place has its own history which has shaped its character. This makes each place unique and understanding this is a key element of place management.  

2.6.2

Strategic Policy HC 1 therefore seeks to secure the sustainable management, preservation and enhancement of the character and appearance of the historic and cultural environment, whilst supporting appropriate heritage led regeneration proposals to realise the social and economic potential of these assets.

2.6.3

The designated heritage assets and sites referred to in the Policy include:

• Scheduled ancient monuments and archaeological sites.

• Listed buildings and their curtilage.

Conservation areas.

• Register of landscapes, parks and gardens of special historic interest in Wales.

2.6.4

Heritage and culture-led regeneration schemes are schemes where cultural or heritage regeneration is a primary component or driver of the proposal. For example, Strategic Development Area L: Tawe Riverside and Hafod Morfa Copperworks, where the development of a mixed use scheme on the heritage site of the former Hafod Copperworks will enable the restoration of important historic buildings and provision of visitor and interpretation facilities. Furthermore, the sensitive and sustainable reuse of redundant historic cultural buildings such as the Albert Hall and Palace Theatre are important elements of the regeneration and revitalisation of a Swansea Local Development Plan distinctive and vibrant Swansea City Centre. 

2.6.5

It is important to understand the significance of heritage assets in order to assess the acceptability of change. Heritage Impact Assessments (HIA) are required by TAN 24 – The Historic Environment (2014) for listed building consent and conservation area consent applications. It may also be necessary to adopt the HIA approach for settings of listed buildings, development in conservation areas, undesignated heritage assets. 

2.6.6

A fundamental part of the Plan’s Vision is the creation of a place which captures the distinctive relationship between the County’s urban, rural and coastal areas and capitalises on these in order to secure the economic sustainability of the area. In particular, the County’s industrial and waterfront heritage is a vital part of the Council’s initiatives to regenerate the City Centre and Urban Waterfront and ensure that the County represents a strong commercial investment opportunity. 

2.6.7

The historic and cultural environment also provides opportunities for leisure, tourism and recreation across both the County and the wider Swansea Bay Region, and makes a major contribution to the local and regional economy which the Plan seeks to support.

2.6.8

Understanding the role of historic and cultural heritage and how it can be preserved and enhanced will therefore be key to the success of delivering the vision of the Plan.

Policy HC 2: PRESERVATION OR ENHANCEMENT OF BUILDINGS AND FEATURES –

The County’s buildings and features of historic importance will be preserved or enhanced through the following measures:

i. Proposals for alteration and/or extension to a listed building or its curtilage must ensure that the special architectural character or historic interest is preserved;

ii. The change of use of a listed building or its curtilage will only be permitted where this contributes towards the retention of a building or its sustainable reuse without having an adverse effect on its character, special interest or structural integrity;

iii. Permission will not be granted for the total or substantial demolition of a listed building, unless there is the strongest justification and convincing evidence that the proposal is necessary;

iv. Proposals which will have a relationship to a listed building or its curtilage must ensure that the setting is preserved;

v. Development within or adjacent to a conservation area will only be permitted if it would preserve or enhance the character or appearance of the conservation area or its setting.

New development in such locations Swansea Local Development Plan must also be of a high standard of design, respond to the area’s special characteristics, and pay particular regard to:

a. Important views, vistas, street scenes, roofscapes, trees, open spaces, gaps and other features that contribute to the character or appearance of the conservation area;

b. The retention of historically significant boundaries or other elements that contribute to the established form of development;

c. The relationship to existing buildings and spaces, and grain of development;

d. Scale, height and massing, architectural design, established architectural detailing, the use of materials, boundary treatment, and public realm materials.

vi. Development proposed in relation to a locally important historic asset should not have a significant impact on the character and special local interest attributed to it.

Permission will not be granted for the total or substantial demolition of an unlisted locally important building that makes a positive contribution to the character or appearance of an area, unless there is justification and evidence that the proposal is necessary.

vii The preservation or enhancement of Scheduled Ancient Monuments and their settings.

2.6.9

The Policy seeks to ensure that the conservation of the whole built environment is taken into consideration in the determination of applications for both listed building consent and conservation area consent. 

2.6.10

The Policy also seeks to ensure that any new development accords with the special architectural and historic interest of designated conservation areas and their settings. Whilst the character or appearance of conservation areas must be a major consideration, it does not preclude carefully considered contemporary design. Development proposals will be judged for their effect on the character and appearance of conservation areas. 

2.6.11

Clear guidance with respect to the preservation or enhancement of the built environment is contained within National Planning Policy and Guidance. The Plan does not therefore include detailed policies in relation to those areas which are adequately and appropriately protected elsewhere. However the sections below set out the relationship between the Plan and National Planning Policy and Guidance. 

Listed Buildings

2.6.12

Listed buildings are designated by Cadw who maintain the statutory ‘List of Buildings with Special Architectural or Historic Interest’. National Planning Policy and Guidance contains a general presumption in favour of the preservation of listed buildings. Works (internal and external) that would affect the character or historic fabric of a listed building and its curtilage must not be implemented without authorisation of a listed building consent and should be fully justified by means of a Heritage Impact Assessment in accordance with National Planning Policy and Guidance34. Listed buildings are not shown on the Constraints and Issues Map. The Policy seeks to ensure that where a development proposal affects a listed building or its setting, the primary material consideration is the statutory requirement to have special regard to the desirability of preserving or enhancing the building, or its setting35 or any features of special architectural or historic interest which it possesses. Listed buildings will often present opportunity for the restoration and sustainable reuse of historic buildings, for the strengthening of local identity through respect for local characteristics of design, and for the interpretation of hidden heritage assets. Where demolition of a listed building is proposed, applications will be assessed against National Planning Policy and Guidance.

34 TAN 24: Historic Environment

35 For a definition of setting in relation to designated heritage assets see ‘Setting of Historic Assets in Wales, Cadw, (2017)

Conservation Areas

2.6.13

The boundaries of conservation areas within the County are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map. Throughout the Plan period, Conservation Area designations, boundaries and Conservation Area Appraisals (CAA’s) will be reviewed as required, against recognised criteria in National Planning Policy and Guidance. CAA’s will be adopted as SPG following a period of public consultation and any boundary amendments updated on the Constraints and Issues Map accordingly. Adopted CAA’s will provide a clear Swansea Local Development Plan and agreed definition of those elements which contribute to the special character and historic interest of the area. The findings of the CAA's need to be fully taken into account when considering development proposals. Where a Design and Access Statement (DAS) is required to accompany an application for planning permission it should clearly set out how the development preserves or enhances the conservation area. In the assessment of planning applications within or adjacent to a designated conservation area, the Council will seek to preserve or enhance the special character or appearance as defined and promoted by each adopted CAA.36

36 In the case of an application for Listed Building Consent a ‘justification statement’ would be required under paragraph 69 of Circular 61/96. 

2.6.14

A number of the County’s conservation areas lie within the Gower AONB. Applications within the AONB should also be considered where appropriate against Policy H 5 Local Needs Housing Exception Sitesm Policy ER 4 Gower AONB and the Gower AONB Design Guide, which provides SPG to the Plan.

Article 4 Directions

2.6.15

There are a number of Conservation Areas with Article 4 Directions where permitted development rights have been removed to reduce the potential impact of uncontrolled inappropriate and unsympathetic alterations and use of unsuitable materials.

Scheduled Ancient Monuments (SAMs)

2.6.16

The register of SAMs is maintained by Cadw, the Welsh Government’s Historic Environment Service. The Council maintains an Index of Ancient Monuments which lists all SAM’s located within the County and these are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map. Scheduled Monuments consent is required for all proposals that would (potentially) damage, demolish, remove, repair, alter, add to, flood or cover up a SAM. Policies HC 1 and HC 2 highlight that the desirability of preserving and enhancing an ancient monument and its setting (whether scheduled or not) is a material consideration.

Historic Parks and Gardens

2.6.17

The register of historic parks and gardens in Wales identifies parks and gardens and their settings which make an important contribution to the character of the county and which are deemed important to preserve or enhance. Policy HC 2 Preservation or Enhancement of Buildings and Features therefore seeks to ensure that they are given appropriate consideration when development is proposed which affects these assets.

Historic Landscapes

2.6.18

The register of historic landscapes in Wales should be taken into account in considering the implications of developments, which meet the criteria for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). Cadw must be consulted on development within a registered historic landscape area that required an EIA. The method for assessing the effects of proposed development on an area on the register of historic landscapes (ASIDOHL2)37, is included in the “Guide to Good Practice” issued by Cadw and NRW38

37 Assesment of the Significance of Impacts on Historic Landscape

38 Guide to Good Practice on Using the Register of Landscapes of Historic Interest in Wales in the Planning and Development Process.

Historic Environment Records

2.6.19

Not all nationally important remains which may merit preservation will necessarily be scheduled. In appropriate circumstances, other unscheduled archaeological remains of local importance and their setting may also be worthy of protection. Policy HC 2 Preservation of Enhancement of Buildings and Features seeks to reflect their significance either as locally important sites or as currently undesignated sites worthy of potential national designation

2.6.20

The Council has adopted the HER curated by Glamorgan Gwent Archaeological Trust (GGAT) as their record of information about known archaeological and historical sites within the County. It is a critical source of information for:

• Making decisions about the sustainable management of the historic environment;

• Assessing the impact of development upon the archaeological resource;

• Informing heritage led regeneration; and

• Preparing development proposals, and should be referenced in the DAS.

2.6.21

If archaeological work is undertaken as a result of development, the information gained from such works is fed back into the HER, thus enhancing the record for future use.

Archaeological Sensitive Areas

2.6.22

The GGAT has identified Archaeologically Sensitive Areas  (ASA) within the County and these are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map. The designation does not confer statutory control and is not intended to restrict development, but indicates areas where the effect of any proposed development on the archaeological resource may become an issue during the determination of a planning application. Development should be sensitive to the preservation of archaeological remains, and National Planning Policy and Guidance stresses the need to evaluate sites, record them and preserve those that are most important. Developers should therefore identify the likely archaeological resource within the proposed Swansea Local Development Plan development area and consider introducing appropriate mitigation measures into the proposal to protect the identified resource.

Locally Important Buildings and Historic Assets of Special Local Interest

2.6.23

Listed buildingsare determined on the basis of their importance to the nation, either for their architecture or built quality, or for their historic associations.  However, there are a large number of other buildings and undesignated heritage assets which, whilst not of sufficient quality or importance to be listed, make a significant local contribution.  Therefore, whilst these are not afforded the same protection as listed buildings by means of national legislation, the Council will nevertheless seek to protect them from unacceptable or unsympathetic development, including proposals for their demolition, particularly those within conservation areas and buildings that make a prominent positive contribution to townscape.  Therefore the Council will compile and maintain a list of Locally Important Historic Assets which are not already designated scheduled monuments, listed buildings or registered historic parks and gardens.  The list will follow Cadw guidance ‘Managing Lists of Historic Assets of Special Local Interest in Wales’ which ensures the identification of assets to be included are based on sound local evidence, consultation and clear criteria.  This includes assets that make an important contribution to local distinctiveness and have the potential to contribute to public knowledge.  The selection criteria and approach to defining Locally Important Historic Assets will be set out in a document that provides SPG, which will reference a list of locally important heritage assets that meet the criteria.

2.6.24

Historic assets of special local interest will be identified on a case by case basis, these may include:

• Townscapes;

• Buildings, sites or features of historic or archaeological interest and their settings; or Historic landscapes

These by virtue of their historic or cultural importance, character or significance within a group of features, make an important contribution to the local character and the interests of the area.

2.6.25

Proposals for the alteration or extension of a building of local importance or its setting will be expected to retain and conserve features of historic or architectural interest. In those instances where demolition is granted the Council may seek the recording of architectural features and the re-use and recycling of materials in any new development on the site.

Policy HC 3: DEVELOPMENT IN THE WELSH LANGUAGE SENSITIVE AREA –

The Welsh language will be safeguarded and promoted throughout the County. Within the Language Sensitive Area, the Council may subject the following developments on windfall sites to a Welsh Language Impact Assessment:

i. Residential development for 10 or more dwellings; and

ii. Retail, commercial or industrial development with a total floorspace of 1000 sq. m or more.

Planning applications for the above developments on allocated sites within the Language Sensitive Area will be required to submit a Welsh Language Action Plan setting out the measures to be taken to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language.

Click to view HC3 Area on the map

2.6.26

As a whole, the County has a lower percentage of Welsh speakers compared to the Welsh average. However, there are areas within the County where the Welsh language is a significant part of the social fabric of the community, providing a strong sense of place and identity, particularly in Mawr, Clydach and Pontarddulais wards where the percentage of Welsh speakers is greater than the national average. In addition, there are many areas which have experienced a decline in Welsh speakers over the last few years (as noted in  comparing census data between 2001 and 2011). The Plan allocates significant areas of residential and economic growth within the defined Language Sensitive Area in support of regeneration and local employment initiatives. It is important that developments do not negatively impact on the linguistic balance of an area, and instead form sustainable developments which integrate into the social and cultural fabric of the community.

2.6.27

The wards located within the Language Sensitive Area are defined on the Proposals Map and comprise: Clydach, Gorseinon, Gowerton, Kingsbridge, Llangyfelach, Lower Loughor, Mawr, Penllergaer, Penyrheol, Pontarddulais and Upper Loughor. The wards are located in close proximity to each other within the whole of the Greater North West Strategic Policy Zone, together with the adjacent Clydach ward. Collectively they hold the highest percentage of individuals with Welsh language skills. The Plan seeks to protect the integrity of the Welsh language within the identified area, where an average of over 19% of the population speak Welsh.

2.6.28

During pre-application discussions for windfall developments located within the Language Sensitive Area, the Council will determine whether an Impact Assessment is justified, together with the scope of any such assessment. The Council will consult with stakeholders including the Welsh Language Commissioner to determine whether an Impact Assessment is necessary. Evidence from the language impact assessment may inform Swansea Local Development Plan whether measures to mitigate or enhance the impacts of the development on the use of Welsh Language should be applied. Furthermore, development proposals on allocated sites within the Language Sensitive Area that trigger the identified thresholds set out in the Policy will need to be accompanied by a Welsh Language Action Plan (WLAP) setting out the measures to be taken to protect, promote and enhance the Welsh Language. Planning permission will be subject to conditions or legal agreement requiring the implementation of the recommendations of the WLAP. Each development proposal will be different and the scope and range of measures to be included within the WLAP will depend upon the scale, character and location of the development and the type of Welsh language services and facilities that currently serve the community.

As a minimum a WLAP will be expected to include the following:

• Details of the proposed development and its locations; and

• The linguistic character of the community and the availability and capacity of Welsh language provision in the area; and If residential:

• Number and type of dwellings; and

• Estimated increase in school age children as a result of the development; and

If employment/retail/commercial:

• Net additional floorspace; and

• Numbers (and %) of staff presently employed at the premises, including a breakdown of frontline staff. Proposed increase in staff numbers as a result of the development; and

• Information on how a Welsh language service be provided

For all applications:

• Details of any pre-application consultation undertaken and feedback received; and

• Details of the local groups/organisations that have been consulted and provide details of the feedback received; and

• What mitigation measures will be undertaken.

2.6.29

Examples of such mitigation measures may include Welsh/bilingual signage and bilingual marketing material (for residential sites); features that promote Welsh language as an intrinsic element of design and layout, provision of Affordable Housing for Local Needs, support for the provision of Welsh Medium education and support and/or funding for language and cultural awareness initiatives. 

2.6.30

Street and development names should be in Welsh in order to promote and protect local linguistic character, tradition and cultural distinctiveness.

2.7

SOCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE

Policy SI 1: HEALTH AND WELL-BEING –

Health inequalities will be reduced and healthy lifestyles encouraged by ensuring that development proposals:

i. Reflect the spatial distribution of need for primary and secondary healthcare provision, ensuring such proposals are accessible by non-car modes and have the potential to be shared by different service providers;

ii. Create sustainable places that accord with the principles of Placemaking;

iii Are supported by appropriate social infrastructure and community facilities, with good interconnectivity between places and land uses;

iv.Maintain and/or enhance the extent, quality and connectivity of the Active Travel and green infrastructure networks; and v Do not result in significant risk to life, human health or well-being, particularly in respect of air, noise, light, water or land pollution.

2.7.1

This Strategic Policy reflects the direction in National Planning Policy and Guidance that health can be a material considerations in determining planning applications for new developments, and is increasingly recognised as an essential element of delivering sustainable development.  

2.7.2

Implementation of this Policy supports the WBFG Act and also contributes to the delivery of a number of National objectives relating to healthy lifestyles including physical activity and recreation72. The Policy also supports the objective set out in the SIP73 which seeks to ensure “people are healthy, safe and independent”. This is in line with Swansea’s designation as a “Healthy City”, reflecting the Council’s recognition that the built and natural environment, together with lifestyle behaviours, can contribute to improving health. Specifically, the Policy seeks to address the issue raised by the Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation74 that the difference in life expectancy between some wards within the County is up to 12 years. 

72 Our Healthy Future (Welsh Government 2009).

73 One Swansea Single Integrated Plan 2015: Place, People, Challenges and Change. Swansea Local Service Board

74 Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation 2014

2.7.3

The Policy accords with the Plan’s overarching Placemaking approach, by recognising the importance of creating sustainable places that give people the opportunity to live healthy active lifestyles. This includes supporting the development of new Primary and Secondary Healthcare facilities at sustainable locations to facilitate equality of access to social infrastructure, as well as a range of community facilities.

Development that embraces Placemaking Swansea Local Development Plan principles can also improve health through: creating Active Travel opportunities; providing access to community facilities; and creating well-maintained open spaces for physical activity and food growing; by providing access to high quality natural environment. Quality public realm can also have a significant positive effect on people’s mental wellbeing.  

Policy SI 2: PROVIDING AND SAFEGUARDING COMMUNITY FACILITIES AND LOCALLY IMPORTANT USES –

New community facilities must be accessible by Active Travel and public transport, and be conveniently located in relation to other facilities and services wherever possible. Development that would adversely affect the operation, or lead to the loss, of a community facility of local value will not be permitted unless:

i. An alternative facility of at least equal quality and scale to meet community needs will be provided; or

ii. It can be demonstrated that the existing provision is surplus to the needs of the community and there is sufficient provision of a similar relatively accessible and convenient facility to serve the community nearby; or iii.

Evidence is provided that the existing use is no longer viable.

 iv. Evidence is provided of appropriate marketing undertaken to secure an occupier for the established use.

2.7.4

Community facilities such as sports centres, community halls, and in some instances commercial uses, can provide an important function in the health, social and economic well-being of a locality. The Council recognises the importance of achieving and maintaining sustainable settlements by locating such facilities within close proximity to the communities they are intended to serve, so that they can be more readily reached by walking, cycling and public transport. 

2.7.5

New development should relate to the local community in terms of scale and character and ensure the amenities enjoyed by adjoining occupiers are not affected. Proposals which provide new or enhanced multi use community facilities, such as the co-location of facilities within other public buildings such as schools or healthcare centres will be particularly encouraged. 

2.7.6

The loss of a community facility and certain other uses of local value can have a significant impact on community life.

This Policy aims to safeguard a community facility or locally important use, in those instances where it is shown to be of particular local value or merit to the community that it serves, and where its loss would be of demonstrable dis-benefit to that community. A facility can be ‘lost’ by virtue of either a change of use to an existing building, or by means of a redevelopment scheme on the site Swansea Local Development Plan of the facility.

Facilities of local value are defined as those which:

i. play an important role in meeting an identified need;

ii. benefit community vitality and cohesiveness or the local economy; iii. bring other added value in terms of wider benefits for the community;

iv. can demonstrate evidence on the extent to which the facility is valued by the community;

v. contribute to the character of the area and provide a distinctive and unique facility as a destination in the locality;

vi. provide a wider social function, such as venue for social interaction and/or an informal meeting place.

2.7.7

Facilities of local value may include a wide range of locally orientated services and amenities in both urban and rural locations. The following list, whilst not intended to be definitive, provides examples of uses that constitute a community facility:

  1. Class A1 (retail) and Class A3 (food and drink) premises in certain locations, such as small scale convenience goods store, post office, gift shop;
  2. Pub;
  3. Social club;
  4. Sports club;
  5. Community Hall/Centre;
  6. Library;
  7. Place of worship;
  8. Leisure Facility;
  9. Arts and performance venues 
2.7.8

In some instances a facility may be an isolated resource of individual merit where there is no comparable facility within the vicinity, often in rural locations. Rural stores and village shops provide a vital lifeline for communities where access to District and Local Centres is poor. In rural, scenically attractive parts of the County, facilities that serve local residents can also provide an important resource for visitors to the area. As well as convenience stores and the more obvious tourist/gift shops, this can include facilities such as pubs, coffee shops, other Class A3 outlets and leisure facilities.

2.7.9

In other instances the term ‘community facility’ and/or locally important use may apply to a small grouping of premises (such as Class A1 and A3 uses) where there is insufficient unit representation for that grouping to warrant designation as a Local Centre. Such groupings are typically found in more suburban areas of the County and will generally be less than 5 units in total. They can be loose clusters of shops or a small row of a few units, and are often found in older residential neighbourhoods and post-war suburban estates built as social Swansea Local Development Plan housing. A common theme for all such facilities is that they will tend to serve a very localised and captive population. Notwithstanding this local function, some premises will also provide an important resource for visitors to the locality, including tourists, whilst some establishments such as pubs may be sufficiently renowned to bring in trade from a wider catchment. 

2.7.10

Importantly, community facilities and/or locally important uses can in some instances provide a social function and focus to help sustain the life of a community, either by virtue of the particular service it provides and/or as a meeting place and venue for social gatherings. This can apply to pubs and shops as much as it does to the more obvious community halls and social clubs. It is often difficult to quantify the degree of benefit and value that such facilities bring to a particular community. However in cases where there is a lack of opportunities for people to congregate, the loss of such a facility is capable of having a significant adverse impact in terms of community vitality and cohesiveness. This can apply equally in both rural and urban areas. 

2.7.11

The viability of premises as a continuing business or other enterprise will be material to the assessment of a proposal for change of use or redevelopment of an important community facility. 

2.7.12

The Council will, as appropriate, request the submission of evidence that demonstrates the current financial status of a business. Details of the information to be provided would be subject to discussions between the Council and applicant and will be dependent on the nature of the business. The information must however be sufficient to enable an adequate assessment whether an alternative occupier could maintain a financially viable enterprise at the site. tes the  

2.7.13

Establishing viability is not exclusively a financial issue. Community facilities that are non-profit making such as health centres and places of worship will require an assessment of non-financial matters in order to establish ongoing viability. This includes for example an assessment of patronage/attendance levels, the prevalence of other similar facilities in the area and inherent suitability of the location. 

2.7.14

The likelihood of a property containing a community facility remaining vacant for an extended period will also be a material consideration as this can have an adverse visual and social effect on the community in which it is located. In such instances evidence that appropriate marketing and advertising has been carried out to secure the sale of the premises for the established use will be required. The marketing period should be for a minimum 12 months, and would be expected to include advertising on line and the use of appropriate property agents in the locality.

Policy SI 3 – EDUCATION FACILITIES

Where residential development generates a requirement for school places that cannot reasonably be met by schools in the relevant catchment area(s) because:
  1. School capacity would be exceeded by demand; and/or
  2. There is a surplus capacity to accommodate some or all of the projected number of pupils generated, but investment is required to make the existing facilities fit for the purpose of accommodating the additional pupils, developers will be required to either:
  1. Provide land and/or premises for new build Primary or Secondary Schools, having regard to the scale and location of the development; and/or,
  2. Make appropriate financial contributions towards the costs of providing new or improved Primary and/or Secondary School facilities.
Proposals for the development of new primary (inclusive of nursery) and secondary (in some cases inclusive of sixth form) education should:
 
  1. Be appropriately located in relation to the relevant catchment and relate well to existing and proposed neighbourhood services and amenities;
  2. Provide appropriate facilities for parking and drop off;
  3. Include, where appropriate, provision for other appropriate community uses in addition to their educational use;
  4. Phase the provision of school places to achieve a balance between demand and supply. 
2.7.15

The purpose of this Policy is to set out the tailored and flexible approach that the Council will take to the provision of education facilities in association with new development

2.7.16

The Council has a statutory duty to ensure that a sufficient number and variety of school places at primary and secondary level are available to meet the needs of the population of the County. Supply and demand for school places varies by area, along with language and faith preference. However, following a period of growth in demand, unfilled places (surplus capacity) have reduced overall across the County. A key issue for the Plan therefore is to ensure that sufficient additional places are provided to meet the demand generated as a result of the significant number of new dwellings to be delivered over the Plan period

2.7.17

With regard to Strategic Development Areas, it is recognised that the future additional pupils generated from these sites may not be accommodated in existing schools. The Council will therefore require developers to set aside appropriate sites and provide school facilities at initial phases of the development aligned with the Swansea Local Development Plan construction process, and additional forms of entry made available where necessary in later phases, as agreed by the Council. An indication of the level of provision required is set out in the relevant site specific SDA Policies; however it should be noted that the Policies reflect an initial assessment based on existing planned schools infrastructure and level of growth identified in the Plan. Exact provision will need to be considered on a site by site basis over the course of the Plan period in order to take into account the position of education provision at the time of the application. In the case of nonresidential led (i.e. mixed use) SDAs the Council will require a contribution to provision on an appropriate existing school site, unless land is provided within the development site upon which a new school building can be provided. Financial contributions of costs required to provide a new school should be sufficient to cover the actual costs of delivering a school, which will need to be agreed with the planning authority and education authority having regard to the prevailing costs at the time for building schools and in the context of any relevant financial viability appraisal.

2.7.18

The Non-Strategic Housing Sites set out in Policy H 1 will also generate a requirement for additional school places. Where there is evidence of need within the relevant catchment area, the Council will seek contributions to increase and or improve catchment schools in order to accommodate the additional pupils arising from the development.

2.7.19

Where there is increased demand for school places arising from windfall/non-allocated sites the Council will seek to calculate a financial contribution towards the improvement/enhancement of existing provision, either through the improvement of the premises or through contributions to improved/enhanced facilities within the relevant school. 

2.7.20

The negotiation of education provision will be based upon the following approach:

  1. In some circumstances the Secondary and Primary element would be pooled into a joint requirement for one of these such that, for example, the developer may be required to build a larger Primary School than pupil numbers require in order to be able to accommodate anticipated additional future numbers in the area and make the development sustainable. In these circumstances it will be for the Council to determine the most appropriate mechanism to address outstanding investment requirements.
  2. Where the school building is to be provided by the developer this must be in accordance with the guidance and standards relating to education premises contained within Swansea School Standard specification, working collaboratively with the Council, ensuring the ability of the premises to offer good quality learning environments
  3. In the absence of a CIL S123 Regulation List, the Council will pursue an approach of requesting specific S106 agreement contributions to each named school during the interim period in order to ensure that contributions collected are not contrary to the CIL pooling restrictions.  This approach may be reviewed upon the introduction of CIL when specific school projects may be identified in the S123 list.
  4. School provision needs to be carefully phased in order to achieve a balance between demand for and supply of school places.  Where a need is identified, developers should identify appropriate sites and provide schools at the relevant phases of developments.  Additional forms of entry should be made available where necessary.  Where extension to provision is required, contributions will need to be made available at milestones as agreed with the Council, to ensure effective supply of places and effective use of resources for the construction of the places.
  5. Further guidance on the application of the policy will be set out in a document that provides SPG relating to planning obligations.
  6. Opportunities should be taken to share school buildings and facilities, or co-locate on shared sites with other Council service areas and selected external services.  This would serve to maximise the use of the land and provide an integrated citizen focused resource for the whole community.
  7. Dependant on geographical constraints, opportunities should be taken to explore shared school facilities/playing fields with other schools (e.g. a Primary and Secondary School sharing fields) or continuous ages 3-19 school provision.
  8. Where appropriate the Council will explore opportunities to consider alternative options to education provision.  This could include: shared school facilities; continuous school provision (e.g. 3-19); federation; amalgamation; or relocation.
  9. The Council will ensure that all provision is in alignment with the Quality in Education programme.

Policy SI 4 – MORRISTON HOSPITAL

Land adjacent to Morrison Hospital is safeguarded solely for the future development and expansion of the Hospital.
 
Development at this location is restricted to healthcare related uses in association with the beneficial use of Morriston Hospital. Proposals must be set within the context of an appropriate comprehensive masterplan to be agreed with the Council, which must include full consideration of the use of land and buildings on the site of the existing hospital as well as the safeguarded land.
Proposals must be delivered alongside appropriate new and enhanced highway infrastructure that will significantly improve the accessibility of the site compared to the existing substandard road access, based on a scheme to be agreed with the Council and assessed by means of an appropriate Transport Assessment.
 
Development proposals for non-health related uses within the safeguarded land will not be permitted.
 
Click to view Site SI 4
2.7.21

Morriston Hospital is the largest acute hospital administered by Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board (ABMUHB), and is the location of the major accident and emergency department to serve Swansea and the wider area. It has a strategic location close to M4 junction 46 and is recognised as the major trauma centre for South West Wales. 

2.7.22

Extensive improvements, redevelopment and expansion, including the potential development of greenfield land to the north of the existing hospital, are proposed as part of the ARCH (A Regional Collaboration for Health) Portfolio Delivery Plan.  ARCH is a unique regional collaboration between ABMU, Swansea University and Hywel Dda UHB to deliver significant improvements to the provision of healthcare and health and well-being services across South West Wales.  ARCH forms the health and well-being strand of the Swansea Bay City Region City Deal, which provides significant commitment to investment and funding of the projects identified within the ARCH portfolio, including the proposals at Morriston Hospital.  The Council are a key signatory to the City Deal, and are fully supportive of the ARCH proposals for Morriston Hospital which are recognised to have considerable potential to lead to advancements in research, education and healthcare provision, and could provide a major source of new jobs and economic investment.  

2.7.23

The Council’s support for the ARCH proposals is expressed through the safeguarding of land adjacent to Morriston Hospital (as shown on the Proposals Map) solely for their future development and expansion of the Hospital. The land identified for safeguarding reflects that identified by ABMU Health Board as being required to commence delivery of the ARCH proposals within the Plan period. Safeguarded land will remain outside the settlement boundary which clearly reflects the Council’s position that the general principle of development for uses other than for the expansion of the hospital has not been accepted. The safeguarding of land provides an appropriate approach to facilitating delivery whilst recognising the need for flexibility to respond to the refinement of the proposals over the plan period as details of the exact location of health uses and supporting highways and other associated infrastructure emerges.

2.7.24

Detailed proposals must be brought forward in a comprehensive, rather than piecemeal manner, in order to demonstrate that a proposed scheme relates well to the aspirations for redevelopment Swansea Local Development Plan and expansion across the site, and that the potential for re-use of existing buildings and land within the settlement boundary is maximised. 

2.7.25

Associated new and enhanced highway infrastructure measures are required given the existing sub-standard and unsatisfactory Pantlassau Road link to the hospital from Clasemont Road. The opportunities to upgrade this link or improve the junction at Clasemont Road are fundamentally constrained which is likely to necessitate a new dedicated link from the M4 Junction 46, subject to detailed transport modelling.  (See Appendix 5 Plan Ref RM18)

Policy SI 5: PROTECTION OF OPEN SPACE –

Development will not be permitted on areas of open space unless:

  1. It would not cause or exacerbate a deficiency of open space provision in accordance with the most recent Open Space Assessment; or
  2. The substantive majority of existing open space provision on the site is to be retained and enhanced as part of the development and the functional use of the facility would be unaffected; or
  3. The development can provide appropriateopen space provision, that delivers a wider community benefit and is provided in a suitable alternative location; or
  4. A satisfactory financial contribution to  compensatory provision is provided towards an acceptable alternative facility.
2.7.26

For the purposes of the Plan, open space is defined in accordance with guidance within TAN 16 Sport, Recreation and Open Space (2009).  This includes 'Fields in Trust’ (FIT) provision such as playing fields, equipped children’s play areas, outdoor sports facilities, informal recreation or play space and accessible natural greenspace, which is defined in accordance with the ‘Providing Accessible Natural Greenspace in Towns and Cities Toolkit’.  The Council published the Open Space Assessment in 2014.  The Assessment will be continually monitored and updated over the Plan period, providing the evidence base for the Council’s Open Space Strategy (OSS) which will form SPG.  The OSS vision is to provide a strategic framework for the protection, development and improvement of existing open spaces and to increase the provision where there are identified deficiencies.  The OSS will provide suggestions of schemes where alternative provision can justifiably be located or provide justification for financial contributions.  

 

2.7.27

The essential role that the County’s high quality open space provision plays in making up the Green Infrastructure Network is set out in Policy ER 2 Strategic Green Infrastructure Network. It Swansea Local Development Plan recognises that all these spaces afford multiple ecosystem services, in addition to their role in recreation provision. These areas can be important for enhancing biodiversity and connectivity, reducing the impact of climatechange and improving the health and well-being of residents. Policy ER 2 makes clear that green infrastructure should be regarded as a single resource which development will be expected to conserve, enhance and contribute to. It also identifies the specific issues surrounding the protection and provision of recreational open space and accessible natural greenspace.

2.7.28

This Policy aims to protect and enhance existing open space provision, but an element of flexibility is required in order to take into account issues such as changing demographic characteristics, where there may be a surplus of provision, where off site provision could have a wider community benefit. The Policy makes clear that the only occasion when flexibility will be shown towards a scheme that would exacerbate an existing deficiency, and if no alternative provision is provided, is if the substantive majority of the open space facility would be unaffected because the development impacts on only a small part of the site and in functional terms the beneficial enjoyment of the open space would not be affected. In such instances, substantive means greater than 90% of the open space area. In exceptional circumstances where on-site provision cannot be provided the Policy seeks to allow an enhancement or alteration of provision on or off site. Where proposals have the potential to materially and adversely impact upon existing provision, developers will need to demonstrate that alternative provision is available to achieve the standards set out in the Open Space Assessment and Open Space Strategy.

Policy SI 6: PROVISION OF NEW OPEN SPACE –

Open space provision will be sought for all residential development proposals with capacity for 10 or more units. This will include the creation of new on site facilities, or the improvement of existing local provision off-site, along with appropriate maintenance contributions.

A contribution towards improving off-site open space provision in the area will be required for residential development proposals of fewer than 10 units or less where there is a quantitative or qualitative deficiency in open space provision.

All residential development must accord with the principles of providing good children’s play and leisure opportunities by:

i. Ensuring that the design of residential areas prioritises the ability of residents, particularly children, to move freely, socialise and play;

ii. Incorporating ‘Homezone’ style street design and layouts where appropriate and the provision of opportunities for doorstep play;

iii. Designing natural landscaping to create Swansea Local Development Plan opportunities for informal play to complement, and be additional to, any formal play; and

iv. Ensuring that play and leisure spaces, both formal and informal, are focal spaces, fit for purpose and well overlooked by development. The quantity, quality and location of the open space contribution required will be determined against the standards set out the most recent Open Space Assessment and the Open Space Strategy.

2.7.29

This Policy provides the means to achieve the standards set out within the most up to date version of the Open Space Assessment which takes into account the quantity, quality and accessibility of provision. Further details is provided in the Council’s Open Space Strategy which will form SPG.

2.7.30

With regards to recreational open space, the Council applies the FiT standard of 2.4 hectares per 1,000 population, which will be the standard against which all proposals will be assessed when calculating the appropriate amount of recreational open space to be provided. (see Table 3).

2.7.31

With regards to accessible natural greenspace the Council applies the NRW standards for Accessible Natural Greenspace as set out in ‘Providing Accessible Natural Greenspace in Towns and Cities’.42 (See Table 4).

42  Providing Accessible Natural Greenspace in Towns and Cities’ 

2.7.32

In instances where there is surplus open space provision or where the standards may not be able to be achieved, due to for example viability issues or design constraints, a supporting statement will be required from the developer to confirm why the requirement cannot be met. In such instances, the Council may seek commuted sums towards the maintenance or upgrade of existing nearby open space provision instead. Sufficient accessibility to open space provision should be considered early on in the design process to ensure tHat it becomes integral and appropriate to the scheme. Development proposals should clearly stipulate what Swansea Local Development Plan measures will be in place for the future management and maintenance of new open space provision.

Table 6: Standards for Open Space Provision

2.4 Ha FiT per 1,000 population
Open Space  Standard – per 1,000 population
Playing Fields 1.2 Ha
Outdoor Sport 1.6 Ha
Children’s Play 0.8 Ha

Table 7: Accessible Natural Greenspace Standards

2 Ha of accessible natural greenspace per 1,000 population
Tier 1 That no one should live more than 300m from their nearest natural greenspace
Tier 2 That there should be at least one 20 Ha site within 2km of home 
Tier 3 That there should be one accessible 100 Ha site within 5km
Tier 4 That there should be one 500 Ha site within 10km

 

2.7.33

In accordance with the Plan’s objectives of creating desirable, healthy and sustainable places to live, the Policy seeks to ensure that all residential developments consider the needs of both older children and young people for children’s play and leisure opportunities within new developments. This includes consideration of the principles set out in the Policy which are further augmented in the Council’s Residential Design Guide SPGand the Manual for Streets, which relates particularly to the creation of a highway network and urban realm which facilitates opportunities for safe informal play. This can be through the creation of “Homezones”, or designing landscaping to facilitate informal play. All new play provision must be fit for purpose, for example it must have sufficient drainage, be safe and accessible to the children and young people it serves and be sufficiently overlooked.  

2.7.34

Wherever possible, developers should consult with children and young people about the location and type of new or improved provision and their opinions should be taken into consideration in the design of development. Developers are also encouraged to enter into open dialogue with the Council to ensure that meaningful play opportunities are not lost because of future maintenance issues. 

2.7.35

The Policy ensures that children and young people are provided with sufficient opportunities to engage in quality, accessible play opportunities in the area in which they live. This is a key part of children’s personal development and well-being. The right to access to play and leisure opportunities is Swansea Local Development Plan supported by United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) which has been adopted by the Council. The Council also has a duty, under the Child and Families (Wales) Measure 2010, to ensure sufficient play ‘as far as is reasonably practicable’.

2.7.36

Any community, recreational and play facilities within new school developments that are intended for use by the whole community should be suitably available out of school hours including weekends.

Policy SI 7: CEMETERIES –

Land for cemetery use is allocated at:

  1. Penyrheol (Melin Mynach), Gorseinon; and
  2. Land adjacent to the Morriston Crematorium, Mynyddbach.

Click to view cemetery i.

Click to view cemetery ii.

2.7.37

Demand for burial within the County remains consistent despite the national death rate reducing.  It is anticipated that the burial demand forecast will steadily increase over the next 5-10 years as this situation evens out.   

2.7.38

The majority of demand will be met through capacity on existing sites. The Council currently has capacity to continue to provide new graves at the following Cemeteries:

1. Coedgwilym Cemetery, Clydach;

2. Kingsbridge Cemetery, Kingsbridge;

3. Morriston Cemetery, Mynyddbach (adjacent to Morriston Crematorium);

4. Oystermouth Cemetery, Oystermouth, and

5. Rhydgoch Cemetery, Pontarddulais. 

2.7.39

There is also an intention to introduce some areas for new graves in Danygraig Cemetery, St Thomas.

2.7.40

The Council intends to develop the Penyrheol (Melin Mynach) site as an alternative to Rhydgoch Cemetery, which is almost at capacity. It is envisaged that this provision will be required before the end of the Plan period.

2.7.41

In addition, land adjacent to Morriston Crematorium at Mynyddbach has been identified as an emergency planning contingency site for the future. Ground water surveys should be prepared for the allocated sites to ensure that a detailed groundwater analysis is undertaken.

Policy SI 8 – COMMUNITY SAFETY

Development must be designed to promote safe and secure communities and minimise the opportunity for crime.  In particular development shall:
  1. Create places with well-defined routes, spaces and entrances that provide for convenient movement without compromising security;
  2. Provide adequate natural surveillance (overlooking) of adjacent streets and spaces;
  3. Be designed to make crime difficult to commit by increasing the risk of detection;
  4. Create a sense of ownership by providing a clear definition between public and private spaces;
  5. Promote activity that is appropriate to the area, providing convenient access and movement routes;
  6. Provide, where necessary, well-designed security features that integrate sympathetically with the surrounding streetscene, buildings and open spaces;
  7. Create places that are designed with management and maintenance in mind, to discourage crime in the present and the future; and
  8. Avoid the creation of gated communities.
2.7.42

This Policy seeks to ensure that all new developments are designed to reduce opportunities for crime. Increasing community safety and reducing crime, the fear of crime and anti-social behaviour, are key to improving the quality of life and well-being for those who live in and visit the County. ‘Designing in’ Community Safety is key to the delivery of safe and sustainable communities, and should be considered in all developments in all locations. Further detail is set out in the SPG ‘Planning for Community Safety’ . 

2.7.43

This Policy should be read together with Policy PS 2 Placemaking and Place Management. Community Safety requirements should be balanced against the need to create sustainable, attractive and well connected communities. 

2.8

REGENERATION AND COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT

Policy RC 1: SWANSEA CENTRAL AREA REGENERATION –

In order to enhance the attractiveness, viability and competitiveness of the Swansea Central Area, development must accord with the key strategic aims of delivering:

i. Comprehensive regeneration and revitalisation of the Retail Centre;

ii. Increased amounts of high quality office space and city living, including student accommodation;

iii. Education facilities for teaching and research; and

iv. A wider range and choice of visitor attractions and facilities. Development should:

a. Support the Council’s regeneration, renewal and enhancement proposals for the Swansea Central Area; and

b. Comply with appropriate development requirements and proposals set out in adopted Supplementary Planning Guidance.

2.8.1

The Strategic Policy recognises that the regeneration of Swansea Central Area is a corporate priority of the Council and is at the heart of efforts to drive forward the economy of the whole of the Swansea Bay City Region. The Swansea Central Area has a proud history and sense of identity, and is in many ways the public face of the County. Development that enhances its status and profile as a focal destination for commercial and leisure activity will be pursued as part of a coordinated strategy to ensure the Central Area enters a new era of opportunity, continues to benefit from investment and becomes a vibrant centre for work and social interaction for many generations to come. Alongside its commercial function, the Swansea Central Area will be considered the focus for future civic, education and cultural development projects.

2.8.2

Within the Retail Centre boundary, as designated on the Proposals Map, development must be consistent with the aim of delivering a step change in quality for shopping and associated leisure. A specific development opportunity within the Retail Centre has been identified (Policy RC 3 refers), which has the potential to have a transformative impact, particularly by creating a destination that draws trade and visitors back from competing areas. The designated Retail Centre is also shown in the Swansea Central Area Regeneration Framework (The Framework)  . The Framework Swansea Local Development Plan was adopted in 2016 as Council policy and provides SPG to the Plan. This Framework provides further guidance for developers and supplements the proposals within the Plan. It presents a number of overarching themes that development must address as well as Masterplans setting out regeneration principles and development opportunities for the Retail Centre (which The Framework refers to as the Retail and Leisure led Mixed Use Centre) and for the ‘Complementary Areas’ defined in the Plan at Policy RC 4. 

2.8.3

Specific proposals for key sites within the Swansea Central Area are set out in detail within site specific policies elsewhere in the Plan and in relevant SPG.

Policy RC 2 – RETAIL AND LEISURE DEVELOPMENT

Retail and leisure proposals must in the first instance assess the suitability of sites and premises within the following Centres of the retail hierarchy, having regard to the nature, scale and location of the proposed development: 
  1. Swansea Central Area Retail Centre
  2. District Centres
  3. Local Centres
In accordance with National Planning Policy, where proposals demonstrate there are no suitable available sites or premises within the above Centres, then edge of centre sites can be considered in preference to out of centre locations.  Within the Swansea Central Area, Complementary Areas will be considered edge of centre locations.
 
Appropriate assessments of need and retail impact must be submitted by the developer in support of proposals at edge of centre and out of centre sites.
 
Where evidence clearly demonstrates that no sites within centres or at edge of centre locations can be made available for the proposed development, out of centre sites will be considered.  In such circumstances, developers should consider available sites and premises within defined Retail Park boundaries, which are the preferred location for out of centre retail developments.  
 
Retail and leisure proposals will only be permitted at out of centre locations outside Retail Parks in exceptional circumstances, and where a specific need is identified, for:
  1. Small scale development intended only to serve an identified local need (in accordance with Policy RC 6 Local Centres);
  2. Development that is part of a planned new Centre or is a specific facility proposed to serve a substantial new residential neighbourhood within a Strategic Development Area (in accordance with Policy RC 8 Commercial Development Within Strategic Development Areas);
  3. Development that requires a particular type of unit, either with an extensive floor area and/or a bespoke designed premises, that is not normally available within Centres or Retail Parks, in order to accommodate the proposed range of goods to be sold.
2.8.4

The Policy promotes the Plan’s defined Centres, as the most appropriate and sustainable locations for locating new retail, leisure and supporting commercial development. The co-location of facilities and services at such locations will help support their long term health and vitality as convenient and attractive places to shop, live, socialise, access services for health and well-being, and to conduct business. It will also encourage linked trips and a reduction in travel demand. The term ‘Centre’, as used in this Policy and throughout the Plan, refers specifically to only the Swansea Central Area Retail Centre and the network of District and Local Centres that are identified on the Proposals Map. Retail Parks within the County, also defined on the Proposals Map, are not Centres. 

2.8.5

This Policy confirms that the Swansea Central Area Retail Centre sits at the head of the local and regional hierarchy. The Retail Centre is designated on the Proposals Map. It is a ‘sub area’ within the wider Swansea Central Area, since the latter is not appropriately designated as the ‘Centre’ for planning purposes, given it encompasses significant areas of residential and other non-core retail districts. Any proposals within the Swansea Central Area Retail Centre must accord with Policy SD J and Policy RC 3.

2.8.6

For the avoidance of doubt, sites and premises that are within the Swansea Central Area but outside the Retail Centre are categorised as being outside of the Centre for planning purposes. Such sites are, however, considered preferential to out-ofcentre Retail Parks given the potential for investment at such locations to have a stimulating effect upon efforts to revitalise the Centre.

2.8.7

The Policy highlights the requirement set out in Swansea Local Development Plan National Planning Policy and Guidance for developers to exhaust all appropriate options within Centres in the first instance, before edge of centre and out-of-centre sites are considered. This exercise must involve a comprehensive review of all potentially suitable sites, including possible buildings for conversion and/or reasonable opportunities to re-model existing units to accommodate a proposed development. Proposals must demonstrate flexibility in this regard and consider how the business could reasonably trade within those sites and units that are available, or likely to become available, within Centres. This flexible approach may require a modification to the proposed operators’ typical trading circumstances. 

2.8.8

The onus of proof that sites within Centres have been thoroughly assessed rests with the developer. For the avoidance of doubt the sequential order of priority requires developers to consider edge of centre locations (if no suitable ‘in-centre’ sites can be found) before any out-of-centre site is considered. The sequential assessment should include evidence relating to the likely distribution of demand and the size of the catchment area that the development would serve.

2.8.9

For proposals outside Centres, the Policy emphasises that, as a starting point, the developer must demonstrate by means of suitable evidence whether there is a need for the proposed scheme. Establishing quantitative need is the first requirement and takes precedence over qualitative factors such as the impact on travel patterns.

2.8.10

The findings of the Swansea Retail and Leisure Study (2015), carried out by independent retail analysts, are based on a bespoke household survey and the latest market data. This Study concludes that there is not any quantitative need for additional convenience goods floorspace during the Plan period, which is a conclusion based on the overall scale of existing provision across the County. The Study recognises however that this represents a global capacity figure and it is feasible that, during the course of the Plan period, a developer may be able to demonstrate a degree of quantitative need for new convenience provision having regard to changing circumstances such as commitments for housing growth within a given catchment. Developers will need to use appropriate methodologies and up to date evidence and survey data in order to identify any such need.

2.8.11

The Retail and Leisure Study also states that, whilst there is not any surplus expenditure capacity for comparison goods floorspace at 2020, by 2025 surplus goods expenditure capacity does emerge and extends to £62.6m. If Swansea City Centre is able to grow its market share and fill an identified ‘trading gap’ by transforming the retail and leisure opportunities within the defined Centre, there is considered to be a realistic opportunity to support an increased level of retail floorspace. Swansea Local Development Plan The Study emphasises that it is imperative such additional floorspace is directed towards.

2.8.12

Any consideration of qualitative need for retail provision should include assessment of the following indicators: the standard of existing retailing facilities (including available retail formats); the range and mix of goods on offer elsewhere; the distribution of retail provision; impact on travel patterns; and relative accessibility by a range of travel modes.

2.8.13

The precise detail and scope of evidence that will be required to support an application will vary depending on the nature, scale and scope of the proposed scheme. The nature of any assessment to be undertaken should be discussed and agreed with the LPA prior to submission with the Local Planning Authority to ensure a suitable methodology is adopted that meets the requirement to demonstrate need. Any retail planning application over 2,500 sq m (gross) will need to be accompanied by a Retail Impact Assessment. 

2.8.14

Evidence shows that the retail core within the Swansea Central Area has suffered significantly as a result of the extent of out-of-centre development that has become established across the region, particularly in terms of unrestricted Class A1 retail. Retail proposals that seek to increase the amount and scale of Class A1 retail at out-of-centre Retail Parks will therefore be predominantly restricted to the sale of bulky goods. This approach responds to the evidence base that emphasises further proliferation of certain types of out-of-centre retail and leisure development at Retail Parks and other out-of-centre locations will pose a major threat to the future success and viability of the Council’s aspirations to revitalise the Centre as a destination. This research emphasises that restricting further competing development at out-ofcentre locations should be a priority of planning policy.  

2.8.15

Established out-of-centre retail developments may seek over time to change the range of goods they sell or the nature of the sales area, for example by subdivision to a mix of smaller units, or to a single ‘department’ store. Proposals at such locations may also seeks to redevelop or extend additional floorspace (possibly in the form of mezzanine floors). In such circumstances proposals for established sites will be considered against the principles set out in the Plan and National Planning Policy and Guidance.

2.8.16

A departure to the defined hierarchy will only be considered if convincing evidence is submitted in support of a proposal to demonstrate that such development is justified as an exception, and that there would be no material adverse impact caused by the development to the attractiveness, vitality or viability of any Centre defined in the Retail Hierarchy. The Policy identifies a number of specific exceptional circumstances where, subject to a specific need being identified, an out of centre retail or leisure proposal may be appropriate. Criterion b allows for suitable proposals that meet the day to day needs of proposed new residential neighbourhoods, in the interests of good placemaking and creating cohesive communities. Policy RC 8 sets out the criteria against which such proposals will be judged. Given their characteristics, particularly their substantively mixed use and commercial nature, sites SD I, SD K, SD J and SD L are excluded from the exemption in criterion b. Criterion c only allows for those instances where a particular proposal must reasonably have a specific type of unit not normally found in either a centre or retail park if it is to successfully trade, due to the floorspace and layout requirements. This includes vehicle show rooms.  

2.8.17

Evidence indicates that appropriate leisure uses can be equally pivotal as retail to the success of some Centres, and to delivering a thriving and attractive destination to visit, socialise and spend money. Leisure uses are considered to have a particularly important role for revitalising the Swansea Central Area Retail Centre, in order to broaden its appeal across both day and night time economies. Leisure development includes appropriate commercially and publically provided uses within Planning Use Classes A3, D1, D2 and Sui Generis, which incorporates a range of food and drink, recreation, arts and cultural provision. Similarly, delivering a broader and more comprehensive range of leisure uses at Retail Parks and certain out-of-centre locations, including A3 uses, could have a huge impact on the ability of the Swansea Central Area to compete with these rival destinations, attract new investment and claw back trade.  

Policy RC 3 – SWANSEA CENTRAL AREA RETAIL CENTRE

The Swansea Central Area Retail Centre sits at the top of the retail hierarchy and is the sequentially preferred location for all significant retail and leisure development. Retail (Class A1) will be regarded as the most appropriate ground floor use within the Centre.
 
The priority proposal within the Retail Centre is for a comprehensive regeneration and redevelopment scheme at the St David’s/Quadrant site.  This priority proposal will accommodate the identified quantitative and qualitative need for comparison goods retail floorspace over the Plan period.  Any proposals, either within or outside the Swansea Central Area, which would put at risk the comprehensive regeneration of the St David’s/Quadrant area, or adversely affect the potential to enhance and redevelop the Retail Centre, will not be supported.
 
Development within the Retail Centre must serve to improve connectivity between the Centre and the City Waterfront, and enhance the Oystermouth Road frontage with particular attention given to the design of proposals at the most visually prominent gateway edges.
 
Click to view Site RC 3
2.8.18

The future success of Swansea Central Area as a truly vibrant and attractive destination to visit and spend leisure time will be partly reliant on its ability to deliver developments that create the right balance of retail and leisure experiences within a coherent, legible and consolidated ‘core’ shopping district, complemented by high quality public realm

2.8.19

Consolidating such uses within a defined ‘Retail Centre’ at the heart of the Swansea Central Area will provide the necessary focal point for a vibrant shopping and leisure experience, which crucially must meet the needs and desires of those that might choose to visit the Centre. Sequential priority will be given to the defined Centre for all significant retail and leisure development to support regeneration initiatives and ensure it becomes a focus for growth of the City Region

2.8.20

Evidence shows that whilst the success of a city such as Swansea as a destination and a place to visit is in many ways underpinned by its retail offer, this needs to be supplemented by appropriate leisure facilities in order to create a diverse experience that attracts footfall, spend and supports a thriving day and night time economy. Development proposals will need to deliver the right offer and balance of such facilities, led by national retailers and supported by independent traders as well as restaurants, cafes cinemas and wet weather tourist facilities.  

2.8.21

Whilst retail uses will be required to dominate frontages within the Centre at ground floor level, leisure uses, particularly Class A3 food and beverage uses, will also be appropriate in some instances at ground floor level. Cafés and restaurants provide an important function in their own right ensuring that footfall generated by the primary retail function of the Centre is retained within the Centre, and consumers and shoppers do not have to leave the Centre during the course of their shopping trip, thereby retaining economic activity in the Centre. Decisions on the suitability of Class A3 proposals will be made having regard to the criteria set out in Policy RC 9 Ground Floor Non-Retail Uses within Centres, with a particular focus on the level of activity and interest that the proposed use and window design would generate and contribute towards the streetscene.  

2.8.22

The streets and areas that comprise the defined Centre include the shopping frontages of Oxford Street, Whitewalls, Princess Way, Castle Street, Wind Street and the Quadrant Shopping Centre.  It also includes the site of the former St David’s Centre, which in recent years has been cleared as part of the enabling works for future regeneration

2.8.23

Delivering a comprehensive retail led regeneration scheme at the St David’s/Quadrant site, incorporating a significant scale of supporting leisure uses, is the priority regeneration proposal for the Swansea Central Area.  The site is a high profile, prominent gateway location, and highly accessible given its proximity to the adjacent bus interchange.  A comprehensive regeneration and redevelopment scheme at the St David’s/Quadrant site is the priority proposal for delivery within the Centre to secure the necessary step change as a regional shopping and leisure destination. 

2.8.24

Substantial work has been undertaken to advance this priority proposal, referred to by the Council as ‘Swansea Central’.  To ensure delivery the Council has taken on the role of Developer and Funder itself, working in collaboration with a private sector development team.  It has obtained planning permission for the comprehensive scheme, secured substantial funding commitments through City Deal and other sources to support its own funding, and is acquiring anchor tenants for key elements.  The Swansea Centre scheme is split into two physical phases of implementation, which will deliver approximately 7000 sq m of net new floorspace that will be primarily Class A1 retail but will also incorporate Class A3 leisure uses.  The proposals also involve residential and other commercial uses, and substantial infrastructure and public realm improvements throughout the Retail Centre.  Phase 1 is scheduled for pre-construction and enabling works during 2018, with completion set for 2020.  Phase 2 is scheduled for completion by 2022/23.

2.8.25

The proposals will deliver a transformative qualitative improvement in the Class A1 and A3 retail and leisure offer of Swansea, acting as the catalyst for investment in the Retail Centre, and wider Swansea area.  The Swansea Central proposal, and other regeneration opportunities within the Retail Centre, will meet all of the identified quantative need for additional net sales comparison goods floorspace over the Plan period, based on the surplus expenditure capacity identified in the Swansea Retail and Leisure Study (2015).  Whilst the Swansea Central Scheme will absorb the vast majority of the identified capacity over the Plan period, it will be very important to retain any potential residual remainder within the Retail Centre, as there are other planned retail led redevelopment opportunities within the Centre, including regeneration proposals for Castle Square, and areas linking Swansea Central to the Quadrant Shopping Centre.  Proposals within the Retail Centre must integrate with the existing Quadrant Shopping Centre and deliver a vibrant and regionally dominant visitor destination. The regeneration and redevelopment of this priority site is essential to reinforce the prime retail area and leisure offer within the Centre and generate a critical mass necessary to achieve the aim of a step change in retail and leisure activity at this location. 

2.8.26

Proposals will need to be in accordance with relevant SPG and Council approved strategies that provide further clarity in the guilding principles for development at the site.

2.8.27

It is vital that proposals for this location are not compromised by other development schemes, either within the Swansea Central Area or elsewhere within the County.  Changes to the national retail and leisure context emphasise the need for this approach.  It is increasingly the case that high street operators are rationalising their investment programmes and reducing their existing national store portfolios.  In addition, there has been an upturn in established retail and leisure operations ceasing trading, with new entrants to the market exercising caution.  To obtain retailer commitments for priority regeneration schemes, it is more important than ever that the Council provides a planning framework that provides developers with confidence that their investments will not be compromised.  Applications will be assessed to ensure they would not undermine efforts to enhance the Retail Centre, and would not adversely affect its potential to deliver appropriate uses and facilities that are required to deliver its revitalisation.

Policy RC 4: SWANSEA CENTRAL AREA - COMPLEMENTARY AREAS –

Within the Swansea Central Area Complementary Areas, development that delivers an appropriate mix  of uses will be permitted in accordance with the particular functions and opportunities for regeneration and renewal at each location, which should:

  1. Create a unique and landmark seafront destination at the City Waterfront incorporating residential, leisure and small scale retail uses alongside educational facilities, capitalising on the outstanding setting of Swansea Bay and maximising the potential afforded by its proximity to the Retail Centre and other waterfront areas;
  2. Deliver high quality office accommodation as part of a new business district at the Kingsway and Orchard Street, in association with residential and supporting uses that incorporate active frontages at street level, which in combination provide for a significantly enhanced street scene and public realm;
  3. Contribute to the regeneration of High Street as a mixed residential, cultural and commercial area of distinctive character, and help to revitalise this key link between the rail station and the Retail Centre;
  4. Redefine Mansel Street and Alexandra Road as an area for living, working and learning, with a focus on civic, cultural and educational uses on Alexandra Road;

Renew and upgrade Parc Tawe as a Retail Park for a range of uses that complement and do not      

  1. compete with the role and function of the Retail Centre.  In the longer term permit the redevelopment of parts of the site and its surroundings for an alternative mix of non-retail uses, including significant residential development;
  2. Enhance the Maritime Quarter as a vibrant and distinctive waterside district that accommodates a range of uses, including residential, food and drink, and small scale offices that must maximise the potential afforded by its maritime heritage and character, and play a pivotal role in connecting the Retail Centre to SA1, the riverside and seafront.
  3. Deliver high quality leisure or other complementary development as part of the wider St David’s/Quadrant area redevelopment at the LC car park site.

Development must make positive use of the defining attributes of the respective Complementary Areas, enhance connections to the Retail Centre, and complement rather than compete with the role and function of the Retail Centre and other Complementary Areas.

2.8.28

Whilst delivering new retail and leisure development is seen as critical to the future success of the Swansea Central Area, facilitating mixed uses will also be integral to creating an attractive and vibrant Central Area. The identity and roles of all the other Complementary Areas around the Retail Centre need to be developed, by maximising their respective strengths and attributes, delivering a range of appropriate activities and uses ensuring that all of the areas have a clear economically viable role which complements the Retail Centre, and ensuring that the overall offer is suitably diversified. The role of, and opportunities for, the complementary areas are further detailed in the Area Based Key Regeneration Initiatives, and Development and Design Principles set out in the Swansea Central Area Regeneration Framework (2016), which provides SPG for the policy.  Furthermore, any proposed development must accord with Policy SD J Swansea Central Area and Policy RC 3 Swansea Central Area Retail Centre.

2.8.29

High Street, The Kingsway and Orchard Street, and Alexandra Road and Mansel Street are already undergoing change and are identified in the Swansea Central Area Regeneration Framework as areas for working, living and learning. These areas have suffered most in terms of vacancy rates, declining shopper and visitor footfall and the quality of the built environment. However they are developing a new role in terms of providing opportunities for new homes, employment, educational and cultural use by the redevelopment of sites and re-use of buildings. High Street is already changing and adopting a clear economically viable role, with supporting residential and employment uses promoting a wider range of activities beyond commercial and retail use. The Kingsway is identified as having a potential new role as a business district, with developments at key sites such as the former Oceana site acting as a catalyst for the area.

.

2.8.30

Key sites on Swansea’s Waterfront, such as the Civic Centre on the City Seafront and Sailbridge site in the Maritime Quarter, have further potential to express Swansea’s distinctive character, its links to the sea, and links to its historic, cultural and industrial heritage. These sites have a significant profile and have the potential to include landmark developments with high quality public space, linkages, active frontages and a good sense of place. A range of uses are possible on the sites including, residential, hotels, cultural and leisure facilities, public attractions, aquatic sciences, visitor facilities and event spaces. These uses should be set within a high quality innovative public realm that can generate high levels of activity that spill out on the promenade and make positive use of the beach and riverside. 

2.8.31

Given the current underperformance of the Retail Centre, and the requirement to safeguard the viability of the redevelopment proposals for St David’s/Quadrant site, it is critical that Parc Tawe (Phases 1 and 2) serves to complement and not compete with the defined Centre.  Due to the character, format, layout and physical separation of Parc Tawe from the core shopping streets, it serves as a Complementary Area that has a different role within the retail hierarchy.  Retail and leisure proposals at Parc Tawe, including proposed Use Class changes and variations to the permitted sale of goods, will be subject to the need, sequential and impact tests as set out in Policy RC 2 Retail and Leisure Development.  The comprehensive redevelopment of Parc Tawe for an alternative mix of uses presents a potentially transformative opportunity for this gateway site, and such opportunities will be encouraged.

Policy RC 5: DISTRICT CENTRES –

District Centres are designated at:
 
1.Clydach (Click to view Site]
2.Gorseinon  (Click to view Site]
3.Gowerton  (Click to view Site]
4.Killay  (Click to view Site]
5.Morriston  (Click to view Site]
6.Mumbles  (Click to view Site]
7.Pontarddulais  (Click to view Site]
8.Sketty  (Click to view Site]
9.Uplands (Click to view Site]
 
Within designated District Centres proposals will be required to:
 
i.Maintain or improve the range and quality of shopping provision, or appropriate complementary commercial and community facilities;
 
ii.Be of a scale, type and character that will enhance the future vitality, viability and attractiveness of the Centre;
 
iii.Ensure that ground floor uses contribute to an attractive and vibrant street scene throughout the day;
 
iv.Retain the predominant shopping role and function of the Centre;
 
v.Be consistent with the aims of maintaining and improving the quality of the physical environment, the provision of short term parking, and accessibility by public transport and Active Travel. 
 
2.8.32

The District Centres defined in the policy are designated on the Proposals Map.  District Centres need to retain appropriate retail opportunities to ensure they are vibrant and attractive locations that are well equipped to support the communities they serve. This includes providing for an appropriate range and choice of convenience shopping facilities to meet day to day needs. 

2.8.33

District Centres also provide opportunities for an appropriate blend of non-retail uses that can play an important role in sustaining vitality and viability.  The criteria set out in the policy seeks to ensure that development proposals deliver the right offer and balance of facilities in order to encourage investment.  A flexible approach will be taken to the consideration of proposed changes of use where appropriate to respond to changing needs and circumstances, but within an overarching framework of safeguarding the primary shopping function of Centres.

2.8.35

A range of uses with Centres, in addition to Class A1 retail, can generate footfall and help maintain vibrancy and attractiveness. It is imperative that proposals maintain an appropriate mix and balance of uses, and fundamentally respect the primary shopping function. 

Policy RC 6: LOCAL CENTRES –

Small scale retail and leisure proposals, and other uses intended primarily to meet the day to day needs of the local neighbourhood, will be directed towards suitable sites and premises within Local Centres at:

1. Blaenymaes (Broughton Avenue) (Click to view Site)

2. Brynhyfryd (Llangyfelach Road)  (Click to view Site)

3. Brynymor (Brynymor Road)  (Click to view Site)

4. Clase (Rheidol Avenue)  (Click to view Site)

5. Fforestfach (Carmarthen Road)  (Click to view Site)

6. Hafod (Neath Road)  (Click to view Site)

7. Kittle (Pennard Road)  (Click to view Site)

8. Maritime Quarter (north and south of dock)  (Click to view Site)

9. Mayhill (Gors Avenue)  (Click to view Site)

10. Mayhill (Mayhill Road)  (Click to view Site)

11. Murton (Manselfield Road)  (Click to view Site)

12. Penlan (Conway Road)  (Click to view Site)

13. Penlan (Crwys Terrace)  (Click to view Site)

14. Penclawdd (Station Square)  (Click to view Site)

15. Port Tennant (Port Tennant Road)  (Click to view Site)

16. Ravenhill (Caereithin Cross)  (Click to view Site)

17. Sandfields/Brunswick (St Helens Road)  (Click to view Site)

18. Sketty (Sketty Park Drive) 19. Townhill (Graiglwydd Square)  (Click to view Site)

20. Townhill (Penygraig Road)  (Click to view Site)

21. Trallwn (Trallwn Road)  (Click to view Site)

22. Tycoch (Tycoch Cross)  (Click to view Site)

23. West Cross (Alderwood Road)  (Click to view Site)

24. West Cross (West Cross Lane)  (Click to view Site)

25. Winch Wen (Colwyn Avenue)  (Click to view Site)

Small scale in the context of this policy embraces retail and leisure proposals less than 1000 sq m gross floor area.

Within local centres, development proposals, including change of use, for retail, food and drink, and other appropriate non-residential uses will generally be supported where they maintain or improve the vitality and vibrancy of the commercial frontage and the ability of the centre to meet the day to day needs of the neighbourhood that it serves.

2.8.36

Local Centres are generally smaller in size than District Centres, more residential in nature, and do not typically have the scale or variety of retail and non-retail uses. As a consequence proposals other than Class A1 may be more difficult to satisfactorily accommodate than in District Centres, and the importance of safeguarding residential amenity will be a key consideration.

2.8.37

The boundaries of those Local Centres defined in the Policy vary considerably, ranging from a tightly arranged terrace of commercial units (such as Brynymor Road) to more dispersed arrangements of a similar number of units that cover a larger neighbourhood area (such as Neath Road, Hafod). Whilst the locations of the Local Centres are shown on the Proposals Map, their individual boundaries Swansea Local Development Plan are not delineated. Applications will be considered on their merits as to whether the proposals can reasonably be described as being sited within the Local Centre in a suitable unit, for example having regard to the prevailing arrangements of existing units, the land uses surrounding the site and the design of the premises.

2.8.38

Within the Plan period new Local Centres are proposed at a number of residential led SDAs, where this Policy will also apply.

Policy RC 7: OUT OF CENTRE RETAIL PARKS –

Out of Centre Retail Parks are designated at:

1. Cadle (Pontarddulais Road) (Click to view Site)

2. Cwmdu  (Click to view Site)

3. Fforestfach  (Click to view Site)

4. Morfa  (Click to view Site)

5. Swansea Enterprise Park  (Click to view Site)

Class A1 (retail) proposals within designated Out of Centre Retail Parks will be restricted to the sale of predominantly bulky goods, and/or other goods that would not typically be sold from premises within a Centre. The tests of need, sequential approach, and impact will apply to the consideration of all proposals at edge of centre and out of centre locations.

Proposals for Class A3 (food and drink) floorspace within designated Out of Centre Retail Parks will be restricted to small scale provision that is ancillary and incidental to the primary retail function of the Park, or a facility that due to its operational and functional requirements cannot reasonably be accommodated within a Centre. Small scale for the purposes of this Policy refers to a facility less than 200 sq m gross floor area.

Class D2 (leisure) proposals will only be permitted at Out of Centre Retail Parks if the developer demonstrates that there is no viable prospect of the proposed scheme being accommodated within, or on the edge of, the Swansea Central Area Retail Centre or nearby District Centres, either within existing premises or at a site identified for development, as required by the sequential test.

2.8.39

The destinations identified in this Policy are the only formally recognised Out of Centre Retail Parks within the County that meet the necessary criteria for categorisation as set out in the Plan.

Whilst other out-of-centre retail destinations within the County may contain similar commercial operators as those found at these locations, only those destinations defined in the Policy exhibit the necessary broad range of characteristics to be classified as Retail Parks, which includes consideration of:

• Retailer representation, including presence of anchor stores;

• Customer profile, in particular whether the store serves predominantly public rather than trade;

• Size of units, which should be generally greater Swansea Local Development Plan than the size of units available within Centres ;

• Design, layout and configuration of units;

• Parking arrangements, in particular availability of a central parking area to serve the Retail Park. 

2.8.40

All Retail Parks defined in the Policy are located outside the boundaries of designated Centres. A retail Park also exists at Parc Tawe, which is located within a Complementary Area of the designated Swansea Central Area. The Retail Park at this location is edge of centre in retail planning terms rather than out of centre, and is therefore not listed within Policy RC 7. Proposals at Parc Tawe will be assessed in accordance with Policies RC 1 – RC 4. 

2.8.41

Retail development at the locations defined in the Policy will be restricted to bulky goods retailing by means of appropriate planning conditions and/or legal agreements. This requirement is founded on evidence that highlights the potential future adverse effect of the further proliferation of unrestricted retail (Class A1) at locations outside Centres, which necessitates the need for appropriate control mechanisms. The Policy respects the specific role and function of Retail Parks, which can provide a complementary role to Centres by providing opportunities for large format, bulky goods retailing that does not compete with in-Centre trading. The Plan thereby provides for a viable future for out-ofcentre Retail Parks, based on a form of retail and leisure that does not compete with Centres. The Policy requires that bulky goods should be predominant, but allows for proposals for other goods that are not necessarily ‘bulky’, but that are also not typically sold from premises within a Centre, to be considered on their merits.  

2.8.42

Class A1 Retail proposals referred to in the Policy includes applications for mezzanine floors, changes of use, extensions, redevelopment and refurbishment.

2.8.43

Leisure uses will not be permitted at Retail Parks if judged to give rise to a critical mass and range of facilities that pose a threat to the future vitality, viability and attractiveness of the Swansea Central Area or District Centres. The Policy aim is founded on evidence that emphasises the threat posed by Retail Parks in future becoming ‘all round destinations’ for customers to have such a range and opportunity for retail and leisure experiences that it negates the need to undertake any separate visit to existing Centres. This presents one of the most significant threats to the viability of the Swansea Central Area and regeneration proposals that seek to deliver a revitalised retail and leisure destination. 

2.8.44

The Policy recognises that certain proposals have operational requirements that cannot reasonably be accommodated within Centres. A ‘drive through’ restaurant/café proposal for example represents a Class A3 operation that, due to its circulation requirements and size constraints, would not typically be located within a Centre and may instead be accommodated within a Retail Park.

Policy RC 8: COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT WITHIN STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT AREAS –

Retail, leisure and appropriate complementary commercial proposals will be supported within allocated Strategic Development Areas only where:

i. It is specifically identified as an opportunity as part of a site specific proposal and included on the relevant SDA concept plan as an integral element of a planned new neighbourhood to reinforce a sense of place;

ii. It is sited in an appropriate, central location within the community that it is to serve, and within close proximity to a public transport corridor;

iii. It is of an appropriate scale to meet an identified evidenced need;

iv. It would not negatively impact upon the vitality, viability and attractiveness of a designated Centre. 

2.8.45

It is important to the sense of place of any new proposed neighbourhood that it is served by an appropriate number and scale of retail, leisure or other appropriate complementary commercial facilities. Future residents of SDAs need to be able to access day to day services and facilities such as small convenience stores, chemists, food and drink outlets, and medical clinics.

Policy RC 9: GROUND FLOOR NON-RETAIL USES WITHIN CENTRES –

GROUND FLOOR NON-RETAIL USES WITHIN CENTRES

Within the Swansea Central Area Retail Centre and District Centres, proposals for non-retail uses at ground floor level must not give rise to an unacceptable loss and dilution of retail frontage, or have a significant adverse impact upon the vitality, viability or attractiveness of the centre, having regard to:

i. The relationship of the proposed unit to other existing or approved non-retail uses within the centre, with a presumption against proposals that result in a continuous run of 3 or more nonretail uses;

ii. The effect upon the shopping function of the centre, either individually or in combination with other non- A1 retail uses;

iii. The nature and design of the shop front and window display that is to be provided;

iv. The location and character of the unit and/or site, including its relative proximity to the most primary frontage and its relative importance for retention as a retail use by virtue of its: design; orientation; size; or siting;

v. The impact of the proposed use upon the amenity of adjacent or nearby residents and businesses;

vi. Whether the development allows for, or retains the effective use of, upper floors; and

vii. The likelihood of the unit remaining vacant for a significant period of time, to be informed by evidence of appropriate marketing undertaken over a minimum of 12 months to establish a retail occupier.

Business (Class B1) and residential (C3) uses will not generally be supported at ground floor level.

2.8.46

A range of uses within Centres, in addition to Class A1 retail, can generate footfall and help maintain vibrancy and attractiveness. It is imperative that proposals maintain an appropriate mix and balance of uses, and fundamentally respect the primary shopping function. Guidance on the appropriate proportions of Class A1 retail uses to be retained within primary and secondary frontages is set out in SPG, avoiding any unacceptable deadening of the commercial frontage.

Policy RC 10: EMPLOYMENT AND ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT –

Land which is in active, viable employment use is considered part of the County’s employment land bank and will be protected for B Class employment generating uses.

Proposals for employment use (B Class) on sites outside existing employment or industrial areas will need to demonstrate in the first instance why the proposal cannot reasonably be located within an existing employment area, or designated Strategic Development Areas where appropriate, having regard to the nature and scale of the scheme. 

2.8.47

It is essential that there are employment land opportunities available for a range of potential enterprises and commercial investors to accommodate employment generating proposals and to facilitate diversification of the economic base. 

2.8.48

There is no identified requirement for the allocation of non-strategic employment sites. The Policy framework instead safeguards the land and premises in active viable employment use, for future employment use, which will allow for churn and provide choice.  Appropriate flexibility must be retained in-line with Policy PS 4 Sustainable Employment Strategy to recognise that in some instances, circumstances may change and sites could become unviable.

2.8.49

However the Council recognises the importance of allowing some appropriate flexibility for windfall employment opportunities within settlement boundaries. It will need to be demonstrated that proposals would not have an adverse effect on surrounding uses or allocations. Proposals should be suitably served by supporting infrastructure, particularly sustainable modes of transport.

2.8.50

The policy will protect employment land and premises from inappropriate development in-line with National Planning Policy and Guidance43 to ensure that a range of sites and premises are retained for appropriate job creating development over the Plan period.  It should be read in conjunction with Policies RC 4 Swansea Central Area Complementary Areas and RC 5 District Centres and RC 12 Office Development.  A sequential approach will be followed in relation to relevant uses to protect the vitality of these Centres.

43Planning Policy Wales, Edition 10 and TAN 23: Economic Development

Policy RC 11: ALTERNATIVE USES AT EMPLOYMENT LOCATIONS –

Development of established industrial and commercial land and premises for non-business uses falling outside of Use Classes B1, B2 and B8 will only be permitted where it can be demonstrated that:

i. The existing use is no longer viable or appropriate at the proposed location;

ii. There is no need to retain the land or premises for its current use, having regard to existing and likely future market demand and the requirement to provide for a range and choice of employment sites;

iii. The proposed new development will have no unacceptable impact on neighbouring existing occupiers or allocated uses; and

iv. There are no sequentially preferable sites available with reference to other policies in this Plan.

Appropriate ancillary facilities, such as cafés or child care facilities, will be supported in established industrial and commercial areas only where the proposal:

a. Is of an appropriate nature and scale to serve just the employment area and is not likely to generate unrelated trips by car;

b. Will not cause any adverse impacts on the overall function of the employment area; and neighbouring commercial and residential properties;

c. Will not be detrimental in terms of highway congestion or safety; and

d. Will not impact upon the vitality or viability of designated Centres.  

2.8.51

This Policy seeks to ensure that existing and permitted industrial and commercial use premises and land (both occupied and vacant) that make a valued contribution to the range and choice of land and premises for future business uses are retained. Such uses perform an important function towards meeting the County’s economic development needs and their re-use and regeneration will be supported to facilitate expansion of existing operations and natural churn within the market for Swansea Local Development Plan operators seeking to replace obsolete stock. 

2.8.52

In some exceptional circumstances there will be a need for flexibility to be applied in considering proposals for a change of use away from employment uses, in the interests of ensuring the best use of redundant land and premises. For example, some sites may no longer be fit for their existing use and have little prospect of being reoccupied or there may be an oversupply in the market. It may no longer be appropriate to continue a particular use due to it being too close to housing or sensitive uses. A site may no longer be readily accessible, or may be beyond viable refurbishment or upgrading. In terms of the balance of demand and supply there may no longer be a need to safeguard the site and other regeneration priorities may override economic considerations, such as housing need. Proposals will need to demonstrate that they are compatible with neighbouring uses and do not unacceptably affect amenity. Any proposal for a change to Class B Uses must satisfy all of the criteria.

2.8.53

The developer will be required to demonstrate that employment uses are no longer viable or appropriate in that location. The type of evidence required will vary depending on the use and circumstances but may include details of why the land/premises is no longer in use evidence to show that reasonable efforts have been made to market it for at least 12 months for sale or lease for its existing use; and information to show that the advertised rental and lease terms have been reasonable considering the local market conditions and property condition.

2.8.54

For development proposals involving a change of use which under other Plan policies may be better suited in a centre, it will need to be demonstrated that there is not a sequentially more appropriate site for the proposal. The Council recognises that for certain development proposals, due to the size of premises required, it may be appropriate to allow flexibility subject to the other policy criteria being met.

2.8.55

The Policy seeks to facilitate the provision of complementary leisure, café and childcare facilities to reduce travel demand from employees based in established employment areas who want to access such facilities. Proposals for ancillary uses that are considered likely to generate inappropriate additional levels of traffic, or exacerbate existing traffic problems, as a result of attracting significant new visitors will not be permitted. New employment developments should consider the need for such facilities as part of the overall design of the scheme.

Policy RC 12: OFFICE DEVELOPMENT –

Proposals for significant new office development, in excess of 200 square metres gross floor area, must in the first instance assess the availability and suitability of potential sites within the Swansea Central Area, which is the preferred location for office development.

Significant office uses will not be permitted outside the Swansea Central Area unless it can be justified that:

i. The development is not best located in the Swansea Central Area, or there are no suitable sites or premises available to accommodate the proposals;

ii. The development is linked to an existing use at the proposed location, and there is a specific requirement to co-locate the proposed office having regard to the complementary use;

iii. There is no need to preserve the site for its existing use, having regard to the need to retain an employment landbank;

iv. The development would not have any significant adverse effect on the amenity of surrounding uses; and

v. The site is highly accessible by public transport and Active Travel.

The alternative use of offices within the Swansea Central Area will only be permitted where the developer can demonstrate that there is no need to retain the site or premises for office use having regard to existing supply and the requirement to provide a range and choice of sites for such use to meet existing and likely future demand.

2.8.56

The Central Area sequential test outlined in the Policy will not be applied to proposals of 200 sq m or under gross floor area in recognition that such proposals may be appropriate in sustainable locations, such as District Centres, and they will be considered on their merits.

2.8.57

The Swansea Central Area is the sequentially preferable site for office development given the transformative ability of such uses to deliver a greater critical mass of facilities and attractions within the Central Area to enhance its vibrancy and viability. There is a lack of available, high quality office accommodation, but an oversupply of substandard offices, and therefore proposals should in particular seek to provide, and maintain, high quality space attractive to potential investors. Alternative use of offices within the Central Area will only be permitted where the developer can demonstrate there is no need to retain the site for office use. The type of evidence required will vary depending on the circumstances but may include details of why the land/premises is no longer in use; evidence to show that reasonable efforts have been made to market it for sale or lease for its existing use for at least 12 months; and information to show that the advertised rental and lease terms have been reasonable considering the local market conditions and property condition.

2.8.58

Proposals at out-of-centre locations will not be permitted where they would pose a threat to the vitality and viability of the Swansea Central Area.

Any proposal for significant out-of-centre office development should demonstrate it is fulfilling a specific requirement for accommodation at that location that is not best provided for within the Central Area, having regard to the unique characteristics of the proposed site and scheme such as whether the principle of office uses has been approved in principle in any established masterplan.

Policy RC 13: SWANSEA ENTERPRISE PARK –

Within the Swansea Enterprise Park proposals for new or replacement retail floor space will only be permitted within Retail Park areas defined on the Proposals Map.

Proposals for retail development within the defined Retail Park areas will be restricted to the sale of bulky goods and/or items that do not pose a threat to the vitality, attractiveness and viability of the Swansea Central Area Retail Core and District Centres.

Development proposals for alternative uses at existing retail sites and premises within the Swansea Enterprise Park, including residential and appropriate informal recreation, leisure and commercial (nonretail) uses, will be supported subject to:

  1. The proposal having no material adverse impact on the vitality and viability of the Swansea Central Area Retail Centre and District Centres;
  2. The design and siting allowing for good integration with existing communities;
  3. The site being accessible by walking, cycling and public transport;
  4. The provision of appropriate flood risk resilience measures as part of the development and no unacceptable risks to flooding arising;
  5. No significant adverse effects arising from contaminated land, ground conditions or existing bad neighbour uses.

Sustainable recreation activities at Fendrod and Pluck Lakes will only be permitted where they are of a nature, scale and design that respect the landscape, natural heritage and environmental amenity of the area.

2.8.59

Following the designation of part of the Lower Swansea Valley as an Enterprise Zone in the early 1980’s, this extensive area of brownfield land developed rapidly for a range of uses including, office, hotel, manufacturing, showrooms, storage and retail warehousing. The area ceased to be an Enterprise Zone in 1991 and has since been known as Swansea Enterprise Park. It covers an area bounded to the south by the Swansea to London railway line and to the north by the Swansea Vale Business Park. Its eastern boundary extends up to the edge of the residential areas of Llansamlet, while the western boundary is formed by the River Tawe with the exception of the Plasmarl Industrial Estate which is included within the Enterprise Park.

2.8.60

Swansea’s Central Area Retail Centre has suffered significantly as a cumulative result of development that has become established in out-of-centre Swansea Local Development Plan locations such as this, particularly in terms of unrestricted Class A1 retail. To prevent the further proliferation of retail or leisure uses which could undermine the future success and viability of other Centres, this Policy aims to more closely define and consolidate the extent of the Enterprise Park Retail Park and seeks to restrict uses within the Retail Park to bulky goods retailing.  

2.8.61

The Enterprise Park remains an important area for employment and commercial activity and has a significant role in terms of informal recreation associated with the area of the Fendrod Lake, Riverside Path NCN route 43 and wider linkages with adjacent communities. 

2.8.62

Future redevelopment and regeneration of parts of the Enterprise Park could present opportunities for the broader diversification of the role and function of the area. This could include opportunities for residential development or for informal leisure.

2.8.63

Proposals must have regard to the designation of Fendrod Lake as being part of a Quiet Area.

2.8.64

Large parts of the Enterprise Park area are at risk of flooding, and future redevelopment proposals will need to have regard to the risks of flooding and the need for flood resilience in design. Managed retreat which incorporates habitat and biodiversity enhancement will be supported where development is not viable as a result of unacceptable risks of flooding.

ECOSYSTEM AND RESILIENCE

2.9

Policy ER 1: CLIMATE CHANGE –

To mitigate against the effects of climate change, adapt to its impacts, and to ensure resilience, development proposals should take into account:

i. Reducing carbon emissions;

ii. Protecting and increasing carbon sinks;

iii. Adapting to the implications of climate change at both a strategic and detailed design level;

iv. Promoting energy and resource efficiency and increasing the supply of renewable and low carbon energy;

v. Avoiding unnecessary flood risk by assessing the implications of development proposals within areas susceptible to flooding and preventing development that unacceptably increases risk,

and

vi. Maintaining ecological resilience. 

2.9.1

A core function of the Plan is to ensure that all development in the County is sustainable, taking full account of the implications of reducing resource use and addressing climate change. This Strategic Policy provides a framework for sustainable growth by promoting development that mitigates the causes of climate change and which is able to adapt to its likely effects. This long-term approach is part of the Council’s commitment to realise the economic, environmental and social objectives set out in the Plan’s Vision.  

2.9.2

In the first instance, a reduction in carbon emissions will be achieved by means of controlling the energy demand associated with development through maximising energy efficiency. Secondly, sustainable sources of energy should be incorporated, without reliance on fossil fuels.

2.9.3

Carbon sinks act as a means of off-setting carbon emissions by natural means. Trees and soils act as substantial reservoirs of carbon, sequestering or trapping atmospheric carbon. Soils accumulate carbon faster under tree cover than other forms of vegetation. This stored carbon will usually be emitted as a greenhouse gas if trees are removed or damaged, or soils removed, covered or disturbed (by compaction or contamination) during the construction process. 

2.9.4

The County’s open spaces, trees and soils play a crucial role in mitigating the effects of climate change at the local level. The Policy promotes that, as far as practicable, trees should be retained and protected, and land kept as functioning vegetated soil open to the fall of organic matter, with new trees and shrubs provided by developers wherever possible. Open vegetated soils absorb rainfall and runoff. Where trees and shrubs cannot be surrounded by open soil, hard surfaces should not be used unless there is an overriding need, and areas that are not needed for pedestrian or vehicle use should be retained for soft landscaping.

2.9.5

Adapting to the implications of climate change will require buildings to be designed such that they which are able to cope with the likely increased temperature ranges, more frequent and severe flooding and increased extreme weather events. Buildings and related infrastructure should be designed to be flexible not only to climatic change, but also to accommodate a variety of uses over their lifetime rather than being suitable for one sole application. Landscape will be a critical issue with trees providing protection both by shading and active cooling. This cooling will be required particularly in the City Centre and District Centres, and where children, older people, and people with mobility impairments gather.

2.9.6

High standards of energy efficiency in new development will be required in accordance with national guidance and as further amplified in relevant Plan policies and supporting guidance. Implementation of this Policy, which promotes incorporation of renewable energy generation, will also reduce emission of aerial pollutants, thereby offsetting increases in aerial emissions arising from implementation of other policies in the Plan. This would contribute to avoiding significant effects upon European Sites.

2.9.7

Avoiding unnecessary flood risk will be achieved by strictly assessing the flood risk implications of development proposals within areas susceptible to tidal or fluvial flooding and preventing development that unacceptably increases risk. Development will only be considered in areas at high risk of flooding where the Council is satisfied that the flood risk location is justified and where technical assessments demonstrate that the consequences of flooding can be satisfactorily managed as set out in TAN 15: Development and Flood Risk.

Policy ER 2: STRATEGIC GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE NETWORK –

Green infrastructure will be provided through the protection and enhancement of existing green spaces that afford valuable ecosystem services.

Development that compromises the integrity of such green spaces, and therefore that of the overall green infrastructure network, will not be permitted.

Development will be required to take opportunities to maintain and enhance the extent, quality and connectivity of the County’s multi-functional green infrastructure network, and where appropriate:

i. Create new interconnected areas of green infrastructure between the proposed site and the existing strategic network;

ii. Fill gaps in the existing network to improve connectivity; and/or

iii. In instances where loss of green infrastructure is unavoidable, provide mitigation and compensation for the lost assets.

2.9.8

Green infrastructure is the network of Swansea Local Development Plan multifunctional green (and blue/water) spaces, corridors and environmental features which surround, thread through, shape and help form settlements and the wider countryside. Many green infrastructure features such as green roofs, SuDS, and green walls can provide benefits beyond their primary functions.

2.9.9

Green infrastructure ecosystem services include:

• Mitigating for and adapting to the impacts of climate change;

• Protecting and enhancing biodiversity;

• Opportunities for contact with nature;

• Providing cycleways, canals, bridleways and PROWS; 

• Improving health and well-being;

• Encouraging sports, and active and passive recreation;

• Improving townscape, landscape quality and visual amenity;

• Preventing flooding;

• Carbon storage;

• Food production;

• Community cohesion;

• Assisting in economic regeneration.

• Preventing settlement and neighbourhood coalescence.

• Providing opportunities to conserve and enhance historic assets and increasing levels of interpretation.

• Improving air quality.

2.9.10

The Plan contains other policies relating to Green Infrastructure which include policies relating to the protection of green spaces providing particular ecosystem services. These include policies PS 2 Placemaking and Place Management, SI 5 Protection of Open Space, SI 6 Protection of New Open Space, ER 1 – ER 11 Ecosystem Resilience, T 2 Active Travel, RP 2 Noise Pollution, RP 3 Air and Light Polution, RP 4 Water Pollution and the Protection of Water Resources and RP 5 Avoidance of Flood Risk. 

2.9.11

The Plan does not seek to apply a designation to all areas that are considered to provide valuable ecosystem services. Therefore, some important green spaces within the County will be afforded protection solely through this policy. Such areas may include both private and publicly owned green space of amenity value, and critically in terms of placemaking, urban green spaces that serve to preserve the separate identity of individual neighbourhoods within large settlements. This policy seeks to protect such green spaces, where the value of the specific site, in terms of ecosystem service provision and its contribution to the Green Infrastructure Network, can be adequately demonstrated. A prime example of a valuable green space, that is afforded protection under this policy, is in the centre of the urban settlement of Bishopston. This green space area is privately owned agricultural and horticultural land that is likely to be of limited ecological value. However, this undeveloped land is of amenity value and plays an important role in preserving the individual identities of separate neighbourhoods within Bishopston. It is therefore of value in terms of ecosystem service provision and should not be compromised with development.

2.9.12

The County supports a wealth of green infrastructure assets that together comprise the strategic network, which is illustrated, in a simplistic form in Appendix 9. Green infrastructure should be regarded as a single resource to be safeguarded, enhanced and managed to deliver a wide range of environmental, economic and quality of life benefits for the community. To this end development proposals will be expected to conserve and/or enhance existing green infrastructure. Such schemes will be of an appropriate size, type and standard to ensure no fragmentation or loss of connectivity. In some instances it may be necessary to create new green infrastructure and create connections to the existing Green Infrastructure Network. The SDAs described in Policy SD 1 provide significant opportunities in this regard given their strategic nature and scale.

2.9.13

Development proposals should be designed, and will be assessed, to take into account all simultaneously occurring ecosystem services. For example, an urban greenspace may provide a space for children to play, but may also provide important ecological habitat and contribute to urban drainage and flood management. 

2.9.14

Assessing ecosystem services will be assisted by the forthcoming Swansea Green Infrastructure Strategy, elements of which will be developed into SPG. 

2.9.15

Detailed policies on Allotments, Common Land, Swansea Local Development Plan and Town and Village Greens are not set out in the Plan they are adequately covered by existing legislation and National Planning Policy and Guidance44

44 Planning Policy Wales Edition 10, Allotment Act 1908, 1922, 1925, 1950. WG Guidance for Traditional Allotments and Community Led Gardening Projects 2016. Commons Act 2006. Commons Registration: Act 1965. Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000. The Town and Village Greens (Landowner Statement) (Wales) (No.2) Regulations 2018.

Policy ER 3: GREEN WEDGES –

Green Wedges are allocated between, or within, the following settlements:

i. Birchgrove and Glais (Click to view Site)

ii. Bishopston and Newton (Click to view Site)

iii. Dunvant and Three Crosses  (Click to view Site)

iv. Gowerton/Waunarlwydd and Dunvant  (Click to view Site)

v. Penclawdd and Blue Anchor  (Click to view Site)

vi. Penllergaer and Pontlliw  (Click to view Site)

vii Penllergaer/Kingsbridge and Gowerton/Waunarlwydd/Fforestfach  (Click to view Site)

viii. Penyrheol and Grovesend  (Click to view Site)

Within the designated Green Wedge areas development will only be permitted if it maintains the openness and character of the land, unless the development is for acceptable purposes, as outlined in national policy relating to Green Wedge designations. 

2.9.16

Green Wedge designations are identified only on those parts of the countryside that are considered to act as buffers between settlements to prevent settlement coalescence, in areas under pressure for development. The boundaries are carefully set to ensure that only those areas that require extra protection to prevent settlement coalescence are included. They work in conjunction with the settlement boundaries to achieve all the purposes for Green Wedge designations required by national policy namely, to strategically manage built form and settlement edges, assist in safeguarding the countryside from encroachment, protect the setting for the urban area and assist in urban regeneration by encouraging the reuse of derelict and other urban land.

2.9.17

Whilst there are other policies in the Plan to control development in the countryside, it is considered important to give extra protection to the Green Wedge designated areas to safeguard the openness of the land. Openness is an absence of built form, regardless of how inconspicuous or well screened a development is in the countryside. Protecting openness will ensure that the Green Wedge areas remain effective at preventing settlement coalescence. 

2.9.18

Planning Policy Wales45 provides specific guidance on the consideration of planning applications within Green Wedge designated areas. It emphasises the importance of maintaining the openness of the land, provides a presumption against development inappropriate to the purposes of the Green Wedge designation and outlines the very exceptional circumstances when development could be acceptable. These include development for the following purposes:

• Justified rural enterprise needs;

• Essential facilities for outdoor sport and outdoor recreation, cemeteries, and other uses of land which maintain the openness of the Green Wedge and which do not conflict with the purpose of including land within it;

• Limited extension, alteration or replacement of existing dwellings;

• Limited infilling (in those settlements and other development sites which have been identified for limited infilling in the development plan) and affordable housing for local needs under development plan policies;

or

• Small scale diversification within farm complexes where this is run as part of the farm business.

In order to be acceptable, extension to or replacement of an existing dwelling in a Green Wedge should be of an appropriate scale, so as not to have a significant adverse effect on the openness of the land. ‘Other uses of land and forms of development’ that may be acceptable may include mineral extraction, engineering operations or local transport infrastructure.

 45 Planning Policy Wales Edition 8 4.8.14 – 4.8.18

2.9.19

When located in the Green Wedge, elements of many renewable energy projects will compromise the openness of the land and will be regarded as inappropriate. In order for renewable energy projects to be acceptable in the Green Wedge designated areas developers will need to demonstrate very special circumstances, such as greater benefits associated with increased energy from renewable sources. In order to be acceptable, these must outweigh the importance of maintaining the openness of the Green Wedge designated land and justify why such projects cannot be located in a less sensitive location. The reversible nature of some forms of renewable energy does not affect the impact of the proposal on the openness of the land whilst it is in place. The permanence of a renewable energy scheme will have no bearing on the inappropriateness or otherwise of the proposed development. 

2.9.20

The Green Wedge designated areas are strategically important elements of the County’s Geen Infrastructure Network. In addition to the crucial role they play in preventing settlement coalescence these areas are multifunctional and provide wide ranging ecosystem services. In particular , the Green Wedge designated between Penllergaer/Kingsbridge and Gowerton/ Waunarlwydd/Fforestfach is recognised as supporting locally rare and distinctive lowland landscape, that has the desired effect of separating the surrounding settlements. On this basis the land has also been designated a Special Landscape Area (SLA ), a designation that will protect and enhance the landscape character of the area and complement its corresponding role as a Green Wedge. This area is also a vital link in the strategic ecological corridor that connects Gower to the wider countryside. In recognition of the additional benefits afforded by the Green Belt and Green Wedge designated areas, biodiversity, landscape, climate change mitigation and informal recreation enhancement measures will be encouraged as appropriate.

Policy ER 4 – GOWER AREA OF OUTSTANDING NATURAL BEAUTY (AONB)

Within the AONB, development must have regard to the purpose of the designation to conserve and enhance the natural beauty of the area. In assessing the likely impact of development proposals on the natural beauty of the AONB, cumulative impact will also be taken into consideration.
Development must:
  1. Not have a significant adverse impact on the natural assets of the AONB or the resources and ecosystem services on which the local economy and well-being of the area depends;
  2. Contribute to the social and economic well-being of the local community;
  3. Be of a scale, form, design, density and intensity of use that is compatible with the character of the AONB; 
  4. Be designed to an appropriately high standard in order to integrate with the existing landscape and where feasible enhance the landscape quality; and
  5. Demonstrate how it contributes to the conservation and enhancement of the natural beauty of the AONB.
Development proposals that are outside, but closely interlinked with the AONB must not have an unacceptable detrimental impact on the natural beauty of the AONB.
2.9.21

The AONB designation is shown on the Constraints and Issues Map. It is a landscape of national importance that is protected by statute46 for the purpose of conserving and enhancing its natural beauty. This Policy seeks to conserve and enhance the natural beauty of the AONB, whilst accommodating the sustainable development needs of the local community and visitors to the area. Such development may include: affordable Housing for Local Needs; development for local services such as village shops, small scale leisure facilities and cultural buildings; and development that contributes to the local economy, including necessary agricultural buildings, sustainable tourism facilities and low key commercial operations. This approach is in line with the requirements of National Planning Policy and Guidance47

46 National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949 . Coutryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 ( CROW act)

47 Planning Policy Wales, Edition 10

2.9.22

The natural assets of the AONB provide an opportunity for economic growth and are important for well-being. Such benefits must not be compromised by new development that fails to safeguard or enhance the natural assets and ecosystemservices of the AONB. The Gower AONB supports severale Key Villages, which provide the most sustainable locations for development to  meet social and economic needs, including for affordablehousing to meet local needs. Policy CV 1 Key Villages provides specific guidance on key village development. In the AONB, key village development must conserve and enhance the local distinctiveness and natural beauty of the AONB landscape character and village settings. All development proposed within the AONB will be subject to a rigorous examination of its sustainability with an emphasis on potential environmental implications.  

2.9.23

Due to the sensitive environment of the AONB new development must respect the natural beauty of the area, relate well to the character of the local landscape and be designed to a high standard. The Gower AONB Design Guide SPG provides specific guidance on achieving a high standard of building and landscape design.

2.9.24

The CROW Act48 describes the natural beauty of an area with reference to the conservation of its flora, fauna and geological and physiographical features, and these will be applied in assessing development proposals affecting the AONB. In essence, natural beauty is the interrelationship of landscape, landform, habitats and wildlife. Its character is the result of natural and/or human factors. In combination these elements create a natural beauty that has an ability to provide enjoyment, inspiration and improve quality of life.

48 Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 (Section 92 (2)

2.9.25

The cumulative effect of development will be taken into account in determining whether a development proposal would have an adverse effect on the natural beauty of the AONB. Further information relating to the landscape of the AONB is provided in the Gower Landscape Character Assessment (2013), Gower Landscape Sensitivity and Capacity Study for Caravan and Camping Sites (LSCS) (2014) and Swansea Local Seascape Character Assessment (2017). These will form part of guidance to be adopted as SPG that will assist applicants and be used to inform relevant planning decisions relating to Gower.

2.9.26

In seeking to enhance the character and natural beauty of the landscape suitable enhancement measures and management plans will be requested, as appropriate. Conservation, enhancement and subsequent management of important features within the AONB may be required in relation to some developments. Such enhancement however cannot be used to justify a development that would otherwise be unacceptable.

2.9.27

National Planning Policy and Guidance49 provides Swansea Local Development Plan guidance on major development in the AONB. 

49 Planning Policy Waler Edition 10

2.9.28

Management of the AONB is co-ordinated through the Gower Management Plan, elements of which will be developed into SPG. In order to preserve and enhance the appearance of the AONB, guidance has been produced for specific issues of concern relating to advertisements and lighting. These will also form SPG.

2.9.29

A review of national landscapes of Wales has positioned national landscapes, including the AONB, as leading and innovative places for capturing and integrating the environmental, economic, and well-being and sustainability goals, and installing national landscapes as regional hubs for sustainable rural development and the providers of ecosystem services.  The Welsh Government has set out its priorities for AONBs and National Parks in Wales50.  These priorities will enable a more positive and proactive approach to be taken within the AONB to ensure that the most innovative sustainable developments, within their environmental limits, are implemented.  For example, developing and stimulating more local enterprise partnerships, sustainable affordable housing, green energy/green growth ventures and exploring the health and tourism benefits of the AONB.  This policy, and others in the Plan which relate to the AONB, will be reviewed as part of the Plan monitoring process to consider the implementation of these priorities for national landscapes.

50 Valued and Resilient: The Welsh Government’s Priorities for Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and National Parks. Welsh Government (2018)

Policy ER 5: LANDSCAPE PROTECTION –

Development will not be permitted that would have a significant adverse effect on the character and quality of the landscape and setting of the County. Priority will be given to protecting enhancing and managing the character and quality of the following Special Landscape Areas (SLAs), as shown on the Proposals Map and listed below:

i. Mawr Uplands (Click to view Site)

ii. Lower Loughor Valley and Estuary and Southern part of the Burry Inlet (Click to view Site) ;

and

iii. North East Gower and Cockett Valley  (Click to view Site)

iv. Garngoch and Lower Afon Llan Valley  (Click to view Site)

Within SLAs, development will only be permitted where there is no significant adverse impact, including cumulative impact, on landscape.

The development should aim to protect and enhance the features for which the SLA has been designated.

Where appropriate, a landscape impact assessment will be required in order to consider the impact of the development on the designated area.

I n exceptional circumstances, where development is necessary and could result in a significant landscape impact, a landscaping scheme will also be required and appropriate mitigation and enhancement measures should be provided. 

2.9.30

The aim of the Policy is to ensure that the character and quality of the County’s landscapes is protected from inappropriate development. Landscape management, enhancement and the creation of key landscape features is encouraged wherever possible, and may be required. The unique landscape quality of the Gower AONB is protected under Policy ER 4 Gower AONB. This Policy relates to areas outside the AONB and designates areas of high landscape importance within the County, for increased landscape protection. The Policy is not intended to unduly restrict acceptable development in the countryside but to ensure that such development is compatible with the surrounding landscape. In some instances, in order to fully assess the impact on the County’s landscape, a Landscape Impact Assessments (LIAs)may be required. 

2.9.31

Special Landscape Areas (SLAs) are identified following a formal assessment of the landscape qualities of the County. Their designation utilises the NRW Guidance Note in applying the results from the LANDMAP51 data to identify landscapes of significant local importance, as recommended in National Planning Policy and Guidance.

57 LANDMAP Guidance note 1: LANDMAP and Special Areas 2017 (and earlier versions)

2.9.32

The SLA assessment studies establish the key features for each SLA, referred to in the policy, and will provides SPG.

2.9.33

In order to be acceptable, wherever possible, development within a SLA should retain and enhance the positive attributes of its landscape and seek to remove or mitigate any negative influences. In order to achieve this the design, scale and location of development should respect the special landscape context. In particular, design should reflect the building traditions of the locality in its form, materials and details and aim to assimilate the development into the wider landscape

2.9.34

For most development to integrate successfully into its surroundings implementation of a landscaping scheme will be required. In the exceptional circumstances where development of an incompatible design or scale or in a location not respecting of the landscape context is necessary and acceptable, suitable mitigation measures will be required. 

2.9.35

In order to fully assess the impact on the landscape, significant development proposals within a SLA should be accompanied by a landscape impact assessment which takes into account the effect of the development, including the cumulative impact where appropriate, on the key landscape features, landscape character and qualities and set out proposals to mitigate any adverse effects and enhance positive attributes.  

2.9.36

The LIA must follow the LANDMAP approach and include the landscape baseline information from all five LANDMAP layers. It should focus on the relevant aspect areas, their descriptions and evaluations. Where landscaping schemes are required they should generally be implemented prior to part or the entire site coming into beneficial use. 

2.9.37

The Mawr Uplands SLA overlaps with TAN 8 Strategic Search Area (2005) E (Pontardawe). At this location, the requirement to meet national targets for renewable energy provision outweighs the importance of safeguarding the landscape of local significance. It is not the intention of the coinciding SLA designation to preclude strategic scale wind energy generation development in the SSA. The purpose of the SLA designation within the SSA is to inform the application of Policy EU 1 Renewable and Low Carbon Energy Development to ensure that wind turbines and related development, are positioned with minimum intrusion on the locally important landscape. In the long term, the SLA designation will also serve to protect the landscape from potentially damaging permanent development to enable the full reinstatement of the special landscape quality, following the decommissioning of any wind energy generation development.

Policy ER 6: DESIGNATED SITES OF ECOLOGICAL IMPORTANCE –

Development will not be permitted that would result in a likely significant adverse effect on the integrity of sites of international or national nature conservation importance, except in the circumstances specified in relevant legislation.

Development that would adversely affect locally designated sites of nature conservation importance should maintain and enhance the nature conservation interest of the site.

Where this cannot be achieved development will only be permitted where it can be demonstrated that:

i. The need for the development outweighs the need to protect the site for nature conservation purposes;

ii. There is no satisfactory alternative location for the development that avoids nature conservation impacts;

and

iii. Any unacceptable harm is kept to a minimum by effective avoidance measures and mitigation,

or where this is not feasible compensatory measures must be put in place to ensure that there is no overall reduction in the nature conservation value of the area.

2.9.38

This Policy seeks to ensure that the nature conservation value of designated sites is protected from harmful development and that the Council fulfils its obligation to maintain and enhance biodiversity and ecosystem resilience. A Biodiversity and Development SPG will be produced to provide further information on how biodiversity should be conserved and enhanced through development. The Policy will also play a significant role in achieving the Plan’s Vision for Swansea as a County that ‘capitalises on the distinctive relationship between its vibrant urban areas and outstanding rural and coastal environments’ and ‘conserves its unique natural heritage’. In addition, protection of designated sites will contribute to climate change resilience.

2.9.39

All designated sites are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map and listed in Appendix 7.

2.9.40

National Planning Policy and Guidance52 provides for the protection of designated sites and sets a clear context for the relevant policy approach for their protection. Those of international and national importance are afforded more protection than those of local importance.

52 Planning Policy Wales and TAN 5

2.9.41

Sites of international importance are EU designated Special Protection Areas (SPAs) and Special Areas of Conservation (SACs), known collectively as Natura 2000 sites, and UN designated Ramsar sites. As a matter of national policy Ramsar Sites are afforded the same policy protection as the Natura 2000 sites. Natura 2000 sites are given protection under European Directives53 that have been transposed into UK law through the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017 (as amended) (Habitats Regulations). Only development which demonstrates compliance with the Habitats Regulations will be permitted. In considering development proposals that affect sites of international importance full account must be taken of the core management plans prepared for each site.

53 Birds Directive 1979 (79/409/EEC), Habitats Directive 1992 (92/43/EEC)

2.9.42

Sites of national importance are National Nature Reserves (NNRs) and Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs). These are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, as amended by the Countryside and Rights of Way (CROW) Act 2000, the Natural Environment and Rural Communities (NERC) Act 2006 and the Environment (Wales) Act 2016.

2.9.43

Sites recognised for their local nature conservation value are Local Nature Reserves (LNRs), and Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINCs). SINCs have been identified on the basis of guidelines outlined in national guidance54 and taking account of local factors. All such designations are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map.

54 http://www.biodiversitywales.org.uk/Planning 

2.9.44

Criteria for assessing sites of international and national importance are based on standards set out in the relevant legislation (detailed above) and expanded upon in National Planning Policy and Guidance55 . Sites of national importance will be treated in a similar way to international sites utilising the criteria outlined in the Policy. These highly sensitive sites may be affected by development on, adjacent to, or some distance away from them.

55 Planning Policy Wales Edition 10 and TAN 5: Nature Conservation and Planning.

2.9.45

Where development is proposed which may have an adverse effect on a site of international and national importance, or where nature conservation interests of locally important sites are likely to be disturbed or harmed by proposed development, developers will be expected to provide an ecological survey that includes an assessment of the likely impact of the proposal on the protected site and, where necessary, make appropriate provision for its safeguarding. In assessing the potential harm the Council will consider:

• The individual and cumulative effects which will include impacts during construction;

• The role of the site in the ecological connectivity network; and

• Whether effective mitigation and/or compensation measures have been provided. 

Policy ER 7: UNDEVELOPED COAST –

Along the undeveloped coast priority is placed on the protection and enhancement of the landscape, seascape, biodiversity and historic environment. Development will only be permitted for necessary coastal management schemes and proposals should take full account of any management plans and schemes for protected areas.

Any coastal management schemes should protect, enhance and where appropriate create walking linkages to the All Wales Coast Path. The provision of additional Active Travel routes to link communities and existing paths to the Coast Path will be encouraged.

2.9.46

The undeveloped coast extends west from Mumbles Head encompassing Gower and the Loughor Estuary. It is one of the County’s greatest assets and its unique synergy with the urban area provides the County with a distinctive and enviable character. The undeveloped coast is made up of the area of land and adjacent sea that are considered to be mutually dependant. Excluded are the developed areas of established visitor and recreation destinations identified in Policy TR 2 Developed Coast and Waterfront.

2.9.47

Most of the County’s undeveloped coast is protected by a host of existing designations including the Gower AONB, Gower Heritage Coast, Limestone Coast of South West SAC, Carmarthen Bay and Estuaries European Marine Site, SAC, SPAs, Ramsar, and Oxwich and Whiteford NNRs. The route of the All Wales Coastal Path passes through the undeveloped coast, the natural beauty of which forms part of its scenic attraction. All designations are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map and proposals should take full account of any management plans or schemes for these protected areas. The inner boundary of the coastal zone is difficult to spatially identify and is therefore not shown on the Proposals Map. Each development proposal at or within the vicinity of Gower, Mumbles Head and the Loughor Estuary will be assessed on its merits to determine whether it can reasonably be considered that the site contributes and is related to a coastal environment and is therefore part of the coastal zone. The Carmarthen Bay, Gower and Swansea Bay Seascape and Loughor Estuary, Gower and Swansea Bay Landscape Character Assessments, which will form SPG to the Plan, will assist in this assessment. 

2.9.48

The purpose of this Policy is to safeguard the undeveloped coast from inappropriate development. It works in conjunction with National Planning Policy and Guidance56 and Policy TR 2 Developed Coast and Waterfront to enable the social and economic benefits of an unspoilt coast to be realised whilst allowing for necessary coastal management schemes/defence work and acceptable improvements to existing tourism and recreation facilities, as outlined in Policy TR 2. 

56 Planning Policy Wales, Edition 10 and TAN 14: Costal Planning

2.9.49

Appropriate coastal management schemes are likely to be those that:

• Are required for public safety;

• Would not contribute to, or transfer the risk of flooding, coastal or river erosion, coastal inundation or coastal squeeze;

• Protect the socio-economic interests of the community;

• Provide recreation and leisure facilities, where appropriate;

• Provide or maintain public access, as appropriate;

• Do not reduce the biodiversity value of the site. 

2.9.50

Any proposed coastal scheme should accord with Lavernock Point to St Ann’s Head Shoreline Management Plan (SMP2) that covers the County’s coastline57. It sets out the specific coastal issues that exist and aims to identify sustainable coastal management options, taking into account the influences and needs of both the natural environment and the human and built environment. The acceptability of coastal management schemes will be determined on the basis of the SMP2, which includes information on the existing defence policy within the locality and recommends the policy approach to adopt in the future. It also identifies areas where the provision of new defence works might be beneficial and identifies areas not suitable for development.

57  South Wales SMP - SMP, Lavernock Point to St Ann’s Head Shoreline Management Plan (SMP2)

2.9.51

It is essential that coastal management schemes work with and not against the natural physical processes and should not transfer the risk to other areas of the coastline. There should be minimum disturbance to the interrelationships which exist within the natural processes of the coastal cell or coastline unit within which sediment movement is self-contained.

2.9.52

It is recognised that in certain circumstances a coastal management scheme may result in an increase in flooding or coastal/river erosion as there is significant biodiversity benefits in allowing this. In these instances it is for the developer to demonstrate why such a scheme is beneficial and will not undermine public safety.

2.9.53

Coastal squeeze is the effect when coastal habitats such as saltmarsh are lost between a fixed landward boundary and rising sea levels and increased storminess. Development on the coast, including coastal defences such as the sea wall at Cwm Ivy, effectively fixes the coastline, so that when sea level rise occurs, these usually adaptable habitats are unable to migrate landwards due to the landform. This effectively ‘squeezes’ the habitat resulting in a loss of quality and/or quantity of these important habitats and biodiversity associated with it, such as shore birds. At Cwm Ivy the coastal squeeze has been successfully compensated for through a SMP managed retreat scheme. This allows for the previously reclaimed land to once again flood by the sea and for salt marsh habitat to be reinstated.  

2.9.54

The Gower Landscape Character Assessment and forthcoming Loughor Estuary, Gower and Swansea Bay Seascape Character Assessment, based on the regional Carmarthen Bay, Gower and Swansea Bay Seascape Character Assessment will provide further information on the landscape and seascape quality of the undeveloped coast and will be adopted as SPG. The Carmarthen Bay, Gower and Swansea Bay Seascape Character Assessment has been informed by the Welsh National Marine Plan that is being developed to optimise opportunities for the sustainable development of the sea around Wales. These documents will be a material consideration in assessing the impact of proposed development on the undeveloped coast

2.9.55

Meaningful connections will be sought to the All Wales Coast Path as outlined in Policy T 2 Active Travel. Such connections must be appropriate to the context of the undeveloped coast and as required by the policy, protect and enhance the landscape; seascape; biodiversity and historic environment.

Policy ER 8: HABITATS AND SPECIES –

Development proposals that would have a significant adverse effect on the resilience of protected habitats and species will only be permitted where:

i. The need for development outweighs the nature conservation importance of the site;

ii. The developer demonstrates that there is no satisfactory alternative location for the development which avoids nature conservation impacts;

iii. Any unavoidable harm is minimised by effective mitigation to ensure that there is no reduction in the overall nature conservation value of the area.

Where this is not feasible, compensation measures designed to conserve, enhance, manage and, where appropriate, restore natural habitats and species must be provided. 

2.9.56

Development proposals should aim to minimise detrimental impacts on protected habitats and species and ecosystem resilience. This policy should be implemented in conjunction with ER 6 and ER 9 to ensure no net loss in overall biodiversity as a result of development and where possible there should be biodiversity gains.

2.9.57

Protected habitats and species are those protected under European and UK legislation, as identified in TAN 5 Nature Cnservation and Planning (2009). The legislation includes the Habitats Directive, Birds Directive, Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, Environment (Wales) Act 2016. Protected habitat and species include priority habitats and species that are protected in Local Biodiversity Action Plans and emerging Nature Recovery Plans. A biodiversity and development SPG will be produced to provide further information on how biodiversity should be conserved and enhanced through development.

2.9.58

Factors to be taken into consideration in assessing the significant adverse effect development proposals are likely to have on habitats and species are:

• The current distribution and status of the protected habitat or species within the County;

• All likely effects, including cumulative effects and impacts during construction;

• The role of the habitats as connectivity pathways;

and

• Whether effective mitigation and/or compensatory measures have been provided.

• Maintaining and enhancing ecosystem resilience.

2.9.59

Where habitats and species are likely to be disturbed or harmed, development proposals will be assessed in accordance with National Planning Policy and Guidance58. Developers will be expected to provide: an ecological survey; an assessment of the likely impact of the proposal on the protected species/habitats; and, where necessary, make appropriate provision for their safeguarding, mitigation and/or compensatory measures. In addition measures to enhance biodiversity, such as through habitat creation, will be expected.

58 Planning Policy Wales, Edition 10 and TAN 5: Nature Conservation and Planning 

2.9.60

Invasive Non-Native Species are alien animals, plants or other organisms that have the ability to spread, causing damage to the environment, the economy, our health and the way we live. They are addressed by existing legislation. If invasive nonnative species are present in and around a development site appropriate action should be taken to control or remove them prior to the commencement of any approved development. Where planning permission is granted it will be subject to appropriate planning conditions and obligations to secure control, monitoring, mitigation, compensation and management.

Policy ER 9: ECOLOGICAL NETWORKS AND FEATURES OF IMPORTANCE FOR BIODIVERSITY –

Development proposals will be expected to maintain, protect and enhance ecological networks and features of importance for biodiversity.

Particular importance will be given to maintaining and enhancing the connectivity of ecological networks which enable the dispersal and functioning of protected and priority species.

Development proposals that could result in an adverse effect on the connectivity of ecological networks and features of importance for biodiversity will only be permitted where:

i. The need for the development outweighs the nature conservation value of the site;

ii. It can be demonstrated that there is no satisfactory alternative location for the development;

iii. A functional connected element of the natural resource is retained as part of the design of the development; and

iv. Compensatory provision will be made of comparable or greater ecological value to that lost as a result of the development. 

2.9.61

There are a significant number of ecological habitats and features within the County, in addition to those that are legally protected, that lie outside the designated areas and make a significant contribution to the overall biodiversity resource.  These include linear wildlife corridors such as rivers, hedgerows and cycle tracks; ‘stepping stones’ such as ponds and copses and landscape features such as stone walls, ornamental gardens, ruined buildings and dead trees, that provide valuable habitats and are of importance for wild fauna and flora. 

2.9.62

The wildlife corridors, stepping stones and landscape features are a vital part of the ecological network.  Whilst it is important to protect and enhance biodiversity sites and species of importance dispersed throughout the County this cannot be achieved without protecting and enhancing the intervening habitats and spaces that provide crucial links between the designated sites.  

2.9.63

The protection, management and enhancement of ecological networks is recognised as being particularly important for nature conservation.  Wildlife corridors allow species to move between fragmented habitats, to recolonise areas and to move in response to climate change and development that may have destroyed part of their habitat.  For example, the water vole, which is a priority species will not travel through unvegetated ground.  If its habitat becomes isolated through development and then the colony within this isolated habitat become endangered, for example through disease, it is likely that it will not survive.

2.9.64

The Plan has been informed by an assessment of ecological connectivity across the whole of the County.  This assessment maps the existing ecological connectivity network and also identifies locations where ecological connectivity has the potential to be enhanced.  The latest version of the Swansea Ecological Connectivity Assessment will inform the implementation of this policy.

2.9.65

Providing ecological connectivity is an important ecosystem service of the Green Infrastructurenetwork and its protection and/or enhancement accords with Policy ER 2 Strategic Green Infrastructure Network.

Policy ER 10: GEOLOGICAL AND GEOMORPHOLOGICAL SITES OF VALUE –

Development will not be permitted that would cause significant adverse effect to geological or geomorphological SSSIs.
 
Development that would affect Regionally Important Geological or Geomorphological sites (RIGs) should maintain the geological or geomorphological interests of the site. 
Where this cannot be achieved development will only be permitted where:
 
i.It can be demonstrated that the need for the development outweighs the need to protect the site; and
 
ii.There is no satisfactory alternative location for the development that avoids geological or geomorphological impacts.
 
Where development is permitted any unacceptable harm must be kept to a minimum by effective avoidance measures and mitigation.
 
2.9.66

Designated geological and geomorphological SSSIs are nationally important rocks, earth forms or features.  The regionally important geological or geomorphological sites (RIGs) define the most important places for geology and geomorphology that are not nationally designated.  RIGS59  and potential RIGS60  are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map and listed in Appendix 4.  Work is currently ongoing on the identification of precise boundaries for potential RIGS.

59  South Wales RIGS Audit – British Geological Society 2012
60 Sites of Geological Interest in the Swansea Area, Swansea University, CCS, NRW 2016

Policy ER 11: TREES, HEDGEROWS AND DEVELOPMENT –

Development that would adversely affect trees, woodlands and hedgerows of public amenity or natural/cultural heritage value, or that provide important ecosystem services, will not normally be permitted.
Ancient Woodland, Ancient Woodland Sites, Ancient and Veteran Trees merit specific protection and development will not normally be permitted that would result in:
 
i.Fragmentation or loss of Ancient Woodland; 
 
ii.The loss of an Ancient or Veteran Tree; 
 
iii.Ground damage, loss of understorey or ground disturbance to an area of Ancient Woodland or Ancient or Veteran Tree’s root protection area; 
 
iv.A reduction in the area of other semi natural habitats adjoining Ancient Woodland; 
 
v.Significant alteration to the land use adjoining the Ancient Woodland;  
 
vi.An increase in the likely exposure of Ancient Woodland, Ancient or Veteran Tree to air, water or light pollution from the surrounding area; 
 
vii.Alteration of the hydrology in a way that might impact on Ancient Woodland, Ancient or veteran trees; 
 
viii.Destruction of important c onnecting habitats relating to Ancient Woodland; 
 
ix.Destruction of Plantations on Ancient Woodland Sites (PAWS); and/or
 
x.Development in close proximity to Ancient Woodland and Ancient and veteran trees.
 
Where the Council considers it necessary, planning applications for development proposals on sites containing, or adjacent to, trees will be required to provide: a tree survey; an arboricultural impact assessment; an arboricultural method statement; and/or a tree protection plan. 
 
Where trees are to be replaced a scheme for tree replacement must be agreed prior to the commencement of development, including details of planting and aftercare, must be agreed prior to the commencement of development.
 
 
2.9.67
National Planning Policy and Guidance61 provides for the protection of trees and woodlands. Throughout the County it is estimated that over 50,000 trees are protected by individual/group orders, area orders or woodland orders. This is in addition to trees in conservation areas whilst hedgerows are protected by separate legislation62 .
 
61 Planning Policy Wales, Edition 10 and TAN 10: Tree Preservation Orders
62  Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended),
Town and Country Planning (Trees) Regulations 1999
2.9.68

In recognition of the importance of trees to the County, the Plan seeks to ensure that suitable trees, whether they are protected by legislation or not, are retained and protected on any development site. Further information relating to the protection of trees on development sites is provided in SPG. NRW i-tree Eco assessment provides useful information on the ecosystem services provided by trees. Where appropriate planning conditions or Tree Preservation Orders will be used to protect important trees and woodlands. The Council will pursue appropriate enforcement action against unauthorised works to protected trees.

2.9.69

The circumstances in which further information in support of a planning application will be required are outline in the policy This information must be in accordance with the current British Standard BS5837 and have regard to the long term impact of the proposed development on the trees as they grow and wherever possible seek to avoid future Swansea Local Development Plan conflict, such as that caused by over-hanging branches, shading and dominance. 

2.9.70

Planning Permission will normally only be granted where the trees on the site are fully protected in the long term, or appropriate replacement trees will be planted when the removal of a tree or trees is unavoidable. The removal of trees would only be acceptable where there is no other alternative location for the development; and the need for and benefits from the development, outweighs the importance of the tree or trees. 

2.9.71

Replacement trees will be planted in accordance with British Standard BS8545. Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) will normally be placed on the replacement trees. 

2.9.72

Planning Conditions, Article 4 Directions and/or Planning Obligations will be used to secure any necessary mitigation/compensation/enhancement measures in relation to trees and development proposals. 

2.9.73

New tree or mitigation planting should be designed to achieve maturity and to ensure that there is an ongoing contribution to amenity with negligible negative impacts. New landscape schemes should follow the principles set out in “Trees in the Townscape: A Guide for Decision Makers” and be delivered using guidance in “Trees in Hard Landscapes: A Guide for Delivery”. 

2.9.74

Ancient Woodland is defined as land that has had a continuous woodland cover since accurate maps were first produced. It is a valuable and irreplaceable resource. Having been present in the landscape over some time Ancient Woodland is rich in wildlife and more likely to support protected and priority species and to contain special features of importance for biodiversity. It is also more likely to contain features of historical and archaeological importance. Their rarity and importance means that these areas should be protected. Direct loss of Ancient Woodland must be avoided. A minimum buffer of 15 metres should be provided between ancient woodland and most forms of development63. This is necessary to provide essential root and understorey protection (as required in BS5837:2012) and to protect the important ancient woodland habitat from indirect damage, such as trampling, fly-tipping, encroachment of invasive features and vegetation clearance resulting from the new development. Ideally, the buffer should be planted with woodland edge species or left as natural grass to increase or maintain ecological connectivity and create a transitional habitat i.e. ecotone providing resilience for this sensitive and highly valued habitat. Where possible opportunities should be taken to restore plantations on Ancient Woodland sites to native  tree cover. Plantations on Ancient Woodlands (PAWS) are sites believed to have been continuously wooded for over 400 years, but currently have a canopy cover of at least 50% nonnative conifer tree species. Critically, such areas support ancient woodland soil systems and have the potential to be restored to an ancient woodland habitat. 

63 The Woodland Trust Planner’s Manual for Ancient Woodland and Veteran Trees – Woodland Trust 2017 

2.9.75

All areas of Ancient Woodland known at the time of the Plan’s preparation are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map. However this is only a provisional list and all development sites that support woodland will need to be assessed for Ancient Woodland status. NRW will be consulted on any proposals that may give rise to potentially damaging operations.

2.9.76

An Ancient Tree is one that has passed beyond maturity and is old or aged. A Veteran Tree may not be old but because of its environment or life experiences has developed the valuable features of an Ancient Tree. Ancient and Veteran Trees are of prime importance because of their rarity and function within an ecosystem. Individual Ancient and Veteran trees often have local or national significance, due to their age, size or condition. They are also of importance to sustain a range of nationally and internationally protected species. In order to provide the necessary protection a buffer of 15x the diameter of the stem of ancient and veteran trees when measuring at 1.5m from ground level will be required for most forms of development as endorsed by the Arboricultural Association.64 

64 Ancient and other Veteran Trees: Further Guidance and management’ by D. Lonsdale (2013) 

2.9.77

There is currently no comprehensive inventory of Ancient and Veteran Trees within Wales. The required tree survey in support of development proposals will detail whether a site contains or is adjacent to any trees which could be considered to be Ancient or Veteran.

2.10

COUNTRYSIDE AND VILLAGE DEVELOPMENT

Policy CV 1: KEY VILLAGES –

The following Key Villages are considered suitable for accommodating appropriate small scale development, including new homes, community facilities and sustainable enterprises:

1. Craig-Cefn-Parc (Click to view Site)

2. Felindre  (Click to view Site)

3. Garnswllt  (Click to view Site)

4. Grovesend  (Click to view Site)

5. Horton  (Click to view Site)

6. Knelston  (Click to view Site)

7. Llangennith  (Click to view Site)

8. Llanmadoc  (Click to view Site)

9. Llanrhidian  (Click to view Site)

10. Oxwich  (Click to view Site)

11. Pennard and Southgate  (Click to view Site)

12. Pontlliw  (Click to view Site)

13. Port Eynon  (Click to view Site)

14. Reynoldston  (Click to view Site)

15. Rhossili  (Click to view Site)

16. Scurlage  (Click to view Site)

17. Three Crosses  (Click to view Site)

18. Tircoed  (Click to view Site)

Development at Key Villages must ensure that the proposal:

i. Is located within the defined settlement boundary, as shown on the Proposal Map;

ii. Sympathetically integrates with the surrounding natural and built environment, taking into account the unique rural character of the village and the quality of the surrounding landscape and seascape;

iii. Protects important rural views and vistas;

iv. Does not have a suburbanising effect;

v. Would not result in the loss of natural heritage or valuable green infrastructure, or otherwise harm heritage assets;

and

vi. Utilises previously developed land and/or redundant buildings where possible.  

2.10.1

Outside the main urban area of the County, development should be focussed on delivering appropriate housing, community facilities and sustainable rural enterprises within the settlement boundaries of appropriate villages. The Policy defines ‘Key Villages’, which are considered suitable for accommodating such development at a small scale. These villages have been selected following an assessment of their size, facilities, structure and accessibility. Each Key Village consists of at least 25 but no more than 1000 dwellings and is supported by appropriate complementary facilities such as a school, shop, pub, church, community hall or post office. In addition the selected villages are accessible by  public transport and have a cohesive structure. 

2.10.2

For the purposes of this Policy the designated boundary should be considered synonymous with the development limit. That is, the boundary confirms the development opportunities that can reasonably be incorporated into the existing village without detracting from its character are small scale and subject to retaining important open spaces

2.10.3

In accordance with Policy H 3 Affordable Housing, all proposed housing developments with a capacity to deliver a net gain of 2 or more dwellings within Key Villages in the Gower and Gower Fringe Areas will be required to provide affordable housing for local needs at the rate of 50%.

2.10.4

Outside the settlement boundary, development proposals will be determined against Policy CV 2 Development in the Countryside, Policy CV 3 Replacement Dwellings and Policy CV 4 Conversion of Rural Buildings. 

2.10.5

The character of each settlement will relate to the different building forms, open spaces and street patterns which combine to create a distinctive rural village character. New development should reinforce the existing rural village character and avoid implementing development of a typical suburban form. The Infill and Backland Design Guide SPG provides further guidance on achieving good quality infill development. Proposals at Key Villages that are also Conservation Areas must have particular regard to the need to preserve and enhance buildings and features of historic importance in accordance with Policy HC 2 Preservation and Enhancement of Buildings and Features.

2.10.6

Not every piece of vacant land within the settlement limit will be suitable for development, as some provide valuable green infrastructure that should remain undeveloped in accordance with the priciples set out in Policy ER 2 Strategic Green Infastructure Network. Such areas may include village greens, village commons, play areas and green corridors such as tree belts, streams and PROWS. In addition, particularly for the Key Villages, open spaces or gaps in the built form are often important because they provide a sense of openness, a focus to the settlement or a vital glimpsed view of the surrounding countryside. Important landscape and townscape elements of the key villages, including green infrastructure assets, to be protected, is set out in SPG. The policy requirement to protect important views and vistas emphasises the importance of considering such circumstances in the interests of resisting unacceptable impacts of development on key villages, and does not infer that an individual’s loss of a view would be a material planning consideration. 

2.10.7

The quality of the landscape is linked to its designation with the AONB, SLAs, Historic Landscapes and Conservation Areas demanding particular care. Within the Gower AONB new rural settlement dwellings should contribute positively to their settings and enhance the quality of the landscape. This will be achieved by adhering to the guidance provided by the Gower AONB Design Guide SPG.

2.10.8

National Planning Policy and Guidance56 recognises that local employment opportunities within rural settlements are essential to sustain and improve communities and have a vital role in promoting healthy economic activity. In accordance with National Planning Policy and Guidance and reflecting the Council’s Vision for sustainable economic growth and prosperity, this Policy seeks to allow the development of small-scale sustainable enterprises within the Key Villages. Suitable enterprise development may include restaurants, tea rooms and hotels; craft businesses, art galleries and knowledge intensive businesses services such as engineering, computer and research and development services.

65 Planning Policy Wales, Edition 8 and TAN 6: Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities

Policy CV 2: DEVELOPMENT IN THE COUNTRYSIDE. –

Outside defined settlement boundaries development will be required to ensure that the integrity of the countryside is conserved and enhanced.

There is a presumption against development in the countryside, except where it is for:

  1. The purposes of agriculture, forestry or other rural enterprise;
  2. The expansion of an existing rural business;
  3. Affordable housing to meet local need at acceptable and sustainable locations within or as infilling or adjoining settlements, or as minor extensions to small groups of dwellings in the countryside;
  4. A rural exception site for employment in or adjoining a settlement
  5. A development to allow a small business to operate from home;
  6. One Planet Development;
  7. Necessary infrastructure provision and enhancement of infrastructure networks: or
  8. Recreational equine activities.

Countryside development must be of a sustainable form with prudent management of natural resources and respect for the cultural heritage of the area.

Wherever possible, existing buildings should be reused or adapted and if this is not feasible new buildings should be located within or close to existing groups of buildings.

Proposals to increase the number of residential chalets within the chalet developments of Hareslade, Holts Field, Miles Lane and Sandy Lane will not be permitted. 

Click to view on map

 

2.10.9

The Plan will ensure protection of the countryside for the economic, social and environmental benefits provided. In line with National Planning Policy and Guidance66 and will be achieved through the promotion of sustainable development within environmental limits. This means supporting development that does not conflict with the need to maintain and, where possible, enhance the countryside for future generations. 

66 Planning Policy Wales, Edition 10 and TAN 6:Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities 

2.10.10

This Policy will protect the countryside from inappropriate development and ensure that only in exceptional circumstances will development be acceptable. The acceptable exceptions are listed in the Policy and must be implemented in strict accordance with Policy PS 2 Placemaking and Place Management and the overarching principle of creating more sustainable rural communities. 

2.10.11

The countryside is defined as all the land that lies outside the defined settlement boundaries of the main urban area and Key Villages, as identified on the Proposals Map. Included within this definition of countryside are hamlets and small groups of dwellings (defined in paragraph 2.10.20) that are dispersed across the County. The countryside includes some relatively built-up areas on the fringe of the urban area that are judged to be separate from the urban area and where further intensification of development is undesirable

2.10.12

Rural enterprises comprise land related businesses, including agriculture, forestry and other activities that obtain their primary inputs from the site. Examples are the processing of agricultural, forestry and mineral products, together with land management activities and support services including agricultural contracting and tourism and leisure enterprises . They do not include renewable energy schemes that are covered by separate National Planning Policy and Guidance.

2.10.13

In addition, development for the purposes of a rural enterprise includes provision of essential residential accommodation, referred to as a rural enterprise dwelling. Extensive guidance on this form of development is provided in TAN 6 Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities (2010).

2.10.14

The Policy seeks to achieve an important balance between the need to support ruralenterprise and the need to promote sustainable development whilst protecting the local distinctiveness and character of the County’s countryside. In order to achieve this, to be acceptable, sustainable rural enterprises must demonstrate minimum impact on the local environment and community and a positive impact on the local economy.  

2.10.15

The Policy allows for existing rural businesses to expand, providing the new development is in conserve and enhance the quality of the countryside setting. Equally new employment uses will be permitted as rural exception sites. Employment uses in and adjoining an existing settlement boundary will need to be compatible to the location and neighbouring uses. Employment uses beyond the existing settlement will need to demonstrate that the nature of the business necessitates a rural location and mitigates against any harmful impacts on local amenity.

2.10.16

Where home working business operations are of a scale or intensity likely to require planning permission, in assessing applications, particular regard will be had to the access and parking arrangements and the effect that the working practice would have in surrounding properties.

2.10.17

In instances where a countryside location is considered not acceptable for a proposed enterprise, developers should consider existing employment areas on the outer edge of the urban area, as in many instances such sites could reasonably serve the rural area. This includes the employment areas at Crofty, Penclawdd, Pontarddulais, Pontlliw, Waunarlwydd and Clydach. This recognises the strong interdependence between the urban and rural areas of the County, as outlined in the Vision for the Plan. 

2.10.18

One Planet Development is defined in National Planning Policy and Guidance as ‘development that through its low impact either enhances or does not significantly diminish environmental quality’. One Planet Developments should initially achieve an ecological footprint of 2.4 global hectares per person or less in terms of consumption and demonstrate clear potential to move towards 1.88 global hectares over time’. TAN 6 Planning for Sustainable Rural Communites (2010)  sets out specific policy on One Planet Development in the countryside, including details of the robust evidence that must support planning applications for such proposals. This should be implemented with assistance from the One Planet Development67Practice Guidance that provides further information on the implementation of TAN 6 Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities (2010) . In protected landscapes and areas of ecological value One Planet Development may not be acceptable, unless the special landscape quality, natural beauty and/or ecological value of these areas is conserved and enhanced. All One Planet Development should be in accordance with Plan policy relating to placemaking and place management, Gower AONB, landscape protection and nature conservation.

67 Practice Guidance One Planet Development. TAN 6 Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities (2010).

2.10.19

Residential development in the countryside is strictly controlled through National Planning Policy and Guidance68 and proposals for new dwellings in the countryside will be assessed against the national policy framework. Where a new build residential development can be justified in the countryside it must also accord with Policy PS 2 Placemaking and Place Management. 

68 Planning Policy Wales (PPW) Edition 8 Chapter 9 Housing; TAN 6 Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities

2.10.20

In order to meet the identified local need for affordable housing as evidenced in the LHMA, the Plan allows for schemes that provide 100% Affordable Housing for Local Need on suitable sites within and adjoining settlements. Affordable Housing for Local Needs is also permitted within appropriate isolated groups of dwellings in the countryside. Such appropriate groups must contain five or more dwellings, consist of a continuous line of dwellings, or a close group of dwellings, adjacent to a highway and have reasonable access to facilities and services, for a rural location. The definition of small groups of dwellings in the countryside excludes groups of residential chalets. Any increase in the number of chalets within residential chalet developments will be viewed as intensification and will not be permitted. Guidance has been produced for chalet developments at Hareslade, Holts Field, Miles Lane and Sandy Lane. This guidance will be updated to provide SPG.

2.10.21

In line with Policy PS 2 Placemaking and Place Management development in the countryside must successfully integrate with the landscape. This is best achieved by the reuse or adaptation of an existing rural building in accordance with Policy CV 4 Conversion of Rural Buildings or, where this is not feasible locating new development amongst existing buildings. Careful attention should be given to siting, design and materials with appropriate measures to protect, and where possible, enhance the features of the surrounding countryside. Development within areas of protected landscape, because of its special quality will require landscape enhancement measures. Further guidance is provided in the Gower Design Guide SPG and the SLA assessment. 

2.10.22

The use of land for horse riding and its associated development can have a significant impact on the character of the rural landscape. Further guidance on controlling this form of development is contained within SPG relating to the Use of Land For Horses For Recreational Purposes and Associated Structures Fences, Access Ways. Commercial horse related developments, such as livery stables, use of land for equestrian events, or stables rented on a commercial basis, can have a greater impact on the landscape than private recreational use and careful consideration will be given to the scale, intensity of use, landscape and amenity impacts of such proposals.

Policy CV 3: REPLACEMENT DWELLINGS IN THE COUNTRYSIDE –

Proposals for the replacement of existing dwellings, including residential chalets, in the countryside will only be permitted where:

i. The original dwelling:

a. Does not make a positive contribution to the rural character of the local area; and/or

b. Has not been demolished or abandoned;

ii. The proposed development is of high quality and respects and/or enhances its setting in terms of design, character, scale, siting and sustainability;

iii. An extension to the existing residential curtilage is not involved; and

iv. The replacement dwelling is designed to be resource efficient and climate responsive.

 

2.10.23

This Policy seeks to retain rural dwellings that make a positive contribution to the County’s rural character and allows for the replacement of nondescript or poorly designed rural dwellings with better designed dwellings that enhance the appearance and character of the countryside

2.10.24

In order for a replacement dwelling proposal to be acceptable it must be of high quality in terms of sustainability and design, and respect and/or enhance its countryside location.

2.10.25

Where the existing dwelling is not considered to be of architectural merit there is scope to depart from its design. The replacement dwelling must be of high quality design that may be traditional or contemporary and innovative. Larger replacement dwellings may be considered favourably only where the new building fully respects or enhances the landscape quality. In all cases the siting of the replacement dwelling is expected to be similar to the existing house in order to maintain the overall landscape character

2.10.26

Replacement dwellings must also be exemplars of sustainability, exceeding building regulations requirements wherever feasible, whilst also respecting the qualities of the surrounding countryside. The AONB Design Guide SPG provides further guidance on the design of replacement dwellings for the Gower area.

2.10.27

Proposals for the replacement of dwellings that have been demolished or abandoned will be treated as new development in the countryside

2.10.28

Whilst there is no statutory definition of abandonment of a dwelling, the courts have held that four criteria should be examined in determining whether the use of a building has been abandoned:

1. The physical condition of the building;

2. The period of non-use;

3. Whether there has been any other use;

4. Evidence regarding the owner’s intentions.

2.10.29

Questions of abandonment in any particular Swansea Local Development Plan instance will be determined on the basis of a balanced consideration of the facts against these criteria. It may be necessary to submit an application for a Certificate of Existing Lawful Use in order to establish certainty. 

2.10.30

Chalet development covered by this Policy only relates to residential chalets for permanent occupancy and does not include holiday chalets. There are a number of clusters of residential chalets on Gower, such as Sandy Lane and Hareslade, where there is pressure to improve and/or replace these properties with more permanent structures. In order to determine proposals for replacement residential chalets sufficient justification must be provided in terms of context of the chalet site and surroundings and the appropriateness of the proposed development. 

2.10.31

Guidance has been produced for the chalet developments at Hareslade, Holts Field, Miles Lane and Sandy Lane. This guidance will be updated to provide SPG. Conditions may be imposed on replacement chalets to ensure that no extensions or additions are undertaken without further permission being obtained. Any proposal to increase the number of residential chalets will be assessed against Policy CV 2 Development in the Countryside.

Policy CV 4: CONVERSION OF RURAL BUILDINGS –

The conversion of traditional buildings in the countryside to new uses will be supported for the following beneficial uses:

i. Business;

ii. Community service or facility near a defined settlement;

iii. Affordable Housing for Local Need;

iv. Rural enterprise dwelling to serve an evidenced essential need.

Proposals must ensure that:

a. The building is largely intact, has a form, bulk and general design in keeping with its surroundings, and is capable of conversion (or extension) without prejudicing the original character of the building or the rural character of the locality;

b. The design and scale of the proposed conversion (or extension) including new window and door openings, extensions, means of access, service provision and curtilage respects the rural character and design of the building and integrates with the surrounding landscape, and in protected landscapes will conserve and enhance the quality of the landscape;

c. Any ancillary works associated with the conversion (or extension) do not unacceptably adversely affect the rural character of the locality;

d. The building is structurally suitable for Swansea Local Development Plan conversion (or extension) without a major or complete reconstruction, as verified by a structural stability report;

e. Safe access for pedestrians and vehicles can be provided without prejudicing the character and appearance of the area;

f. In the case of buildings extended or constructed with the benefit of agricultural permitted development rights, these buildings have genuinely been used for the agricultural purposes they were constructed; and

g. There would be no significant adverse effect on natural heritage. 

2.10.32

The strict controls outlined in this Policy aim to ensure that the conversion of rural buildings contributes to a more sustainable rural economy and does not detract from the special qualities of the County’s countryside. Further guidance will be provided in SPG.

2.10.33

Proposals must protect or enhance the nature conservation interest of the existing buildings in line with National Planning Policy and Guidance, Policy PS 2 Placemaking and Place Management and for proposals in Gower, the Gower AONB Design Guide SPG. 

2.10.34

Proposals for the conversion of existing rural buildings to market housing will not be supported, as evidence indicates that there is no need for further market housing in Swansea’s rural areas. Business use is one that provides employment opportunities and contributes to the rural economy. It covers light industrial use (including for smallscale ancillary storage) and commercial sport, recreation and tourism development. Tourism includes holiday accommodation. The conversion of rural buildings for holiday accommodation is also addressed in Policy TR 5 Holiday Accommodation. Community facilities are locally orientated services and amenities and may include a retail shop, social or sports club, place of worship, leisure or health facility. In all cases, the scale of use must be appropriate for the re-use of the traditional rural building and in terms of its appearance in the rural landscape. Affordable Housing for Local Needs is as defined in Policy H 6 100% Affordable Housing Exception Sites. 

2.10.35

Traditional rural buildings include stone built barns, stables, churches, chapels and schools which create locally distinctive development, contribute to the County’s attractive countryside scene and merit safeguarding. The suitability of a building for conversion will be assessed against the criteria set out in this policy, policy PS 2 Placemaking and Place management and other relevant policies in the Plan.

2.10.36

Traditional rural buildings can provide important habitats for valuable species including bats and barn owls. Proposals for the conversion of such buildings will need to ensure no significant adverse effects on protected species, the ecological network and features of biological importance, in- line with Policy ER 8 Habitats and Species and Policy ER 9 Ecological Network and Features of Importance for Biodiversity and Development SPG.

2.10.37

Development that fails to satisfy the Policy criteria will be judged development in the countryside and considered against Policy Cv 2 Development in the Countryside and national planning guidance. The criteria will also be applied to proposals to extend buildings that have already been converted. 

2.10.38

In cases where the building to be converted lies within a defined settlement, Policy PS 2 Placemaking and Place Management will still require the conversion scheme to be appropriate to its local context and sensitively relate to existing settlement patterns. Policy CV 1 Key Villages will allow for residential conversions for market housing. Subject to also meeting the requirements of Policy H 3 Affordable Housing.

2.10.39

Only very modest extensions will be allowed and normal permitted development rights to extend further or to construct ancillary buildings will be withdrawn.

Policy CV 5: FARM DIVERSIFICATION –

Proposals for the diversification of working farms will be permitted where:

i. The proposed non-agricultural use is run in conjunction with, and is complementary to, the existing farm operation;

ii. The proposal is supported by an appropriate business case which demonstrates the link to the existing agricultural activities of the working farm and the benefits of the scheme in terms of sustaining the rural economy;

iii. There will be no significant adverse effect on natural heritage or the vitality and viability of any nearby defined settlement;

iv. Adequate parking is provided to meet the needs of the diversified scheme;

v. In relation to new build development, the applicant must demonstrate that there are no suitable existing buildings available that could be converted/reused in preference to new build;

Where a new build can be justified it must be located within or, if a suitable site within is not available, immediately adjacent to the existing farm complex.

2.10.40

National Planning Policy and Guidance69 recognises that many economic activities can be sustainably located on farms and supports farm diversification provided such schemes are small scale and integrate well with the surrounding countryside. This is best achieved by utilising existing buildings. Therefore in the first instance developers should consider the re-use or sensitive conversion of existing rural buildings to accommodate development linked to farm diversification (subject to also meeting the criteria set out in Policy CV 4 Conversion of Rural Buildings). Only where such opportunities do not exist will new build be considered and developers are required to demonstrate that no suitable buildings are available for re-use or conversion before a new build scheme will be considered. 

69 Planning Policy Wales Edition 8 and TAN 6 Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities

2.10.41

It is important that diversification activity complements the farming activities. Likely appropriate farm diversification schemes may include small on-farm operations such as food processing and packaging, together with service – (e.g. offices, work facilities, equipment hire and maintenance), tourism, sports and recreation, countryside management and renewable energy, proposals for which will be considered against relevant policies in the Plan. It is important that such proposals contribute to and complement the agricultural activities of the farm and should be well-founded in terms of effectively contributing to the agricultural business. This Policy therefore requires the developer to provide a business case for diversification proposals to demonstrate the link to existing business activity and the benefits of the scheme, in relation to sustaining employment and the rural economy. This should include details of existing farm activities, the need for diversification, and implications of any proposals on the rural economy, such as the provision of local employment opportunities.

2.10.42

In order to achieve more sustainable rural communities the provision of community services, facilities and sustainable enterprises is focussed on the defined settlements, including Key Villages. Farm diversification schemes, such tea rooms, the selling of specialist food products and schemes that include a retail element , for example a campsite shop , could draw trade away from villages and retail centres harming their vitality and viability. In such circumstances the proposed development may not be supported. 

2.10.43

The provision of farm shops is adequately dealt with in TAN 6 Planning for Sustainable Rural Communities (2010).

2.11

TOURISM AND RECREATION

Policy TR 1: TOURISM, RECREATION AND LEISURE DEVELOPMENT –

Tourism, recreation and leisure development that capitalises upon the County’s distinctive assets and helps create a year round destination will be supported.

Within the Swansea Central Area, proposals must contribute towards the revitalisation and regeneration of the Retail Centre and City Waterfront.

In rural areas, proposals for sustainable tourism and sustainable recreation will be supported where they seek to conserve and enhance the County’s natural heritage and reinforce vibrant rural communities.

Development proposals that would have an unacceptable adverse impact on features and areas of tourism interest and their settings, or that would result in the unjustified loss of tourism facilities or heritage assets, will not be permitted.

Developers will be required to submit a Tourism Needs and Development Impact Assessment alongside planning application for new, or the extension of existing, tourism facilities or accommodation.

2.11.1

This Strategic Policy sets the overarching approach to encouraging tourism, recreation and leisure proposals that can help bring about increased investment, wider opportunities for residents and visitor, and help enhance natural heritage settings.  

2.11.2

Urban areas of the County are most suited to the location of new tourism and recreation facilities or visitor attractions, particularly those of large scale. Proposals for new leisure uses will be considered against relevant policies contained within the Regeneration and Commercial Development Section, which sets out the requirement for a sequential approach. 

2.11.3

Proposals that consolidate the urban tourism resource by improving the quality and range of attractions, accommodation and services will be supported, subject to consideration of relevant area wide policies and those relating to the Swansea Central Area, Swansea Bay, the River Tawe Corridor, former docks and Swansea and Tennant canals. 

2.11.4

The majority of visitors are attracted to the County due to the natural beauty of its landscape and coastal features, which are important features and areas of tourism interest and provide an important setting for the County’s unique environment. Inevitably some tourism related developments, by their very nature, must be located in the countryside, and it is important that these developments do not have any significant adverse impact on the landscape, natural environment or amenity. Whilst having potential to assist in meeting economic objectives, the economic benefit of a scheme will in some instances not justify approving an application where the environmental, social or cultural impact is judged to be unacceptable, for example where significant harm would be caused to a landscape of national importance such as the AONB and heritage coast.

2.11.5

The County has an international reputation for exceptional walking, mountain biking and surfing opportunities and is well placed to take advantage of the economic benefits that activity tourism can bring. There are a large number of walking routes within the County, including the Mawr uplands, urban parklands and the Wales Coastal Path (that follows the entire coastline of the County) which are promoted and maintained by the Council. Walking tourism plays an important role in the sustainable tourism offer of the County and is of economic benefit to rural and coastal localities in particular. Proposals which support Active Travel (including cycling) and protect and enhance PROWs will be encouraged in accordance with Policies T 2: Active Travel, T 7: Public Rights of Way and Recreational Routes. Development of new visitor facilities and attractions or development in support of sustainable recreation activities along the Developed Coast will be assessed against Policy TR 2: The Developed Coast and Waterfront. Proposals outside the locations specified will be assessed against Policy ER 7: The Undeveloped Coast, which seeks to safeguard the undeveloped coast from inappropriate development. 

2.11.6

In order to support planning applications for new, or the extension of existing, tourism facilities or accommodation, developers will be required to submit a Tourism Needs and Development Impact Assessment (TNDIA) alongside their planning application. The information required within a TNDIA will be proportionate to the nature of the proposal, its scale and location. However, as a general overview the types of information required as part of a TNDIA would be:

• Evidence to support why a development of this type is needed, for example, no such facilities or sites exist within the Locality, or there is a waiting list of people wanting to use existing visitor accommodation sites in the vicinity;

• Evidence to show that the proposal is viable and sustainable as a tourism business;

• Impact on the local community, for example, how the development will support the economy, number of jobs created, increased revenue/visitor spend in local economy;

• If appropriate, how the impact on agricultural business will be mitigated, for example, loss of grazing;

• Evidence of vacancy rates within a reasonable geographical area, as agreed with the Council, in order to demonstrate any significant unmet need;

• Demand; 

• Assessment of the anticipated levels of vehicular traffic, parking space demand and highway safety impact;

• Demonstration that the development is of high quality, sustainable buildings which extend the existing tourism offer;

• A Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment, including details of appropriate mitigation. 

2.11.7

Further detail relating to unjustified loss of a tourism facility or heritage asset which provides an important community facility is found in Policy SI 2: Providing and Safeguarding Community Facilities and Locally Important Uses.

2.11.8

No policies have been included for off-road recreational vehicles and golf courses, matters as they are adequately covered by National Planning Policy and Guidance70:

70 TAN16 Technical Advice Note 16: Sport, Recreation and Open Space (2009) 

Policy TR 2: DEVELOPED COAST AND WATERFRONT –

Development of new visitor facilities and attractions, including proposals for sustainable recreation activities, will be permitted at the following coastal and waterfront locations, provided that they are of a scale and design that respects sensitive natural heritage, landscape, seascape and historic environment interests: 

  1. Key destinations around Swansea Bay
  2. Urban Lakes
  3. Swansea and Tennant Canals 
  4. Lower River Tawe
  5. Bracelet Bay
  6. Limeslade Bay
  7. Rotherslade Bay
  8. Langland Bay
  9. Caswell Bay
  10. Oxwich
  11. Horton and Port Eynon
  12. Rhossili
  13. Llangennith
  14. Penclawdd
  15. Loughor Foreshore
  16. Lliw Valley Reservoirs

Outside these areas of appropriate development, the emphasis is on conserving and enhancing the natural environment of Swansea Bay, the Gower Peninsula and other waterfront areas.

2.11.9

The development of sustainable recreational and tourist developments at appropriate locations around the County’s coast and waterfront will be encouraged in order to contribute to the enhancement of attractions for visitors and residents.  

2.11.10

Further detail on key destinations around Swansea Bay is set out in the Swansea Bay Strategy which establishes a vision for the Bay and assesses the specific development potential at these locations, as well as the scope for environmental and infrastructure enhancements. The key destinations are: Maritime Quarter/City Waterfront, St Helens, Sketty Lane, Blackpill Seafront/Lido and Mumbles Seafront, including Oystermouth, Mumbles Pier and Foreshore. Between these areas the emphasis is on safeguarding and enhancing the environment of the Bay and other waterfront areas. Regard must be had to the relevant adopted SPG documents relating to these destinations, including the Swansea Bay Strategy.

2.11.11

The areas of the Gower coastline identified provide opportunities for improved access, appropriate sustainable tourism and recreation, and for the improved management and enhancement of existing facilities within the overall context of coastal and environmental protection policies. Urban lakes are those within settlement limits, such as Fendrod and Pluck Lakes in the lower Swansea Valley. Fendrod Lake is a designated Quiet Area, which recognises the tranquil character of the area, whilst a SSSI is designated in close proximity to Pluck Lake. Any development must respect the designation. Within the AONB protection of natural beauty will remain the prime consideration.

2.11.12

At the locations identified for visitor and recreation facilities and services, the impact of any increased activity on nature conservation and landscape interests will need to be taken into consideration. Account should also be taken of the Shoreline Management Plan (SMP2), which sets out sustainable policies for coastal defence.

2.11.13

Any other form of development which requires a coastal location should be located on the developed coast, subject to due regard being paid to the risks of erosion, flooding or land stability and justification why a coastal location is required. 

2.11.14

Some of the areas identified within the Policy are defined settlements on the Proposals Map. In such cases, Policies PS 1 Sustainable Places and CV 1 Key Villages will also apply to any proposed development.

Policy TR 3: SUSTAINABLE TOURISM AND RECREATION DEVELOPMENT IN THE COUNTRYSIDE –

Proposals for sustainable tourism and recreation related attractions and facilities outside settlement limits will only be permitted where:

i. It is demonstrated that the proposal is economically viable and contributes towards improving the range of the tourism offer in the County;

ii. It is demonstrated that either a countryside location is essential or it could not be accommodated within, or adjoining, the development limits of an existing settlement;

iii. The proposal would not have a significant adverse impact upon the County’s natural or cultural heritage, or the social, economic, environmental or residential amenity of the locality; and

iv. Access is possible by a range of transport modes and the development would not generate unacceptable levels of vehicular traffic to the detriment of highway safety.

All sustainable tourism and recreation proposals outside settlement limits must be supported by a Tourism Needs and Development Impact Assessment. 

 

2.11.15

The Policy relates to rural enterprises, specifically new tourism, leisure and recreation facilities and attractions which may include ancillary holiday accommodation. This includes proposals for, and extensions of, existing tourism attractions and facilities. Any ancillary accommodation proposed as part of a wider scheme should remain subordinate economically to the main attraction/facility. 

2.11.16

The Policy does not apply to proposals which are entirely for built serviced or non-serviced tourist accommodation developments, which should be considered under Policy TR 5 Holiday Accommodation. Proposals for new static caravan sites, touring caravan and tented camping sites should be considered against Policies TR 6 New Static Caravan, Touring Caravan and/or Camping Sites within AONB or TR 7 New Static Caravan, Touring Caravan and/or Camping Sites Outside the AONB, depending on location. 

2.11.17

Certain proposals by their very nature will require a countryside location such as golf, fishing and mountain biking. Such activities will need to be designed in a manner to ensure the environmental impact is fully assessed and is minimised. When assessing proposals within the AONB, the primary consideration will be the protection and enhancement of the AONB and should also be considered against Policy ER 4 Gower AONB. 

2.11.18

The County has many areas within, or close to, the urban settlement that provide an important recreation and leisure resource for the County’s population. Sustainable recreation and leisure activities will be supported in areas such as Kilvey Community Woodland, Loughor Foreshore (Policy  TR 2 Developed Coast and Waterfront) Clyne Valley and Penllergaer Valley Woods (Policy TR 4 Clyne Valley Country Park and Penllergaer Valley Woods) providing there is no adverse impact on natural heritage and amenity.

2.11.19

Extensions to existing tourism related attractions and/or facilities should be subordinate in scale and function. Proposals that constitute substantial extensions will be treated as new development and considered against relevant policies. 

2.11.20

Any permission for accommodation units granted under this policy will be tied to the host attraction/facility by legal agreement and/or condition and will not be considered to be a separate planning unit. Any subsequent application for additional accommodation units as an expansion of the planning unit, must be in proportion to the growth of the host business and will not be permitted unless it satisfies the policy criteria.

2.11.21

Conditions will be applied as appropriate restricting use to holiday accommodation only. Holiday occupation conditions allow use of the property for up to 12 months of the year in order to extend the holiday season, but restrict occupation by a single occupier to no more than six months of the year. The units must be for ‘recreational use’ only and not be the primary or sole residence of any occupants. An annual Statutory Declaration will be required to be submitted along with a site register of occupants. Permission for the removal of holiday accommodation conditions to enable permanent residential use, or operation as a separate business, will be resisted as it would undermine the original reason for granting planning permission

Policy TR 4: CLYNE VALLEY COUNTRY PARK AND PENLLERGAER VALLEY WOODS –

Clyne Valley Country Park and Penllergaer Valley Woods Historic Park and Garden will be safeguarded and their development and management for the Swansea Local Development Plan purposes of a Country Park and Historic Park and Garden will be supported and encouraged.

Sustainable tourism and recreation development will be supported provided natural heritage is conserved or enhanced and the historic environment is preserved and enhanced.

2.11.22

Country Parks are designated for the purposes of recreation under the 1968 Countryside Act. Penllergaer Valley Woods are included in the Register of Historic Parks and Gardens in Wales and has undergone significant restoration in recent years. Both Clyne Valley Country Park and Penllergaer Valley Woods represent strategically important green space and key elements of the Country’s green Infrastructure network.

2.11.23

Clyne Valley Country Park is situated on the western edge of urban Swansea and covers some 300 Ha, part of which lies within the AONB. Penllergaer Valley Woods Historic Park and Garden is situated in the north west of the County and covers some 101 Ha's. Both the Country Park and Historic Park and Garden are is of great significance in terms of informal recreation both for local residents from the surrounding urban area and for visitors and tourists to the County. The extent of the Country Park and Historic Park and Garden are illustrated on the Constraints and Issues Map and any development within the Park and Garden must be in accordance with Policy HC 2 Preservation or Enhancement of Buildings and Features.

2.11.24

Opportunities to improve access into the Country Park from the urban area will be encouraged as part of any sustainable tourism and recreation development. A cycle track through the park provides a well-established and important Active Travel route linking North West Swansea with Swansea Bay. Opportunities to appropriately improve and extend this provision will be encouraged. 

2.11.25

Sustainable tourism and recreation development must ensure the conservation and enhancement of the natural heritage of the Country Park and Penllergaer Valley Woods. Both the Country Park and Penllergaer Valley Woods supports areas of Ancient Woodland and have been designated Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINCs). In addition there is a wealth of industrial and cultural heritage in both the Country Park and Penllergaer Valley Woods that should be preserved and where possible enhanced.

2.11.26

Regard must be had to the area of former landfill use, which will restrict the types of facilities that can be accommodated in that area.

Policy TR 5: HOLIDAY ACCOMMODATION –

Proposals for new holiday accommodation will be permitted within the defined development limits of existing settlements.

Outside settlement limits, holiday accommodation Swansea Local Development Plan will be permitted where:

a. it could not be accommodated within the development limit of an existing settlement,

and

b. it is demonstrated that a countryside location is essential,

and where:

i. It consists of the re-use and adaptation of existing rural buildings;

or

ii. It would comprise a new building within an established group of farm buildings which would assist in an agricultural diversification scheme;

or

iii. It would provide ancillary holiday accommodation to an established sustainable rural tourism enterprise or leisure attraction and would remain subordinate to the host attraction;

or

iv. The proposal is for high quality sustainable development which broadens the County’s accommodation offer and provides short term holiday lets, but not individual private holiday homes; and

v. In relation to new build developments within the AONB which are not covered by criteria i-iii, landscape capacity has been demonstrated in accordance with the Landscape Sensitivity and Capacity Study;

and

vi. A Tourism Needs and Development Impact Assessment is submitted as part of the application.

In order to meet tourism need, any permission will be controlled to ensure individual units will not be available for private purchase, but maintained as short term holiday lets. 

2.11.27

This Policy relates to new permanent holiday accommodation or the re-use and adaptation of existing rural buildings for holiday accommodation purposes. Proposals for new caravan, camping and lodge or cabin sites which are considered nonpermanent developments under planning law should assessed under Policies TR 6: New Static Caravan, Touring Caravan and Camping Sites Within the AONB and TR 7 New Static Caravan, Touring Caravan or Camping Sites Outside the AONB. 

2.11.28

In the context of this Policy ‘established sustainable rural tourism enterprise’ relates to existing visitor attractions, not to established caravan and campsites, hotels or other tourism accommodation units.

2.11.29

Proposals for holiday accommodation outside settlements should first look to the re-use and adaptation of existing buildings in order to protect the countryside from inappropriate development (Policy CV 4: Conversion of Rural Buildings). Only if no suitable buildings are available for re-use and adaptation should new development be proposed. Any proposals for new holiday accommodation units should be of a scale and size suitable for holiday accommodation and not be akin to residential dwellings in respect of layout or amenity space and provision of ancillary structures such as garages and outbuildings.

2.11.30

New development must be of a high quality design and sensitively integrate into the landscape. The Policy seeks to limit the development of new holiday accommodation units within the AONB to areas where there is identified landscape capacity, in order to balance the growth of the tourism economy and potential detrimental landscape impact. A primary consideration when determining planning applications within the AONB must be to take into account the full extent of the developments likely effects on the designated landscape. The Gower Landscape Sensitivity and Character Study (LSCS) identifies areas of the AONB which have some degree of landscape capacity for caravan and campsites without detriment to landscape character. The LSCS assumes that significant adverse landscape and visual effects result from larger caravan sites, including cabin and lodge type developments which fall under the definition of a caravan but are placed permanently on site. Given that these types of developments have much in common in appearance and impacts on the landscape to permanent built development (such as chalet holiday accommodation), it is appropriate to use the LSCS as a baseline to assess such applications. Development within the AONB must also have regard to the design objectives set out within the Gower AONB Design Guide SPG.

2.11.31

Controls will be applied to any planning permission restricting the use to holiday accommodation only as set out in the amplification to Policy TR 3: Sustainable Tourism and Recreation Development in the Countryside. 

2.11.32

Where the proposal is for ancillary accommodation to an existing rural tourism enterprise, the accommodation will be tied by condition to the existing enterprise, so it cannot be considered to be a separate planning unit. Permitted development rights to construct extensions and outbuildings will be withdrawn and seasonal occupation conditions applied as appropriate to prevent the residential use of accommodation which by the character of its construction or design is unsuitable for continuous occupation.

2.11.33

Some areas of the County have significant numbers of holiday accommodation units compared to the local resident population. This can lead to conflict in reconciling the interests of residents with intense visitor pressure at certain times of the year leading to oversaturation of an area. The impact of additional holiday accommodation units on the landscape, and the visual impact, traffic congestion and parking space demand must be considered as part of any TNDIA submitted with a planning application. 

2.11.34

There is a demand for high quality accommodation in many parts of the County and associated pressure on existing housing stock. In some villages many houses are privately owned holiday accommodation, not used as short term lets, thus not addressing tourism demand and which are empty for much of the year. This impacts on social cohesion and community well-being. In order to meet tourism need any permission will be conditioned in order to ensure the properties are available for short term holiday lets and are not owned as private holiday homes.

Policy TR 6: NEW STATIC CARAVAN, TOURING CARAVAN AND/OR CAMPING SITES WITHIN THE AONB –

Within the AONB no new static caravan sites will be permitted. New touring caravan and/or tented camping sites for 6 or more units will be supported in areas which are shown to have landscape capacity subject to the following criteria:

i. Landscape capacity has been demonstrated in accordance with the Gower Landscape Sensitivity and Capacity Study;

ii. There would be no material harm to the landscape character and environmental quality of the surrounding area, either individually or cumulatively with other sites in the vicinity;

iii. There are satisfactory service arrangements in terms of access roads, sewerage, power and  water supply, surface water disposal and waste disposal; 

iv. The site is well located in relation to an adequate road system which can accommodate the traffic generated, and where possible convenient access to public transport;

v. Ancillary facilities such as shower and/or toilet blocks, drying rooms, waste disposal and dishwashing/laundry facilities should be of an appropriate scale and sited to avoid material harm to landscape character;

vi. A Tourism Needs and Development Impact Assessment is submitted in support of the application.

Proposals for tented camping and/or up to a maximum of 5 touring caravans on seasonal sites will be supported:

a. Within landscape character areas identified as having capacity for additional camping and caravan sites within the Gower Landscape Sensitivity and Capacity Study;

b. Within other landscape character areas, excluding the Undeveloped Coast, of the AONB provided that criteria ii to vi above are met.

New sites for touring caravans and/or camping will be conditioned to restrict the use to touring caravans and camping only and the siting of any individual unit will be restricted to 28 consecutive days or a total of 65 days in any calendar year on any one site.

Occupancy records must be made available to the Council annually on request.  

 

2.11.35

A number of caravan and camp sites are located within the County, the majority being within the AONB. Many sites are concentrated together, resulting in a detrimental cumulative landscape impact. Within the AONB, the conservation and enhancement of the natural beauty of the landscape is the primary aim. With this in mind, the starting point for consideration of any planning application for new caravan and camping sites within the AONB will be an assessment of its impact on the landscape using the Gower Landscape Sensitivity and Capacity (LSC) Study and the design of new sites will be assessed against criteria outlined within the relevant SPG.

2.11.36

In view of the sensitivity and national significance of the AONB landscape and the existing numbers of static caravans located within the AONB, the Council does not consider that there is sufficient justification for any new static caravans due to their potential detrimental landscape and visual amenity impacts as a result of their degree of permanency and their urbanising effect on the landscape

2.11.37

Pods (as defined within the glossary) are a relatively new form of tourist accommodation and as such are not covered by the Caravans and Development Control Act 1960. Not with standing this, any application for Pods or similar structures will therefore be considered against this Policy.

2.11.38

Touring units are defined as touring caravans, tents, trailer tents and camper vans/motor homes. The purpose of the Policy is to increase the number of touring pitches and tented camping pitches where an identified demand has been demonstrated and there exists sufficient capacity in the landscape. Touring units (particularly caravans) placed on site pitches (seasonal touring pitches) for several weeks, or months at a time appear as more permanent features that can have a suburbanising impact on the County’s rural landscape. Such practice has the consequence of reducing the amount of pitches available and has led to pressure for additional touring pitches. As touring caravan sites are fundamentally temporary in character, and in order to protect the landscape, touring units will be required to be removed from site pitches outside the holiday season, i.e. between 30th October and Good Friday or 1st April (whichever is earlier) in any year. 

2.11.39

Yurts and Tepees are relatively new forms of accommodation which are often sited on campsites. They are typically large tent like structures with wooden frames and floors and often have beds and wood burning stoves within them, making them more permanent structures than traditional tents. They are likely to remain on the same pitch all holiday season. They are not covered by the Caravan and Control of Development Act 1960. Not withstanding this, any application for Yurts or Tepees will be considered under this Policy.

2.11.40

Small sites of 5 or less touring caravans and/or tented camping can potentially be accommodated within sensitive rural locations where larger touring sites would be unduly intrusive. They also help support local business/farming enterprises and thereby contribute to the rural economy.

2.11.41

Within the AONB, permitted development rights for the siting of up to 3 caravans on holdings of 5 acres or more for a maximum of 28 days in any year have been removed by an Article 4 Direction. These rights can be reinstated through the planning application process and proposals must be considered on their merits and having regard to the need to ensure an appropriate distribution of sites within the AONB and throughout the season. When considering applications, the cumulative impact of developments will be assessed to ensure that they do not cause significant harm to natural heritage, landscape amenity, highways and utilities infrastructure provision.

2.11.42

Ancillary infrastructure may not necessarily be appropriate on smaller touring caravan and tented camping sites and sites must be remain capable of being returned to agricultural use during the ‘offseason’, so the use of hardstanding pitches, washrooms, access roads and other forms of urbanising operational development will be resisted on sites of 5 or less units

2.11.43

Some areas within the AONB have significant numbers of holiday accommodation units compared to the local resident population. This can lead to conflict in reconciling the interests of residents with intense visitor pressure at certain times of the year leading to oversaturation of an area and this must be addressed as part of the TNDIA.

Policy TR 7: NEW STATIC CARAVAN, TOURING CARAVAN AND/OR CAMPING SITES OUTSIDE THE AONB –

Proposals for new static, touring caravan or camping sites outside the AONB will be permitted provided that:

i. There would be no material harm to the landscape character and environmental quality of the surrounding area, either individually or cumulatively with other sites in the vicinity;

i i. There are satisfactory service arrangements in terms of access roads, sewerage, power and water supply, surface water disposal and waste disposal;

iii. The site is well located in relation to an adequate road system which can accommodate the traffic generated, and where possible convenient access to public transport;

iv. Ancillary facilities such as shower and/or toilet blocks, drying rooms, waste disposal and dishwashing/laundry facilities should be of an appropriate scale and sited to avoid material harm to landscape character;

v. A Tourism Needs and Development Impact Swansea Local Development Plan Assessment is submitted in support of the application.

Any development will be required to demonstrate that it would support the role and function of the nearest settlement by providing additional complementary facilities that are available for use by the community, where appropriate.

New facilities offered via the site must not affect the vitality of services which already exist within the nearest settlement, either individually or cumulatively with other caravan or camping sites.

All proposals for new static caravan sites will be controlled to limit occupation to holiday use only. In order to meet tourism need, any permission will be controlled to ensure individual units will not be available for private purchase, but maintained as short term holiday lets, in order to meet tourism need and prevent the creation of separate planning units. 

T ouring caravan and camping sites will be conditioned to restrict the use to touring caravans and camping only and the siting of the touring caravan will be restricted to 28 consecutive days or a total of 65 days in any calendar year on any one site. Occupancy records must be made available to the Council annually on request.

2.11.44

Opportunities exist for additional provision of new caravan and camping sites outside the AONB, particularly in the north of the County, which would increase the range of sites available for holidaymakers. New caravan and camping sites proposed within the SLA must also accord with Policy ER 5: Landscape Protection. 

2.11.45

Site layout, spacing between units, landscaping and associated features, such as car parking areas, patios/decking, will be carefully assessed in order to ensure that twin-unit lodge or cabin developments would not have an unacceptable impact due to their bulk. Proposals should be for short term holiday let only, and a condition limiting the accommodation to holiday occupation will be imposed to ensure that the units are not the primary or sole residence of any occupants and an annual site register of occupants will be required to be submitted to the Council.

2.11.46

Pods, Yurts, Tepees or similar structures not covered by the Caravans and Control of Development Act (1960). Not withstanding this, any application for such structures will be considered against this Policy.

2.11.47

Permissions for new touring caravan and tented camping sites will be conditioned in order to control their occupancy, the length of time they can be sited on site and their size, as specified in the amplification to Policy TR 6 New Static Caravan, Touring Caravan And Camping Sites Within The AONB.

2.11.48

Ancillary infrastructure may not necessarily be appropriate on smaller touring caravan and tented camping sites as such sites must be capable of being returned to agricultural use during the ‘off season’, so the use of hardstanding pitches, washrooms, access roads and other forms of urbanising operational development will be resisted on sites of 5 or less units . 

Policy TR 8: EXISTING STATIC CARAVAN, TOURING CARAVAN AND/OR CAMPING SITES –

Proposals for minor extensions of the area of existing static caravans, touring caravans or tented camping, within the boundaries of existing sites will be permitted provided:

i. There would be no harm to natural heritage;

ii. The development will provide sustainable development opportunities and enhance the environmental quality of the site;

iii. The site extension will

( a) not result in detrimental loss of greenspace (including play areas or amenity areas) within the site;

(b) improve site landscaping; and

(c) better integrate the site in the landscape;

iv. A strong physical boundary remains around the existing site;

v. It will enable increased/improved facilities to be located on the site;

vi. The overall scale of the operation is not significantly increased;

vii. There are no detrimental impacts due to increase in traffic movements and pressure on utilities infrastructure; and 

viii.  A Tourism Needs and Development Impact Assessment is submitted in support of the application. 

Material changes to the type of accommodation provided on existing sites will only be permitted where the proposal would bring about environmental, landscape and visual amenity improvements; would not require extensive additional infrastructure and services; would result in significant overall benefit to the character and appearance of the area; and add to the range and quality of tourism accommodation available.

The provision, enhancement and upgrading of ancillary facilities (e.g. site shops, cafes, drying rooms or shower facilities) at existing sites, including the development of wet weather attractions within the sites which are available for community use, will be permitted subject to the facility being subordinate in scale and would not result in significant adverse impact on the landscape, residential amenity or infrastructure. 

2.11.49

The definition of minor extensions will depend on the individual characteristics of each site and whether any suitable opportunities for extensions within the site boundary exist. The site location, lack of containing features or insufficient open space and landscaping within the site may preclude any minor extension within the site boundary. Consequently, if a site is permitted to expand under this Policy, any subsequent applications for minor extensions within the site will be carefully assessed to control incremental growth, over-intensification of the site and to ensure there are no significant adverse impacts.

2.11.50

Proposals for extensions beyond the site boundary will be considered against Policy TR 9: Extensions to, and Overflow Areas Of, Existing Touring Caravan and Camping Sites. Any increase in numbers or amendments to layout will also need to satisfy Licensing Regulations. Pods, Yurts and Tepees (which are not covered by the Caravans and Development Control Act 1960) will be considered under this Policy.

2.11.51

The erosion of levels of provision through the change of use of holiday accommodation on existing caravan sites to permanent residential units has negatively impacted on the choice of the available accommodation to visitors. This Policy is aimed at providing improved and additional tourist accommodation, therefore no change in status of an existing static caravan, to a residential park will be permitted. 

2.11.52

The loss of existing touring sites could also lead to an increase in pressure to develop new touring sites. Therefore within the AONB the loss of touring pitches to static pitches (including Pods) or seasonal touring pitches (pitches that at are rented to a single occupier for the entire season) will be resisted in order to maintain a supply of touring pitches within the AONB and for consistency with Policy TR 6 New Static Caravan, Touring Caravan and/or Camping Sites Within the AONB.

2.11.53

The adverse impacts on the landscape that may arise from a change of use from tented pitches to touring unit pitches or extensions to sites containing such pitches are generally seasonal in nature and may therefore be more easily accommodated than changes to static caravans, which have the effect of creating permanent development in the countryside. Within the AONB, proposals to replace tent and touring caravan pitches with static caravans or Pods will not be supported, as they would introduce more visually intrusive development, particularly in the winter months, harming the character and natural beauty of the area. 

2.11.54

Proposals to change tents or touring to Yurts or Tepees pitches as part of scheme of site improvement may be supported as they are seasonal in nature, are available for short-term let and increase the range and choice of accommodation on a site. The removal of bases during the winter months would be required. 

2.11.55

Where changes of use from static caravan pitches to Lodges/Cabins, Pods, Yurts or Tepees is proposed this may improve the range and quality of available accommodation, but must form part of a scheme of site improvement that would achieve an overall enhancement of the character and appearance of the area. In order to ensure that such development has no significant adverse effect on the environmental quality of the area and satisfactorily blends into the landscape, material considerations will include scale, design, material, the setting in a winter landscape and impact of new ancillary infrastructure such as lighting.  

2.11.56

In order to sustain a healthy tourism accommodation base the provision, enhancement and upgrading of site facilities (for example site shops, cafes, drying rooms or shower facilities) and leisure facilities on offer at existing sites is encouraged and should aim to reduce the overall environmental impact of the site, for example through landscaping or increasing biodiversity. A sites sustainability could also be improved though development, for example schemes that include grey water harvesting to minimise the use of water resources, or schemes that reduce the impact of lighting in order to ensure tranquillity, in accordance with the Gower Lighting Scheme SPG and other relevant guidance. Proposals must not have a significant averse effect on landscape or seascape.

Policy TR 9: EXTENSIONS TO, AND OVERFLOW AREAS OF, TOURING CARAVAN AND/OR CAMPING SITES –

Proposals for minor extensions to the permitted site boundaries of touring caravan and camping sites will be permitted where:

i. There would be no harm to natural heritage;

ii. The development would increase the sustainability and environmental quality of the site; 

iii. A strong physical boundary exists or can be created around the extension area; iv. It would better integrate the site in the landscape;

v. The overall scale of the operation is not significantly increase;

vi. There would be no detrimental impacts due to increase in traffic movements and pressure on utilities infrastructure; and

vii. Within the AONB, landscape capacity has been demonstrated in accordance with the Gower Landscape Sensitivity and Capacity Study

The extension site will be conditioned for use by touring caravans and/or tented camping only and that units are not sited on pitches within the site extension for more than 28 consecutive days or a total of 65 days in any one calendar year.

Proposals for Overflow areas for tented camping or touring caravan pitches as extensions to sites on a short term basis during bank holiday periods may be permitted temporarily provided they would not require additional infrastructure and would not cause significant harm on local amenity.

A Tourism Needs and Development Impact Assessment must be submitted in support of the application. 

2.11.57

The purpose of the Policy is to increase the number of touring pitches and tented camping pitches where an identified demand has been demonstrated. 

2.11.58

Minor extensions are defined as a permanent increase in the area of an existing site. They are not quantified as each site has a different site area, unit densities and landscape characteristics and what can be considered as ‘minor extensions’ will vary. Each will be considered on its merits, but must be in proportion to the existing site. Extensions may result in a site integrating more positively in the landscape if site boundaries are reconfigured away from sensitive coastal locations.

2.11.59

Overflow areas are short-term temporary minor extensions of a site. Site operators are required to apply for permission to operate ‘overflow’ areas on their sites particularly to accommodate visitors who have not pre-booked pitches during times of peak demand and the site is at capacity. It is the site owner’s responsibility to ensure that any permitted overflow area does not breach site license conditions. Overflow areas will be controlled by condition for temporary periods and only for nonadvance booking pitches. During inclement weather within the holiday season, the overflow areas can be used at times of low demand instead of pitches on the main site, to enable pitches on the main site to dry out/recuperate provided that the number of units on site does not exceed the permitted number.

2.11.60

In support of any extension/overflow proposal a report must be submitted to demonstrate the vacancy rates of other campsites in the vicinity.

Policy TR 10: SHORT-TERM ‘FESTIVAL’ CAMPING EVENTS –

Proposals for camping associated with a festival event will be permitted subject to the following criteria:

i. Permission will not be granted for more than 5 consecutive nights;

ii. Within the AONB, landscape capacity has been demonstrated in accordance with the Gower Landscape Sensitivity and Capacity Study;

iii. There would be no material harm to environmental quality and natural heritage, or the amenities of the area;

iv. There are satisfactory service arrangements in terms of access roads, sewerage, power and water supply, surface water disposal and waste disposal;

v. The site is well located in relation to an adequate road system which can accommodate the traffic generated, and served by adequate public transport.

 

2.11.61

In recent years there have been a growing number of festivals held within the County, many within the AONB. The ‘festivals’ are primarily short-term occurrences, often related to music concerts, sporting or food-related events and require camping provision for those attending and working at the events. 

2.11.62

As well as obtaining the necessary licenses, organisers of ‘festivals’ located within the Gower AONB will also require planning permission. The Council recognises the economic benefit of these events and the fact that they contribute to the tourism offer of the County and is therefore supportive of such proposals provided they are short term and there is no detrimental impact on local amenities, landscape or infrastructure. 

2.11.63

The Policy is specifically aimed at short-term camping events in association with organised festivals not located on a permitted or established caravan or campsite. In order to ensure that there is no change in character of an area, permissions for festival camping events will typically be restricted to no more than two events per calendar month during the period from Good Friday or 1st April (whichever is the earliest) to 30th October in any one year. 

2.11.64

The scale of camping will be carefully controlled in order to ensure that it can be accommodated within the area and does not have any detrimental effect on the residential amenity of neighbouring areas, highways, utilities and natural heritage. Permission will normally be restricted to specified individual field units or within the curtilage of existing buildings which are being used for the event.

Policy TR 11: CARAVAN RALLIES –

Permission for caravan rallies will be permitted where:

i. Within the AONB, landscape capacity has been demonstrated in accordance with the Gower Landscape Sensitivity and Capacity Study;

ii. The number of caravan units will not, when considered cumulatively with other rallies occurring at the same time, have a detrimental impact on highway infrastructure and utilities;

iii. The duration and frequency of rallies held will not result in an over-intensive use of the site;

iv. The duration of any one rally on a site will be restricted to no more than 28 consecutive days or a total of 65 days in any one calendar year;

v. The landscape and visual impact of the rally will not have a detrimental impact on the landscape, either individually or cumulatively with other rallies occurring at the same time.

Preference will be given to rallies on established rally sites. 

2.11.65

The impact of numerous rallies occurring at the same time can result in significant numbers of touring units travelling at the same time, often causing significant highway impacts. The number and frequency of rallies can also result in significant short term landscape impacts, particularly when a number of rallies occur at the same time in the same locality. 

2.11.66

The Article 4 Direction removes permitted development rights within the AONB for caravan rallies which are organised by exempt organisations for a maximum of 5 days. Individual planning applications for reinstatement of permitted development rights will be considered on their merits and having regard to the need to ensure an appropriate distribution within the AONB and throughout the season. The situation will be regularly monitored to ensure that the cumulative impacts of such development are within acceptable levels.

2.11.67

Established rally sites are those with a continuous planning history of rally permissions annually.

Policy TR 12: STORAGE OF CARAVANS –

Proposals for the storage of caravans within the AONB will only be permitted within existing barns, sheds or other suitable enclosed building that is demonstrated to be redundant or surplus to requirements of a farm business or any other existing employment/business operation.

Outside of the AONB, proposals for the storage of caravans will be permitted in unobtrusive locations.

 

2.11.68

The Policy recognises the benefits of reducing the need to tow caravans long distances. 

2.11.69

Storage of caravans will only be permitted where demand for the original use of the building has ceased. In order to prevent the proliferation of buildings in the countryside the storage of caravans is restricted to existing buildings. 

2.11.70

Permission will not be granted for new barns, shed or buildings on a farm if an existing structure is used for caravan storage.

2.11.71

Unobtrusive storage locations are those which are not prominent, and are well screened by existing landscape features.

Policy TR 13: RESIDENTIAL USE OF HOLIDAY ACCOMMODATION –

In the countryside proposals for the change of use of static caravans from holiday accommodation to residential dwellings will not be supported.

Within settlement limits proposals for the residential use of holiday accommodation will only be permitted where the premises and curtilage are suitable in terms of size, structure, amenity, garden area, parking provision and access. 

2.11.72

Holiday chalets and caravans make an important contribution to the tourism industry of the County and the Council will resist their loss to permanent residential accommodation as it would undermine the original reason for granting planning permission and erode the range and choice of accommodation available for visitors. 

2.11.73

Most holiday chalets are located in chalet parks at Limeslade, Caswell, Oxwich, Scurlage and Horton, however there are a number dispersed throughout the countryside, particularly within the Gower Fringe. The majority of these are restricted in size, have limited amenity/garden area, car parking provision and sub -standard access arrangements. They are therefore generally unsuitable for permanent residential accommodation and should not be the primary or sole residence of any occupant.  

2.11.74

There are a significant number of static caravan and cabin sites throughout the County, the majority being located within the Gower Peninsula. Most have holiday use restrictions attached to the permission. The permanent residential use of static caravans on sites with holiday use restrictions will be not be permitted, in order to maintain the stock of holiday accommodation within the County.

2.12

TRANSPORT, MOVEMENT AND CONNECTIVITY

Policy T 1: TRANSPORT MEASURES AND INFRASTRUCTURE –

Development must be supported by appropriate transport measures and infrastructure, and depending on the nature, scale and siting of the proposal will be required to:

i. Strategic Development Areas and relevant H 1 sites must prioritise the delivery of the key transport measures and schemes identified in the Transport Measures Priority Schedule, which must be delivered in an efficient and timely manner in accordance with development phases;

ii. Be designed to provide safe and efficient access to the transport network, which includes the Active Travel, public transport and street networks;

iii. Safeguard, enhance and expand the active travel network, particularly by means of improving connectivity;

iv. Reduce reliance on car use by maximising the potential of movement to/from the development by public transport, including for the urban area ensuring developments are located a walkable distance to a public transport access point on a route with a high frequency service;

v. Ensure all new transport measures are designed as integral elements by means of a Placemaking approach;

vi. Deliver new transport infrastructure and improvement measures required to mitigate the impact of the development; and

vii. Ensure developments are served by appropriate parking provision and circulation areas, including adequate road widths to allow access for service vehicles.

Development that would have an unacceptable impact on the safe and efficient operation of the transport network will not be permitted. 

2.12.1

This Strategic Policy emphasises that movement, connectivity and legibility of transport links are critical components in the creation of a successful place and an efficient transport network is critical to support economic growth. The ‘transport network’ refers to the links and services that help people move across the County, including the highway, public transport, pedestrian and cycle routes, PROWs and bridle routes.

2.12.2

The Plan represents an opportunity to set out a coherent approach to land use and transport planning that addresses the County’s transport needs in the context of future growth as well as existing constraints and issues on the network. A Strategic Transport Study undertaken for the Council by consultants highlights a number of measures considered important to implement as part of a joined up approach to land use and transport planning, including corridor improvements, the importance of a connected and coordinated public transport system on key corridors and the improvement of the Active Travel network. Development will be required to deliver, or contribute towards where appropriate, Active Travel schemes, public transport measures, road infrastructure, and other transport measures, in accordance with the Transport Measures Priority Schedule (see Appendices), which emanates from the recommendations of the Strategic Transport Study. Where necessary, planning obligations will be sought to ensure that the effects of developments are fully addressed in order to make the development acceptable. Transport measures and infrastructure will need to be delivered in a timely manner to meet the needs of existing and planned communities.  

2.12.3

The Council recognises that any development growth will likely result in greater levels of traffic, and that increased congestion is likely to occur if appropriate mitigating transport measures and infrastructure are not delivered. The Strategic Transport Assesment was commissioned by the Council to consider the impact of Plan proposals and help guide and inform the process of delivering land allocations by means of modelling and quantifying the transport impact of these proposals. This Assesment has been important in providing a thorough assessment in the likely impact of the Plan’s strategy for growth and proposing some of the mitigating measures that may be required.  

2.12.4

The Council will require developments to meet high standards of accessibility.  Urban developments should normally be within a walkable 400 metres from a public transport access point, on a route with a weekday 20 minute or better frequency.  Urban developments are those within an established settlement, as defined by the Urban Settlement Boundary as shown on the Proposals Map, and not within the countryside or identified Key Villages.  In more rural environments, a lack of public transport access needs to be balanced against the contribution the proposal would make towards the rural economy of that area.  Development in rural locations should preferably be sited within and adjoining settlements that benefit from key services and facilities, rather than at sporadic countryside locations.

2.12.5

The above Policy highlights the requirement for improvements and expansion of the Active Travel and public transport networks to be integrated into proposals, to facilitate modal shift to non-car travel and help promote physical activity, which is a key aim of the Healthy City Swansea agenda. Making Active Travel for transit and leisure a more attractive prospect will ensure improved health and well-being outcomes in addition to contributing to lower levels of traffic. Similarly, ensuring public transport as a credible alternative to the private car in terms of convenience will assist in the reduction of congestion on key transport corridors. 

2.12.6

The existing highway network experiences traffic congestion along certain main routes and junctions, which can have a negative impact on amenity, health and well-being and economic competitiveness. Poor air quality is a key issue in some parts of the County, with AQMA having been designated. Improved traffic measures, better Active Travel opportunities and increased overall connectivity can help improve air quality by preventing the proliferation of car based traffic due to new development.

2.12.7

All transport measures must be positively integrated into the places which they serve or pass through. They must also address the user hierarchy rather than just designing for vehicles.

2.12.8

Developments will also be expected, where the Council deems the potential transport implications significant, to produce a comprehensive Transport Assessment and Travel Plan. These must consider all modes of transport, inclusive of Active Travel, and develop a strategy to manage traffic demand and transportation impacts caused by the proposal.

Policy T 2: ACTIVE TRAVEL –

Development must take opportunities to enhance walking and cycling access by incorporating within the site, and/or making financial contributions towards the delivery off-site of, the following measures as appropriate:

i. Permeable, legible, direct, convenient, attractive and safe walking and cycling routes that connect the proposed development to: surrounding settlements; public transport nodes; community facilities; commercial and employment areas; tourism facilities; and leisure opportunities;

ii. Improvements, connections, and/or extensions to: existing PROWs (particularly bridleways); the Wales Coastal Path; the Cycle Swansea Bay routes; National Cycle Network Routes 4 and 43; Safe Routes to School; shared use paths; and routes forming part of the green infrastructure network;

iii. The delivery of infrastructure designed in accordance with standards of good practice; and

iv. Facilities that encourage the uptake of walking and cycling, including but not limited to: appropriate signage; secure and convenient cycle parking; and changing and shower Swansea Local Development Plan facilities.

Developments must not have a significant adverse impact on Public Rights of Way or existing routes identified by the Active Travel (Wales) Act (2013)’s Swansea Integrated Network Map and should be designed to help deliver the Council’s Active Travel Plan.  

2.12.9

The purpose of this Policy is to improve the current Active Travel Network and exploit the County’s potential for further routes, by ensuring developments include design features and facilities that make it easy and safe for people to walk and cycle for everyday journeys instead of travelling by car. Encouraging ‘Active Travel’ will help to minimise car use, support the Healthy City Swansea agenda and enable the Council to fulfil its legal duty under the Active Travel (Wales) Act to develop, improve and maintain local walking and cycling networks. Standards of good practice include the Active Travel Act Design Standards and other relevant guidance that provide a steer for developers to ensure key principles of design are employed to deliver Active Travel

2.12.10

The Policy should be read in conjunction with Plan policies relating to Placemaking and masterplanning to ensure that developments give priority to walking and cycling within their design and layout. High quality design will be essential to ensure walking and cycling is seen as an attractive, viable and convenient travel option. Strategic Development Areas present a particularly valuable opportunity to integrate Active Travel measures and enhance connectivity to the existing network.

2.12.11

National Cycle Network Routes 4 and 43 pass through the County, and additions have been made. However, there are a number of missing links that need to be provided. These are illustrated in the Appendices and defined as:

i. Kingsbridge Link;

ii. Pontarddulais Link;

iii. Cwm Level Link;

iv. Morfa Road;

v. Tawe Riverside Link; 

vi. Tidal Lagoon Access Link; 

vii. UWTSD Active Travel Infrastructure;

viii. Swansea Vale East-West Green Corridor link;

ix. Ynys Tawe Link;

x. Birchgrove.

2.12.12

In addition to transit benefits the Policy will also help encourage horse riding, walking and cycling for leisure, however the main aim is to ensure a County wide strategic network of connected, convenient and safe routes for commuters, not a proliferation of unconnected leisure trails.

2.12.13

The County’s segment of the All Wales Coast Path will be safeguarded from development along its route. Meaningful connections to the coast path from settlement areas and beyond will be sought to improve connectivity to the coastal landscape. Connections to other access routes, inclusive of the Cycle Network will also be encouraged, to further add to the connectivity of the Coastal Path. Proposals for additional connections to the Coast Path must ensure that there will be no detrimental impacts to the All Wales Coast Path, inclusive of character, safety and convenience. Any anticipated issues must be fully mitigated against or improvement measures undertaken in advance of any connections being developed.

2.12.14

Bridleways also contribute to connectivity within the County, not merely to facilitate horse riding, but they are enjoyed and utilised by a range of users, inclusive of walkers and cyclists. Any development must not jeopardise existing bridleways, and, as for any other existing Active Travel route, must seek to facilitate connections appropriate to the setting of the existing bridleway.

Policy T 3: STRATEGIC BUS BASED RAPID TRANSIT –

In order to ensure the delivery of efficient, safe and high quality public transit, provision will be made to facilitate the functional integration of the following proposed bus based rapid transit measures with proposed areas of development:

i. High frequency (5 per hour) services on 5 cross city routes as follows:

a. City Centre to Mumbles via Singleton Hospital and Swansea University

b. City Centre to Gorseinon/Pontarddulais Via Fforestfach

c. City Centre to Pantlassau/Felindre via Llangyfelach

d. Pantlassau/Felindre to City Centre via Morriston Hospital, Morriston and Landore

e. City Centre to Skewen and Briton Ferry via Fabian Way and Swansea University Bay Campus

ii. A less frequent orbital bus service (minimum 2 per hour) connecting existing nodes and proposed development areas at: Morriston to Llansamlet; Llansamlet to the City Centre via Swansea Local Development Plan Winch Wen; City Centre to Swansea University; and Swansea University to Morriston via Llangyfelach.

Further improvements, to link to, or expand upon the above bus priority infrastructure measures will be required where these are necessary to provide sustainable travel options and address the impacts of any new development. 

2.12.15

A bus frequency of 5 per hour (i.e. every 12 minutes) is generally recognised as being the minimum for a ‘turn-up-and-go’ service which can attract travellers in significant numbers necessary to deliver the targeted shift to public transport. It is relevant that the Swansea Metro service (from Morriston Hospital to Singleton Hospital/Swansea University on Mumbles Road) has a 15 minute frequency.

2.12.16

The high frequency routes are identified on the plan as shown in the Appendices. Services on these routes will follow a largely radial pattern serving the City Centre and its surrounding major attractors, travelling through the City Centre but not necessarily terminate at this location, as in some instances services will connect to key destinations elsewhere such as employment areas in the east of the County. 

2.12.17

The high frequency routes will require bus priority measures, including high quality bus stops at a distance of around 500-600m from each other, in order to minimise journey speed while retaining good catchment around stops. Real time information for passengers should also be provided. 

2.12.18

Forthcoming guidance relating to Swansea’s Strategic Bus Based Rapid Transit Corridors will further detail the transport infrastructure aspirations and requirements of the Council.

Policy T 4: TRANSPORT INTERCHANGES –

The delivery of new or enhanced transport interchanges will be supported where they would serve to reduce the length and amount of journeys by car and help to minimise travel demand, including:

i. Enhanced rail park and ride facilities at Gowerton and Llansamlet Rail Stations, including the provision of increased parking opportunities;

ii. Strategically located bus based park and ride facilities, supported by frequent, high quality bus services on key corridors;

iii. High quality passenger facilities including, but not limited to: seating; information; refreshment facilities; toilets; and cycle parking;

iv. Facilities for interchange with water based transport; and

v. Enhanced rail freight facilities.

Where necessary, developers will be required to fund appropriate enhancements to existing bus or rail interchange facilities, and the delivery of high quality Swansea Local Development Plan and convenient linkages to relevant interchanges in order to maximise their propensity to attract users and reduce journeys by car.  

 

2.12.19

A transport interchange allows the transfer of travel modes to either bus, rail, or in limited circumstances water based transport. Providing for convenient and efficient interchange between transport modes is vital for making sustainable travel options more attractive and practical. The Policy provides for all forms of transport interchange that could help deliver the shift from the private car, including encouragement to use local rail services linking Gowerton and Llansamlet stations to High Street Station.

2.12.20

There is also significant potential to use the River Tawe to link the Liberty Stadium and Copperworks strategic regeneration site to the City Centre via river buses. 

2.12.21

In addition to providing increased numbers of parking bays, enhancements to park and ride facilities should focus on enhancing the passenger experience including convenience, safety and overall quality, including refreshment facilities and toilets.

2.12.22

Implementation of the Policy will help to reduce pollution arising from road traffic, which would have a corresponding positive effect on health and wellbeing.

Policy T 5: DESIGN PRINCIPLES FOR TRANSPORT MEASURES AND INFRASTRUCTURE –

All proposals must ensure that the design of development, together with any supporting transport measures and infrastructure:

i. Maximises the accessibility of the site via public transport and Active Travel;

ii. Provides suitable facilities and a safe, attractive environment for pedestrians, cyclists and other non-motorised modes of transport;

iii. Allows for the safe, efficient and effective movement of vehicles, inclusive of service vehicles;

iv. Minimises vehicle speeds where appropriate;

v. Considers the place and movement of any transport infrastructure in line with Streets Hierarchy and User Hierarchy concepts to ensure appropriately designed transport infrastructure;

vi. Does not encourage extraneous traffic unless there is a specific strategic need for an access route through the area;

vii. Does not give rise to any significant adverse effect on the natural heritage, and the historic and cultural environment is preserved and enhanced;

viii. Maintains the character of rural lanes and public paths; ix. Complies with the principles of accessibility Access For All;

x. Accords with standards of good practice, including the Active Travel Act Design Standards; and

xi. Considers, and responds to, the findings of any relevant Travel Plan and/or Transport Assessment.  

2.12.23

The design and function of streets must be treated as an integral aspect of place making and must not be considered in isolation. Therefore the User Hierarchy (see Figure 8), as featured in Manual for Streets will be utilised in assessing the transport and access aspects of proposals. Favourable consideration will be given to developments which, through their design and layout, give priority to movements by active transport and public transport, whilst appreciating the demands of service vehicles, such as refuse and recycling collection vehicles.  Room for such vehicles must be properly designed for in any development and they should not be expected to reverse into or from a highway to undertake collections.  Where necessary appropriate turning heads, with measures to ensure they are kept clear, will need to be included.

2.12.24

It is also critical for all developments to consider the Streets Hierarchy (see Figure 9) when designing new development. The Place function of a street helps determine what users are encouraged and what speeds are enforced, either through design or regulation. The distinct character of streets and linkages, for example, rural lanes must be maintained as such and not urbanised. Development proposals that include requirements to set back to improvement lines, remove hedgerows, and provide new access and visibility splays likely to result in a loss of character will be resisted. The form of any necessary and acceptable works should be appropriate to the rural area and not add urban character to the landscape. The Spine Streets will provide place and movement functions. They will provide safe, legible and attractive ‘movement corridors’ for all travel modes at the heart of the new walkable neighbourhoods, which adds character and contributes to good standards of amenity. Spine Streets will be lined by active frontages of residential uses and community infrastructure throughout the developed area. They should have a design speed of 30mph within the developed area and 20mph in sensitive areas with crossing points on desire lines as well as traffic calming measures at appropriate locations. They should provide focal points within the public realm and points of access to various character areas of the development. Whilst Spine Streets will not have the character of a typical ‘A road’ bypass, they can deliver benefits across the transport network in terms of providing an alternative diversionary route for journeys that do not begin or end at a location near the Spine Street.

2.12.25

Residential developments are expected to be permeable and legible environments for pedestrians to safely traverse, away from high speed vehicular traffic. Similarly connections for Active Travel must be integral to the site wide design of any significant residential development. 

Policy T 6: PARKING –

Proposals must be served by appropriate parking provision, in accordance with maximum parking standards, and consider the requirements for cycles, cars, motorcycles and service vehicles. In those instances where sufficient parking cannot be provided on site, or is judged not to be appropriate, the developer will be required to provide a financial contribution towards alternative transport measures where appropriate.

The provision of secure cycle parking and associated facilities will be sought in all major development schemes, inclusive of residential, business and retail in addition to any proposed transport interchanges.

Proposals on existing car parks that would reduce parking provision will not be permitted where the loss of the parking facility would:

i. Compromise highway safety;

ii. Adversely affect accessibility and/or the free flow of traffic; or

iii. Significantly reduce parking provision for residents, businesses or visitors in the absence of any appropriate alternative parking opportunities.

2.12.26

The requirement to ensure appropriate parking is provided to serve developments needs to be balanced against the recognition that the availability of parking spaces, and any charges applied, are key tools in facilitating a reduction in journeys by private car and encouraging a change in mode choice towards more sustainable means of travel. 

2.12.27

For the purposes of this Policy, the reference to ‘appropriate’ in respect of the quantum of parking refers to that which is consistent with adopted Parking SPG Guidelines, and which encourage a safe environment for road users. The Parking SPG identifies maximum parking standards and also provides guidance on developer contributions, Transport Assessments, Travel Plans and facilities for disabled people. 

2.12.28

Applications will be refused where the likelihood of on-street parking occurring will give rise to unacceptable vehicle congestion impacts and/or highway safety concerns. On-street car parking can cause problems by reducing road width, thereby affecting the free flow of traffic and adding to hazards for cars, cyclists and pedestrians. In some instances this can also impact on the amenity of residents who have to compete for a car parking space. Conversely, on street parking can act as informal traffic calming, help to generate street activity and encourage social interaction and natural surveillance. Therefore the type of parking provision should be demonstrated to be appropriate to the place, and serve an identified purpose. Where on street parking is proposed, then the street width should be sufficient to allow movement and parking without adding hazard or impacting on amenity.

2.12.29

Garages and car ports must be of an acceptable Swansea Local Development Plan size and comfortably accommodate a private car, otherwise they will not be considered a parking space. Any garages are advised to be a minimum of 3 meters wide x 6 metres long. 

2.12.30

It is expected that there will be sufficient space for residents to park on their property, however visitors could be accommodated off-site if the highway conditions are favourable and safe to accommodate such on street parking. Large schemes where new access is required should consider this when planning streets. Narrow streets will not be favoured where there is limited on-site parking. 

2.12.31

Proposals for small scale development and infill sites must have particular regard to the potential adverse impact of increased levels of on-street parking in the case of residential development where the existing road layout and design is unlikely to satisfactorily cope with any additional parking pressures. 

2.12.32

Financial contributions towards alternative transport measures includes measures designed to improve public transport, cycling and walking, and the public realm in general and need not therefore be limited to covering the provision of off-site parking. These financial contributions will be sought for developments within the sustainable City Centre location, in addition to highly accessible areas that are unable to provide appropriate levels of parking provision.

2.12.33

Rural and Urban areas have different levels of dependability on the private car. It is not expected that rural development would provide the same level of public transport frequency as urban development. A flexible approach will be taken on that basis with regard given to the location’s context. 

2.12.34

In locations with particularly good access to public transport and Active Travel routes, consideration will be given to a reduction of the maximum standard, but only where it is clearly demonstrated to be appropriate.

2.12.35

A degree of flexibility in the operation of existing guidelines may be appropriate where:

1. It would assist in achieving higher scheme quality, and/or

2. It would serve the promotion of the beneficial use of underused buildings, especially upper floors (as in the case of “over the shop” and other City/District Centre residential development);

3. Swansea Central Area developments have been vacant for long periods of time and a relaxation of the parking requirements would contribute to the wider regeneration strategy for the City Centre. 

2.12.36

In assessing whether to apply a degree of flexibility, consideration will be given to:

1. The nature of the development;

2. Capacity of the site;

3. Location of the site;

4. Traffic and servicing conditions; and

5. Availability of public transport.

2.12.37

Applications seeking redevelopment of a car park facility, or change of use from car parking, must be accompanied by justification and evidence as to the assessed impact, and demonstrate why the facility is superfluous to requirements. Car Parks which are demonstrated to have an overriding value to the locality. For local residents, local retail units - (especially those within defined District or Local Centres), local businesses, leisure opportunities inclusive of open spaces, tourism and car parks which facilitate mix modal journeys( i.e. journeys which can be split between the private car and public transport or Active Travel) will be safeguarded.

Policy T 7: PUBLIC RIGHTS OF WAY AND RECREATIONAL ROUTES –

Development that significantly adversely affects the character, safety, enjoyment and convenient use of a PROW will only be permitted where an acceptable alternative route is identified and provided.

Linkages, and where appropriate extensions, to the existing PROW network will be expected from all new developments, which must have regard to the existing character of the PROW and the aspiration to improve access for all. 

2.12.38

The Council is committed to its statutory duty to protect the County’s PROW network for public access and recreational purposes. Furthermore many PROWs are historic features in their own right and are part of the Green InfrastructureNetwork supporting many ecosystem services. The grant of planning permission does not provide consent to alter a PROW. It must be diverted or stopped up by order and a separate application must be made to the Council for any alteration. A diversion order must be confirmed before the development takes place. Where necessary, planning conditions will be used to ensure that development does not commence before arrangements have been made to provide an adequate alternative route. If diversion of a PROW is necessary to allow development to take place, an alternative route must be identified and incorporated into the planning application. 

2.12.39

In addition to statutory responsibilities for the PROW network, the above Policy seeks to facilitate new or improved off road public access routes. Any development that would unacceptably obstruct and/or adversely affect the enjoyment of an existing or proposed new route will be resisted, unless an acceptable alternative route is confirmed in advance of development taking place. This is in accordance with the Council’s Countryside Access Plan. It also supports aims to promote recreational access to urban greenspace and the countryside.

2.12.40

The stopping up of a PROW will only be considered in exceptional circumstances. Such circumstances will only apply to developments that bring substantial economic or social benefits to the community and where it can be demonstrated that those benefits outweigh the loss of the PROW. In such circumstances also, developers will be expected to demonstrate that no alternative route can be developed. PROW’s can only be stopped by a legal order, meeting the legal test that they are no longer needed for public access.

2.12.41

In-line with the Public Rights of Way Improvement Plan, possibilities for the improvement or extension of public access opportunities will be examined when considering all development proposals. Developers will be encouraged to provide links to any adjoining PROW network from new developments. New developments must become more accessible and encourage travel by means other than the private car. It is important to ensure that all new or improved routes do not damage the local landscape or environment, nor local resident and visitor amenity. When considering development proposals there will be a concentrated and balanced assessment of local character and accessibility. Careful consideration will also be given to signage, surfacing and engineering work. In addition, standards of design on the PROW network must take into account people with mobility difficulties, the young and the elderly. 

2.12.42

Requirements in relation to the CROW Act extend the public’s right of access to the countryside. In considering proposals for new access rights, consideration will be given to guidance from the Local Access Forum and the Countryside Access Plan (Rights Of Way Improvement Plan).

Policy T 8: CANAL NETWORK –

Swansea’s Canal Network, and any potential links to the River Tawe or the Prince of Wales Dock, will be preserved and enhanced.

Development should enhance the setting and safety of the Canal Network and must not:

  1. adversely affect the conservation and operation of canal infrastructure;
  2. discourage canal use for recreation and water supply; or
  3. prevent canal reinstatement.
2.12.43

There are two canals in the County, the Swansea Canal and the Tennant Canal. The canals form an important part of the County’s heritage and are significant for biodiversity and landscape reasons, while providing opportunities for regeneration, Active Travel and recreation as part of the wider Green Infrastructure Network.

2.12.44

Significant lengths of the canals exist to navigable standards. There are some gaps in the network where parts of the canals have been lost. Reconnecting them to form an integrated network is considered to offer regeneration potential through tourism and recreation benefits. A Feasibility Study has investigated the restoration and reopening of the Neath, Tennant and Swansea Canals to create a 32 mile integrated waterway system centred on Swansea Docks, which could serve a national tourism market. The preferred route of this network is safeguarded on the Constraints and Issues Map, including the missing canal links to ensure that the opportunity for their reinstatement is not obstructed by development. Where the line protects a missing canal link, a minimum width of 15 metres should be allowed for the canal route by development proposals to accommodate a 6 metre channel, 3 metre shared pedestrian/cycle path, and 3 metre easements either side for access/maintenance.  

2.12.45

Recreational use of the canal network must not be likely to have a significant effect on the Crymlyn Bog SAC. Development in the vicinity of these safeguarded corridors should, through its design, layout and function, enhance the setting of this important part of the Green InfrastructureNetwork. Development proposals may be expected to contribute to the maintenance or enhancement of Green Infrastructure.

Policy T 9 – PORTS AND DOCKS

Development and transport proposals that enhance the viability of the port and docks, and increase appropriate employment and business opportunities, will be permitted provided that such proposals are compatible and/or complementary with surrounding uses and have no significant adverse impact on seascape and natural heritage. 

Click to view area on map

2.12.46

The operational port and docks is an important commercial asset, providing jobs and business opportunities that contribute towards economic regeneration and international trade. The future development and viability of the port and docks is identified as an important consideration for proposals within the Fabian Way Corridor SDA, which is a regional regeneration priority and surrounds the established port. Development proposals within the SDA should be complementary with the established port/docks and consider the principles and proposals set out in the forthcoming SPG for the Fabian Way Corridor.

2.12.47

Proposals for enhancing facilities and operations at the port and docks will be supported where development has suitable regard to issues of amenity, land use compatibility and environmental impact. Whilst considerable Permitted Development (PD) Rights exist for docks related development, where proposals are subject to EIA Regulations, the PD Rights do not apply. Any proposals to alter the water level within the Prince of Wales Docks will be carefully assessed via the Habitats Regulations as there is a direct hydrological link between Crymlyn Bog SAC and the Kings and Queens Docks and Tennant Canal.

2.12.48

Development within the port and docks must safeguard the canal route protection corridor, which aims to link the Tennant Basin with the Prince of Wales Dock and the River Tawe. Additionally, proposals must have regard to safeguarding the rail link to the docks and the potential for future enhancement of the rail freight network, together with wharves which are used for the unloading of marine dredged sand and gravel resources in order to encourage the transport of mineral freight carried by rail or waterway rather than by road, wherever this is economically feasible. This is in order to promote the integration and coordination of transport and land use planning, inclusive of the provision of adequate storage and processing facilities for minerals at the docks, having regard to national planning guidance. 

2.13

ENERGY AND UTILITIES

Policy EU 1: LOCAL SEARCH AREAS –

Proposals for renewable or low carbon energy development will be permitted subject to the following criteria:

i Strategic Search Area (SSA) (Click to view on map)

Within or adjacent to the SSA proposals for wind energy greater than 25MW will be permitted subject to criteria 3 to 5; all other proposals for renewable and low carbon energy will only be permitted where they can demonstrate they would not prejudice the purpose of the SSA.

i i. Local Search Areas (LSAs) Solar PV (Click to view on map)

Within the LSAs, proposals for solar PV between 5 – 50 MW will be permitted subject to criteria 3 to 5. All other proposals for renewable and low carbon energy will only be permitted where they can demonstrate they would not prejudice the purpose of the LSA.

iii. Proposals for all types of renewable and low carbon energy development and associated infrastructure, either on their own, cumulatively or in combination with existing, approved or proposed development, shall comply with all other relevant policies in the LDP and shall not have a significant adverse effect on:

a. The characteristics and features of the proposed location as a result of the siting, design, layout, type of installation and materials used;

b. Public amenity or public accessibility to the area;

c. Radar, Aircraft Operations or Telecommunications;

iv. Carbon sinks, or it can be demonstrated that on-site loss can be adequately mitigated; and

v. Satisfactory mitigation shall be in place to reduce the impact of the proposal and its associated infrastructure; and in the case of solar proposals must mitigate against any impact of glint and glare.  Proposals shall make provision for the restoration and after-care of the land for its beneficial re-use. This will be agreed with the Council prior to the development being carried out. 

vi. Where necessary, additional compensatory benefits will be sought by agreement with the applicants in accordance with Policy IO 1 Supporting Infrastructure. 

2.13.1

The Policy sets out criteria against which all proposals for renewable and low carbon energy development will be assessed, including those relating to on-shore windfarms, Energy from Waste (EfW), Combined Heat and Power (CHP), Biomass, Hydro-Power and Solar technology, at the scale shown in the Table 9: All onshore energy Swansea Local Development Plan projects over 50MW are determined by UK Government based on the National Policy Statements71 and some micro scale projects are permitted development under the General Permitted Development Order. See 2.13.16 for further details. 

Table 9: The scale of Renewable and Low Carbon Energy Development

Scale Development/ Threshold  Wind (on shore) Other
Strategic +25MW +50MW
Local Authority  5 – 25MW 5 – 50MW 
Sub Local Authority

50KW – 5MW

Micro

Below 50KW

71 Planning Policy Wales Edition 10 ,TAN 8 Planning for Renewable Energy (2005) and Tan 12 Design (2016)

2.13.2

The Welsh Government is committed to facilitating the development of renewable energy sources.  National Planning Policy and Guidance72 sets out advice on different types of renewable energy technologies, and the design and locational considerations that developers should have regard to when proposing renewable energy schemes.  National Planning Policy and Guidance also identifies seven Strategic Search Areas (SSA) which are considered to be the most appropriate locations for large scale (>25MW) wind farm developments. Part of Strategic Search Area E: Pontardawe is located within the County.  For the SSA, National Planning Policy and Guidance [1] states that “within (and immediately adjacent to) the SSAs, the implicit objective is to accept landscape change i.e. a significant change in LEAP from wind turbine development”, and this will need to be considered when determining applications in the SSA.  This objective equally applies to the part of the SSA that overlaps with a Special Landscape Area (SLA) as identified in Policy ER 5 Landscape Protection.  In this location, the acceptance of landscape change together with the requirement to meet national targets for renewable energy provision [2] outweighs the importance of protecting landscape of local significance.  In such situations the SLA designation will serve to ensure that any wind turbines as well as their related infrastructure are positioned with minimum intrusion to the locally important landscape.  In addition, the long-term considerations of the SLA designation will also serve to protect the landscape from potentially damaging permanent development.  This overlapping designation will enable the full reinstatement of the special landscape quality following the decommissioning of any wind energy generation development within the SLA.

72 TAN 8 Planning for Renewable Energy (2005)

2.13.3

It is expected that any large scale wind farm proposal would be situated within the SSA, however there may be overriding benefits to siting developments in other locations in the County. Any overriding benefits must be adequately demonstrated by the submission of a detailed assessment alongside any planning application, which must clearly demonstrate the benefits of the chosen site and highlight any negative impacts and their proposed mitigation measures.  

2.13.4

The Council undertook a Renewable Energy Assessment (REA) 73 in 2018 which evaluates the potential energy capacity of renewable and low carbon technologies in the County.  The findings of the REA suggest that there is significant potential within the whole of the County for the development of renewable and low carbon technologies and developers are encouraged to explore all aspects of the County’s capability to contribute to lowering UK carbon emissions within the energy sector.  The potential of each technology in terms of electricity and heat is detailed in the tables 10, 11 and 12 below.  The REA has also highlighted that there are no specific LSAs for wind technology having regard to relevant guidance, inclusive of the Practice Guidance: Planning for Renewable and Low Carbon Energy – a Toolkit for Planners74 .  Not withstanding this, all applications submitted for wind within the County will be assessed against Policy EU 1 Renewable and Low Carbon Energy Developments and any additional relevant LDP policies.  The REA does highlight Solar LSAs which are spatially expressed and shown on the Proposals Map.  These areas are located predominantly to the north of the M4.  These Solar LSAs do not mean an automatic presumption in favour of renewable energy development, but identify the least constrained areas within Swansea following the methodology utilised by the REA.  Proposals within the Solar LSAs will still be assessed by the Council against Policy EU 1 Renewable and Low Carbon Energy Developments and additional relevant LDP policies, having regard to any specific landscape, biodiversity, amenity issues they might raise,  The REA will be kept under review throughout the Plan period.

73 as required by the Welsh Government’s Practical Guidance – Planning for Renewable and Low Carbon Energy – A Toolkit for Planners (2015)  

74 Welsh Government Practice Guidance: Planning for Renewable and Low Carbon Energy – a Toolkit for Planners 

Solar LSA Table

LSA Ref Size KM2 Potential Capacity MW Potential Energy (GWh/yr)
1 1.08  45 39.4
2 1.03  42.9 37.6
3 0.96  40 35.0
4 0.69  28.8 25.2
5 0.57  23.8 20.8
6 0.36  15 13.1
7 0.19 7.9 6.9
8 0.15 6.3 5.5
9 0.07 2.9 2.6
10 0.06  2.5 2.2
11 0.06  2.5 2.2
SLA Total   5.22 217.5 190.6

Renewable Electricity Potential Table

Energy Technology Capacity Factor Accessible Resource Current Installed Capacity Total Scenarios for 2025
Low 15%  High 50% 
    MWe GWh/y MWe GWh/y MWe GWh/y MWe GWh/y
Onshore wind 0.27 40.6 96.0 - - 6.1 - 20.3 48
Energy crops  0.9 34.74 273.9 - - 5.21 35.69 17.37 118.95
Efw 0.9 4.19 33 - - 0.63 4.95 2.10 16.5
Landfill gas 0.6 - - - - - - - -
AD (animal) 0.9 0.1 0.75 - - 0.02 0.11 0.05 0.38
AD (food)  0.9 - - - - - - - -
Sewage 0.42 0.89 3.3 - - 0.13 0.49 0.45 1.65
Hydropower 0.37 - - - - - - - -
Building integrated  0.1 46.9 41 - - 7.03 6.15 23.45 2.05
PV 0.1 217.5 190.6 30 262.8 32.6 28.6 108.8 95.3
Currently Installed           30 262.8 30 262.8
Total N/A 344.6 638.6 30 262.8 81.7 353.2 202.5 564.1

Local authority projected electricity demand in 2010

937.5 GWh

Percentage electricity demand in 2020 potentially made by renewable energy resources    37.7%   60.2% 

Renewable Heat Potential Table

Energy Technology Capacity Factor Accessible Resource
 
Current Installed Capacity
 
Total Scenarios for 202
        Low 15% High 50%
    MWe GWh/y MWe GWh/y MWe GWh/y MWe GWh/y
Biomass CHP or large scale heat (energy crops) 0.5 69.48 304.3 - - 10.4 45.6 34.74 152.15
Biomass CHP or large scale heat (AD) 0.5 0.14 0.6 - - 0.02 0.9 0.07 0.3
Biomass CHP or large scale heat (wood fuel) 0.5 48 20 - - 7.2 3 24 10
Heat from Swansea Local Development Plan EfW (CHP or Heat only) 0.5 8.37 37 - - 1.3 5.6 4.185 18.5
BIR (solar water heating, biomass boilers, heat pumps) 0.2 23.4 41 - - 3.5 6.1 11.7 20.5
Total N/A 149.39 402.3 - - 22.42 61.2 74.695 201.45
Local authority projected electricity demand in 2020

1956.3GWh

Percentage electricity demand in 2020 potentially me by renewable energy resources - 3.1%  - 10.3%
2.13.5

Development management considerations for renewable energy proposals are set out in National Planning Policy and Guidance75 . Additional specific local criteria set out in Policy EU 1 and Low Carbon Energy Developments which must be considered relating to: siting, public amenity., proposals for restoration and carbon sinks, interference with radar, aircraft operations and telecommunications. The Plan should be read as a whole and other relevant detailed policies in the Plan will support consideration of renewable energy proposals (for example in relation to impacts on the transport network).

75 Further detailed guidance is contained in the Practice Guidance Planning Implications of Renewable and Low Carbon Energy Development 

2.13.6

Developers will be expected to submit a report which sets out how each of the national and local considerations have been addressed, especially with regard to local features and characteristics. This may include a Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment, or where the proposal affects the historic environment a Heritage Impact Statement. 76

76 Further guidance on micro generation in historic buildings can be found in the Cadw publication ‘Renewable energy and your historic building’ 

2.13.7

The impacts of Glint and Glare, specifically for Solar PV developments must be considered. Glint is produced as a consequence of the direct reflection of the sun on the surface of a solar PV panel and/or the frame. Glare is a continuous source of brightness. This is not a direct reflection of the sun like Glint, but rather a reflection of the bright sky around the sun. Glare is less intense than glint. The potential impacts upon surrounding uses, should be thoroughly assessed by the applicant at the pre-planning stage.

2.13.8

The cumulative character and visual impacts of proposals are to be considered. The cumulative landscape impacts are the effects of a proposed development on the fabric, character and quality of local features and characteristics and the degree to which a proposed renewable energy development will become a significant or defining characteristic of the locality. 

2.13.9

Cumulative visual impacts concern the degree to which proposed renewable energy development will become a feature in particular views and the impact this has upon the people experiencing those views. This may arise where two or more of the same type of renewable energy developments will be visible from the same point, or will be visible shortly after each other along the same journey. Hence, it should not be assumed that, just because no other sites will be visible from the proposed development site, the proposal will not create any cumulative impacts.

2.13.10

Similarly, any ancillary works should be sensitively and carefully sited, designed, and limited to locations where proposals would not have a significant cumulative effect. Such developments should be sympathetic to the characteristics of the local landform, contours and existing features. 

2.13.11

Provision should be made for the removal of temporary structures, plant and equipment from the site once construction works are completed. When the installation has come to the end of its operational life, all structures, plant, equipment and associated infrastructure should be removed within six months (or a pre-negotiated period) after decommissioning and the land restored to an acceptable standard as agreed prior to consent being granted.

2.13.12

Access to open spaces within the County must be maintained, and where possible improved. Renewable energy installations that unduly restrict access must propose sufficient mitigation measures or facilitate the opening up of other areas for public amenity. The Policy highlights that proposals will be required to ensure that they do not give rise to problems of highway safety or have a detrimental effect on the highway network as a result of construction and maintenance traffic. 

2.13.13

Renewable energy proposals within upland areas are likely to have an impact on peat soils. Peat rich soils act as important carbon stores as protected by Policy ER 1 Climate Change and potentially blanket bog priority habitats as protected by Policy ER 5 Habitats and Species which will be safeguarded by applying the ‘suitable for use’ approach.  Where an unacceptable loss of carbon stores is identified, the requirement for remediation must be calculated in the light of current land use in a local environmental context.  Proposals which are likely to have an impact on peat soils will be required to conduct a site specific risk assessment to be considered as part of the planning application. 

2.13.14

MTAN 2 Coal (2009) states that development proposals should not conflict with areas of safeguarded coal resource which would require that developments should be of a temporary nature and site restoration should not prohibit future mineral development.  National Guidance on the requirements for coal safeguarding has continued to evolve however and the latest position is set out in Planning Policy Wales.

Policy EU 2: RENEWABLE AND LOW CARBON ENERGY TECHNOLOGY IN NEW DEVELOPMENT –

Development will be required to maximise the contribution of renewable or low carbon energy technology to meet the energy demands of the proposal, particularly for Significant Energy Consuming Developments.

Residential developments on sites where there is capacity for 100 homes or more, and non-residential developments with a total floorspace of 1000 sq m or more, will be required to submit a comprehensive Energy Assessment to determine the feasibility of incorporating low carbon or renewable energy installations into the scheme and/or connect to renewable or low carbon energy technology and district heating networks.

2.13.15

Larger development proposals will need to be accompanied by an ‘Energy Assessment’ which investigates the potential to incorporate on-site zero and low carbon equipment and establish connections to existing sources of renewable energy. Opportunities for linking with district heating networks and where appropriate sharing renewable energy with the wider public should also be explored. The Energy Assessment will be required to set out how the proposal can make a contribution towards increased levels of energy generation from renewable or low carbon sources. 

2.13.16

Some micro-generation technologies are permitted development under the General Permitted Development Order. Prior to any assumption of permitted development, Part 40 (installation of domestic micro-generation equipment) and Part 43 (installation of non-domestic micro-generation equipment) should be referred to for further guidance. Developers may wish to undertake a Pre-Application Enquiry for further clarification regarding micro-generation.

Policy EU 3: DISTRICT HEATING AND COOLING –

Significant Energy Consuming Developments will be expected to facilitate the development of, and/or connection to, proposed District Heating and Cooling Networks.

Where the alignment of the route of a proposed District Heating and Cooling Network falls within any part of a development site, the development will be required to provide the necessary infrastructure to deliver part of the Network, or otherwise safeguard land required to accommodate the Network to be implemented at a later date. 

2.13.17

The Policy aims to facilitate proposals for a District Heating Network within the County, the first phase of which is proposed to serve sites within the Swansea Central Area, the purpose of which is to provide a highly sustainable means of heating and cooling developments. 

2.13.18

The Policy will ensure that development is designed in such a way so as to not prejudice the future development of a potentially County wide District Heatingand Cooling Network, and enable development to connect to it at a later date once it becomes operational. The precise alignment of the Network will only be finalised following detailed ground investigations and feasibility assessments. Developers should discuss the alignment with the Council at an early stage to ascertain whether their proposals are likely to be affected.  

2.13.19

Proposed developments within the Swansea Central Area in particular will need to demonstrate how the proposal will facilitate a connection to a District Heating Network, or robustly justify why the connection is not technically and/or economically viable and suggest an alternative approach. All SDA’s defined in Policy SD 1, including the Central Area, are Significant Energy Consuming Developments and are required to explore the potential of district heating and cooling. The North of M4 J46, Llangyfelach SDA (SDA site G) site benefits from proximity for Morriston Hospital, the DVLA offices and a potential Combined Heat and Power (CHP) Facility. 

2.13.20

Waste management proposals must consider the possibility for co-location of a CHP Facility as detailed in Policy RP 8: Sustainable Waste Management.

Policy EU 4: PUBLIC UTILITIES AND NEW DEVELOPMENT –

Development will be permitted where the utility infrastructure is adequate to meet the needs of the development.

Development that requires new or improved utility infrastructure which does not form part of the utility provider’s improvement programme will be permitted where it can be satisfactorily demonstrated that the developer will make an appropriate contribution to secure the provision of the infrastructure. 

2.13.21

National Planning Policy and Guidance makes clear that the provision of adequate and efficient Public Utilities infrastructure, which includes water supply, sewerage infrastructure, electricity and gas, is an important part of creating sustainable communities. Development should be located and implementation planned in a way that allows for the most sustainable use of existing and programmed infrastructure. In areas of deficiency developers may be required to provide a financial contribution towards improvement and/or expansion of existing infrastructure provision. The Infrastructure Delivery Plan sets out necessary infrastructure for the delivery of the Plan. 

2.13.22

DCWW has confirmed that following completion of improvement schemes as part of their ongoing asset management programme, sufficient capacity is available at Swansea Bay WwTW and Gowerton WwTW to accommodate the scale of growth proposed in LDP allocations over the Plan period. In order to accommodate all proposed development within the Llannant and Southgate catchment areas, reinforcement work may be required at these particular waste water treatment works. Any such requirement will be considered as part of DCWW’s long term Asset Management Plans (AMP). AMP 7 will be reviewed in 2019 and will cover the period 2020-2025.

2.13.23

Developers can accelerate the provision of reinforcement works via the requisition provisions of the Water Industry Act (WIA) 1991 or via Planning Obligations Agreements under the TCPA 1990. It should be noted that the requisition provision of the WIA 1991 only applies to water and sewerage network reinforcement works. Funding to deliver reinforcement works at a Wastewater Treatment Works (WWTW) can be delivered via Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.

2.13.24

In some locations insufficient hydraulic capacity exists in the wastewater network and development may be required to undertake hydraulic modelling assessment (HMA) to establish suitable connection points and/or necessary reinforcement works to enable the site to connect. The reinforcement work may take the form of a hard engineering upgrade or the removal of surface water from combined sewers.

2.13.25

Some off-site water mains/public sewers may be required to service development sites.

2.13.26

Within the Gowerton WwTWs catchment area, there is a specific issue with combined sewer overflows and water quality. This issue is addressed in Policy RP 4 Water Pollution and the Protection of Water Quality.

Policy EU 5: TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY INFRASTRUCTURE –

Proposals for telecommunications and digital technology infrastructure will be considered in the light of technical and operational requirements and permitted where:

i. The development contributes towards the objectives of future proofing development and regeneration proposals or forms part of the planned development of a wider network;

ii. The development incorporates all reasonable measures to minimise any significant adverse impact due to the siting and external appearance of the apparatus, and the design minimises impact caused by its visual appearance;

iii. There would be no significant adverse effect on natural heritage, the historic environment, or amenity of neighbouring residents;

iv. The application is accompanied by evidence of compliance with Government guidelines on health impacts of telecommunications infrastructure; 

2.13.27

Harnessing the transformational power of digital communications is central to Swansea Bay City Region’s plans to accelerate growth in the region. Modern, fast, affordable and secure telecommunications and future proofed digital connectivity infrastructure can stimulate business innovation, enable high-value economic activity and drive-up productivity. For residents, it can transform their communications, home computing, on-line shopping, entertainment facilities, as well as enable effective home working and trading. The potential benefits that telecommunications and digital communications can offer individuals and organisations are recognised, for example in terms of working from home, which can assist in creating a sustainable future by reducing the need to travel.

2.13.28

Telecommunication facilities may have special needs and technical considerations, which require them to be installed in particular locations to work effectively. However in sensitive locations the erection of telecommunication towers and antennae can have a significant adverse effect on the quality of the urban and rural environment. Clear guidance with respect to the development of telecoms infrastructure is contained within National Planning Policy and Guidance77, which is not repeated in this Policy. Applications for telecoms and digital infrastructure developments will also be assessed against national planning policy and guidance. In accordance with national planning policy, the Council encourages operators to share telecoms masts. Operators will be required to submit evidence that opportunities for mast sharing and alternativesites have been fully explored. Careful siting, design and disguise, including landscaping and screening, can make developments less obtrusive and enable them to blend in with their surroundings. For proposals within the Gower AONB reference should be made to the Joint Accord produced by the Association of National Park Authorities, the National Association for Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty78 and the Mobile Phone Network Operators.

77 Planning Policy Wales, Edtion 10 and TAN 19 Telecommunications (2002)

78 Gower AONB Management Plan 2016, paragraph 3:50

2.14

RESOURCES AND PUBLIC HEALTH PROTECTION

Policy RP 1: SAFEGUARDING PUBLIC HEALTH AND NATURAL RESOURCES –

Development that would result in significant risk to: life; human health and well-being; property; controlled waters; or the natural and historic environment, will not be permitted, particularly in respect of:

i. Air, noise or light pollution;

ii. Flood risk;

iii. The quality or quantity of water resources;

iv. Land contamination;

v. Land instability or subsidence;

vi. Sustainable development of mineral resources; and

vii. Sustainable waste management.

Development judged to have a significant adverse effect on the integrity of any European Designated Sites, either alone or in combination with other plans or projects, will not be permitted.

2.14.1

This Strategic Policy seeks to ensure that the County’s natural environment is protected from materially harmful development. This relates particularly to the effect of development on air, noise, light and water quality. The Policy also seeks to ensure that potential risks to human health associated with development in flood risk areas and the redevelopment or remediation of contaminated/unstable land, or development within the statutory consultation zones stipulated by HSE for hazardous installations, are fully identified and assessed.  

2.14.2

The acceptability of adverse effects will depend on the nature of the development and the location, with the most sensitive sites, such as residential areas, being more vulnerable. In some circumstances adverse effects can be mitigated to make the development acceptable. However, in the case of flood risk the Council will adopt a sustainable approach to flooding by avoiding development within flood risk areas in line with National Planning Policy and Guidance79

79 Planning Policy Wales and TAN 15 Development and Flood Risk

2.14.3

For the purpose of the Plan, flood risk areas include those areas with significant flood defence infrastructure (TAN 15 Developent and Flood Risk (2004)Categories C1 & C2 refers). Areas at risk of flooding from rivers are identified on Development Advice Maps.80

80 Natural Resources Wales  - Developement Advice Map

2.14.4

The area-wide policies in this section set out further detail of how adverse impacts of development should be addressed, and the extent to which they can be minimised through the provision of mitigation and enhancements. 

2.14.5

The improvement of environmental quality as a result of development is positively encouraged. This can be achieved, for example, through: the remediation of contaminated land as part of redevelopment; the use SuDS which can achieve betterment in the reduction of surface water run-off and ultimately reduce flood risk; or replacing existing obtrusive lighting with a low level scheme.

2.14.6

The following environmental constraints are identified on the Constraints and Issues Map and will be regularly updated:

and

2.14.7

Pollution may cause significant risk to human health, quality of life, residential amenity, and the natural and historic environment. The Plan seeks to ensure that development that would result in significantly high levels of air, noise or light pollution are appropriately located away from residential areas, other sensitive developments and areas of landscape, natural environment and heritage importance. The Plan also seeks to ensure that incompatible development and land uses are not located close to existing sources of potential pollution. Where air and noise pollution are generated from the same source they should be considered and addressed together and appropriate regard should also be had to the Plan’s transport and Active Travel policies and other relevant Council strategies for reducing vehicular use. The Plan’s green infrastructure policies will also ensure that appropriate provision is made in new developments for addressing the cumulative impacts of air and noise pollution.

2.14.8

Where possible planning conditions will be used to minimise environmental harm and achieve environmental enhancement. The Council will look to the statutory environmental agencies to use their anti-pollution legislative powers to monitor and enforce against discharges, noise and other nuisances.

Policy RP 2: NOISE POLLUTION –

Where development could lead to exposure to a source of noise pollution it must be demonstrated that appropriate mitigation measures will be implemented, and incorporated into the design of the development to minimise the effects on existing and future occupants.
 
Noise sensitive developments will not be permitted unless effective and appropriate mitigation is carried out to prevent exposure to existing noise generating uses.  Development will not be permitted if it would cause, or result in, a significant increase in levels of environmental noise in an identified Noise Action Planning Priority Area, or would have unacceptable impacts on an identified Quiet Area or the characteristics of tranquillity that led to the designation of a Quiet Area.
2.14.9

Environmental Noise is dealt with under the Environmental Noise Directive81. A Noise Action Plan82 has been prepared for the whole of Wales that identifies Noise Action Planning Priority Areas (NAPPAs ) where residential properties are experiencing high levels of environmental noise. Within these areas developers will be required to demonstrate that appropriate traffic management and mitigation measures are in place. The Noise Action Plan also recognises the need to safeguard places of refuge from environmentalnoise and has identified Quiet Areas which are tranquil public places valued by the local community. The Quiet Areas and NAPPAs within the County are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map.

81 Enviromental Noise Directive (END) 2002/49/EC

82 Noise ans Soundscape Action Plan 2018-2023.

2.14.10

Where proposed development is to be located in close proximity to a source of noise pollution, or includes possible noise conflicts within the proposed site, proposals will be required to incorporate design, landscaping and other measures to minimise the effects on future occupants.  The layout of buildings can frequently be designed or modified to reduce the effects of noise disturbance and create appropriate soundscapes.  Similarly schemes can be designed to incorporate materials, features and landscaping which reduce the impact of noise on the surrounding buildings.  In accordance with the agent of change principle the business or person responsible for introducing a change is responsible for managing that change.  Consideration of proposals should therefore take into account the nature of the soundscape which exists in an area and the characteristics of the place, or specific activities which have shaped it.  Where there are potential noise implications, developers may be required to provide an assessment of noise impact, together with proposals for mitigation in support of planning applications. If the results of the assessment and proposed mitigation measures are not satisfactory there could be grounds to refuse planning permission.  Not withstanding the use of good design and materials, there will be some instances where new residential and other noise sensitive uses, such as hospitals and schools, will not be acceptable in close proximity to existing noise generating uses or activities.

Policy RP 3: AIR AND LIGHT POLLUTION –

Where development could lead to exposure to a source of air or light pollution it must be demonstrated that appropriate mitigation measures will be implemented, and incorporated into the design of the development to minimise the effects on existing and future occupants.

Air Pollution

2.14.11

The Swansea Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) 2010 (Nitrogen dioxide (NO2)) is currently the only AQMA within the County boundary and evidence suggests that the annual mean objective for NO2 will continue to be exceeded within the AQMA. The AQMA boundary is shown on the Constraints and Issues Map. Monitoring also indicates areas of exceedances, outside the AQMA and these are identified in the Council’s latest Air Quality Progress Report. Developers are advised to engage in early consultation with the Council’s Pollution Control team to confirm where an AQA is required to support an application. This will be considered on a case by case basis having regard to the scale and type of the development. For example, residential development is likely to trigger the need for an AQA, as the issue of primary interest in relation to air quality in the AQMA’s relates to residential exposure along the roadside. Mitigation may therefore be required to be demonstrated through an AQA to ensure that the design avoids kerbside development. The scale of development which will trigger the need for an AQA will also be considered on a case by case basis having regard to the location of the development and how it interacts with its neighbouring environments. Where the need for mitigation is identified, the AQA is to demonstrate that appropriate mitigation measures will be implemented to ensure that the development does not cause significant risk to air quality by virtue to emissions from the development itself of the additional new traffic movements it would generate. The AQA will provide further information on the extent to which the development proposed would increase the number of exposed individuals in an area likely to fail UK air quality objectives (proposed or in regulations), either within an AQMA or an area that might become an AQMA if the application were to be granted. 

Light Pollution

2.14.12

Light pollution can have a harmful effect on the amenity of neighbouring land uses, traffic safety and the natural environment. However, lighting can also help prevent crime and the fear of crime and facilitate greater use of sport and recreational areas. A balance therefore needs to be struck, and, where necessary, conditions will be attached to planning permissions to ensure that the design and operation of lighting systems are satisfactory and/or to prevent light pollution. This may include measures to prevent glare, ensure amenity of neighbouring land uses, protection of the natural and historic environment and the reduction of carbon emissions associated with lighting. Development within the AONB will be considered against the Gower AONB Lighting SPG and other relevant guidance for development within Gower.

Policy RP 4: WATER POLLUTION AND THE PROTECTION OF WATER RESOURCES –

Development that compromises the quality of the water environment, or does not comply with good water resource management, will not be permitted.

Development proposals must make efficient use of water resources and, where appropriate, contribute towards improvements to water quality.

Sustainable drainage systems (SuDS) must be implemented wherever they would be effective and practicable.

Watercourses will be safeguarded through green corridors/riparian buffers: to protect water habitats and species; water quality and to provide for flood plain capacity.

Development proposals that would have a significant adverse impact on biodiversity, fisheries, public access or water related recreation use of water resources, will not be permitted. 

 

2.14.13

The purpose of this Policy is to protect and restore clean water to ensure its long term sustainable use. Issues such as water pollution, flood risk and the protection and enhancement of aquatic ecosystems are major considerations for development. Full regard must be had to the Water Framework Directive (WFD)83 which sets out the requirements in relation to the water environment and requires good water quality status for all water bodies and the Urban Waste Water Treatment Regulation84 that protects the environment from the adverse effects of urban waste discharges. 

83 Water Framework Directive WFD 133 EC Directive

84 1991/271/EEC on Urban Waste Water Treatment (as amended by EC Directive 1998/15/EEC)

2.14.14

Water pollution and the consequent poor water quality can be from a range of sources. The WFD has provided the opportunity to work with partner organisations, particularly NRW, to recognise the need to improve the whole water environment and promote the sustainable use of water for the benefit of both people and wildlife. The Western Wales River Basin Management Plan (RBMP)85, as required by the WFD, sets out environmental objectives, standards and a programme of measures by which they can be achieved in the area. Where development proposals relate to a main river or ordinary watercourse, opportunities should be taken to incorporate in the development a riparian buffer of up to 7 metres adjoining both banks. This will allow for necessary maintenance by NRW and will protect and encourage local  biodiversity. Development proposals that, in the opinion of the Council, following consultation with NRW, do not comply with the objectives and standards of the RBMP will be considered to have a compromising effect on waterresources and will be refused.

85 Natural Resources Wales / River Basin Management Plans Published 2015 - 2021

2.14.15

A groundwater source protection zone exists on Gower (Gower SPZ1) and is identified on the Constraints and Issues Map. This aquifer supplies water for domestic or food production purposes and must be safeguarded from development activities that could result in its contamination, such as leaching or the discharge of water into the ground. All development proposals within the Gower SPZ1 must be able to demonstrate, to the satisfaction of NRW, that the proposal complies with sustainable water resource management and that no contamination of the water supply will result from the development.

2.14.16

Water abstraction can have a detrimental impact on water quality and development will need to be limited to areas where adequate water resources exist or can be reasonably provided without adversely affecting existing water quality. Existing ground water and river levels must be maintained.

2.14.17

Water quality can be improved through effective waste water infrastructure provision. Dwr Cymru Welsh Water (DCWW) is the sewerage undertaker for the County and has a general duty to provide the sewerage system. On this basis DCWW is currently committed to undertake improvements in Waste Water Treatment Works’ (WWTW) capacities, treatment levels and discharge quality through actions programmed within the Western Wales RBMP and through funding allocations and priorities secured through their Asset Management Programme (AMP) process.  

2.14.18

Surface water does not need to be treated and no surface water drainage should connect to a foul drain. Part H of Building Regulations 2010 provides for a hierarchical approach to surface water drainage in the order of soakaway/SuDS, then watercourse, and then if neither are reasonably practical the use of a sewer. Development will only be allowed where provision is made for the necessary waste water infrastructure to protect water quality, in accordance with Policy EU 4 Public Utilities and New Development. 

2.14.19

For Gowerton WwTW catchment, the connection of foul flows generated by new development currently introduces the risk of deterioration in water quality of the Burry Inlet and Loughor Estuary. Any increase in the flows to combined sewers may increase the load to the WwTW, as well as the frequency of discharges from storm sewerage overflows during significant rainfall. Consequently, new development will only be allowed to connect foul flows to the sewerage system for disposal once any risk has been reduced through mitigation measures. Mitigation in respect of connection of new foul drainage will normally be in the form of surface water removal away from the combined sewer. For some development in the Llannant WwTW catchment similar mitigation measures may be required, and will be considered on a case by case basis in consultation DCWW. 

2.14.20

Minor and change of use applications will not normally be required to provide compensatory surface water removal. Where mitigation measures are required, the level of compensatory surface water removal will depend on the size and location of the development will be negotiated as part of the planning application process, in consultation with DCWW. The agreed measures must be in place and the compensatory surface water removed from the system prior to development connecting to the sewerage system. 

2.14.21

The identification of potential surface water removal or reduction schemes should follow a hierarchical approach in respect of their location, outlined as follows:

2.14.22

DCWW has identified potential compensatory surface water removal schemes to assist in the process of identifying appropriate schemes.

2.14.23

Only in exceptional cases, and subject to agreement between the Council, DCWW and NRW, may it be possible to consider a compensatory scheme from a neighbouring WwTW  catchment to that of the development location. For this to be acceptable, it must be demonstrated that the preferred locations for schemes using the hierarchical approach have been fully explored without success and it must be clearly demonstrated that the alternative approach provides the same protection against water quality deterioration resulting from the new development. 

2.14.24

In the extremely rare situation when no compensatory surface water removal schemes can be implemented. Developments may be able to utilise surplus capacity identified on the Council’s register of surface water removal schemes. 

2.14.25

The Council, NRW, DCWW and Carmarthenshire County Council all have a role to play in protecting the water quality of the Burry Inlet and Loughor Estuary. These agencies will continue to work collaboratively to achieve this objective. This will include producing and updating over the Planperiod a joint agreement or ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ that will set out the roles and responsibilities of each organisation in the provision of foul water infrastructure to safeguard against any unacceptable detrimental impacts on the Estuary arising from additional foul flows from new development. Full consideration will be given by all relevant parties as to whether or not the mechanisms that apply to proposals in the Gowerton WwTW should also apply to those within the Llannant WwTW catchment.

2.14.26

In addition to improving waste water infrastructure provision, water quality can be improved through a number of measures including: effective design; the use of wetlands/greenspace for flood alleviation; the use of SuDS; sustainable water use in design; the planting of native species; the removal of invasive non-native species; and good agricultural practice. Some of these measures can be taken forward through the planning system and are covered in other policies of the Plan that work in combination with the protection of waterresources policy to contribute to managing the water quality issues. 

2.14.27

A Nutrient Management Plan for the Burry Inlet may be required. Such a management plan will aim to enable the desired growth whilst maintaining a favourable status for the Burry Inlet. It will outline the actions necessary outside the planning regime to allow development in the catchment.

2.14.28

The Council is committed to implementing sustainable approaches to surface water drainage and expects development to incorporate SuDS wherever possible86. SuDS mimic natural drainage to improve rainwater infiltration to soil and ground and can be implemented at all scales of development. They may include: green roofs; rainwater harvesting systems; soakaways/infiltration systems; permeable surfaces; rain gardens; detention basins and swales. SuDS can improve a development by creating habitats that enhance biodiversity as well as providing potential amenity and recreational benefits.  

86 Schedule 3 of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010

2.14.29

Where SuDS cannot be implemented developers are required to demonstrate that they have examined SuDS options and provide specific details to explain why SuDS would not be effective as part of their particular development proposals. Where SuDS can be implemented their design should accord with Welsh Government’s Recommended Non-Statutory Standards for Sustainable Drainage SuDS in Wales – Designing, Constructing and Maintaining Water Drainage Systems (2016) and be fully endorsed by the Council, as the SuDS Approval Body (SAB). 

2.14.30

Planning conditions and obligations will be used to ensure SuDS implementation, including phasing requirement, long term maintenance and the provision of off-site drainage. Integrating watercourses and ponds provides an opportunity for SuDS to be incorporated into larger scale schemes as landscape features. The use of above ground SuDS features will be expected in such developments for both conveyance and attenuation in preference to any other proprietary system, which should be designed into the development landscape.

2.14.31

The provision of Green Infrastructure, including woodland planting, should be considered as a measure to reduce surface water run-off. Any opportunities to reinstate, or create additional, natural functional floodplain through the development process will also be encouraged.

2.14.32

In order to provide effective drainage in the long term, developers will need to make arrangements for the future maintenance of SuDS and water courses associated with the development. This will be secured through section 106 agreements. The Council will explore the potential for future strategic flood defence projects to be funded through CIL. Proposals should seek wherever possible to incorporate water conservation techniques including rain harvesting and grey water recycling.

2.14.33

Water quality can be affected by development on contaminated land. In order to prevent this, contaminated sites should be adequately sealed against the leakage of polluted matter and surface drainage should be directed away from the source of contamination and any contaminated water (ground or surface) must be adequately treated prior to discharge. Planning permission will not be granted where in the opinion of the Council, following consultation with NRW, the disturbance of contaminated land will significantly adversely affect the quality of surface and groundwaters.

Policy RP 5:AVOIDANCE OF FLOOD RISK –

In order to avoid the risk of flooding, development will not be permitted :

i. In areas at risk of fluvial, pluvial, coastal and reservoir flooding, unless it can be demonstrated that the development can be justified in line with national guidance and is supported by a technical assessment that verifies that the new development is designed to alleviate the threat and consequences of flooding;

ii. In areas at risk of flooding from local sources, unless the Council is satisfied with the proposed drainage strategy;

iii. Where it would lead to an increase in the risk of flooding on the site or elsewhere from fluvial, pluvial, coastal or increased water runoff from the site;

iv. Where it would have a detrimental effect on the integrity of existing fluvial, pluvial or coastal flood defences; or

v. Where it would impede access to existing and futur e tidal and fluvial defences for maintenance and emergency purposes.

vi. Where the proposal does not incorporate environmentally sympathetic flood risk mitigation measures, such as SuDS, unless it can be demonstrated that such measures are not feasible. 

2.14.34

A sustainable approach to flooding is adopted by avoiding flood hazard areas. New development will be expected to be located away from unnecessary flood risk and to meet the requirements of:

2.14.35

Fluvial and coastal flood risk areas are identified in the TAN 15 Development and Flood Risk (2004) and Development Advice Maps (DAM). These maps are regularly updated and are based on the latest and best available information considered sufficient to determine when fluvial or coastal flood risk issues need to be taken into account in planning future development. DAM zones C1 and C2 show high flood risk areas and are based on NRW extreme outlines for coastal and fluvial flooding. These areas are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map. Development will only be considered in areas at a high risk of flooding where it can be demonstrated that the site can comply with the justification and assessment requirements set out in TAN 15 Development and Flood Risk (2004). Only less vulnerable development will be permitted within DAM zone C2 

2.14.36

Flood risk from local sources arises from ordinary  watercourses, surface water run-off (also known as pluvial flooding), groundwater and the interface between main rivers and surface water. Areas at risk of flooding from surface water runoff are identified in the latest NRW surface water flood maps. These areas are shown on the Constraints and Issues Map and are based on the most up to date NRW surface water flood maps. Other local sources of flood risk are identified in the Council’s latest Flood Risk Management Plan (2015)87.  The Council is the Lead Local Flood Authority (LLFA) responsible for leading the management of flood risk from local sources. LLFA roles and responsibilities include assessing and approving drainage strategies for all new development.

87  Swansea Flood Risk Management Plan 2015

2.14.37

Watercourses and flood defences (including coastal flood defences) require maintenance and it is essential that access into these areas and structures is maintained at all times, as referred to in the reasoned justification for Policy 3 (Water Pollution and the Protection of Water Resources).

2.14.38

It is considered beneficial for watercourses to remain in an open state for both flood defence and environmental purposes and the Council is therefore generally opposed to the culverting of watercourses. Under the terms of the Land Drainage Act 1991 Ordinary Watercourse, consents for works within the County to ordinary watercourses (streams ditches both natural and manmade and culverts etc.) will be issued by the Council’s Drainage and Coastal Management Section.  

2.14.39

Information relating to the implementation of flood risk mitigation measures is contained in Appendix 3.

Policy RP 6:LAND CONTAMINATION –

Development proposals on land where there is a risk from actual or potential contamination or landfill gas will not be permitted unless it can be demonstrated that measures can be taken to satisfactorily overcome any significant risk to life, human health, property, controlled waters, or the natural and historic environment.

2.14.40

This Policy seeks to ensure that any risks to development arising from contamination or landfill gas generation are identified and accurately assessed and that where appropriate satisfactory measures are taken to overcome the risks identified.

2.14.41

Failure to identify and accurately assess any risk to development arising from contamination or landfill gas generation may pose a threat to the health and safety of future occupiers or neighbouring occupiers, as well as the natural and historic environments and controlled waters. Consultations will be undertaken with NRW and/or with the Council’s Environmental Health Section to ensure that any development proposed does not pose a risk to controlled waters. NRW will also be consulted in respect of development proposals located within 250 metres of landfill sites.

2.14.42

The Council’s Environmental Health Section holds information on the known location of contaminated land and landfill sites and sites where the land use history suggests a risk of contamination or the land is designated as contaminated under Part IIA of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. However this information is not exhaustive and the responsibility for determining the extent and effects of such constraints upon a site remain with the developer. Allocations of land for development do not signify that those areas are free from contamination. 

2.14.43

Planning applications on sites that the Council has reason to believe are contaminated must be accompanied by a site investigation report containing a risk assessment and proposed remedial measures. Consideration of the acceptability of remedial measures will include the impact they have on controlled waters and the natural and historic environment. The Council, in consultation with NRW, will need to be satisfied that actual or potential contamination can be overcome before planning permission may be granted. 

Policy RP 7:LAND INSTABILITY –

Development which would create, affect or might be affected by unstable or potentially unstable land will not be permitted where there would be a significant direct risk to life, human health, property, buildings and structures, or the natural heritage on the site or in its vicinity.

Development will only be permitted on unstable or potentially unstable land where:

• It can be satisfactorily demonstrated that proposals to make the land capable of supporting the development are adequate; and

• The necessary mitigation measures will be in place before development commences or are an integral part of the construction works.

Within the defined Slip Area of Graig Trewyddfa, development will not be permitted. 

Clcik to view Site

2.14.44

This Policy aims to steer development away from areas of unstable land. There is an extensive legacy of underground workings and surface spoil heaps in parts of the County due to the area’s long history of mining and quarrying. The possible effects on land stability of past workings, as well as of natural processes in the limestone areas, must therefore be taken into account in the consideration of planning applications, in order to ensure that development is not exposed to, or does not create, significant risks from land instability. 

2.14.45

Information on ground stability can be obtained from the Council’s Environmental Health Section, the Mineral Valuer and the Coal Authority. The information held by the Council’s Environmental Health Section is not exhaustive and the responsibility for determining the extent and effects of such constraints upon a site remain with the developer. Developers may be required to provide engineering assessments in support of planning applications where there is concern that proposed development may create, affect or be affected by unstable land. It will need to be demonstrated that a site is stable or that any actual or potential instability can reasonably be overcome before planning permission may be granted. 

2.14.46

Although there is evidence of mining activity and geological problems within the County, there is only one defined Slip Area which located at Graig Trewyddfa and is shown on the Constraints and Issues Map.

Policy RP 8: SUSTAINABLE WASTE MANAGEMENT PROPOSALS –

In order to manage waste within the County in a sustainable manner, the d evelopment of in-building sustainable waste management facilities involving the transfer, treatment, re-use, recycling, in-vessel composting or energy recovery from waste, will be permitted within Preferred Areas or areas having the benefit of lawful B2 use, provided that there are no significant adverse effects in relation to: 

i. Adjoining land uses; 

ii. Amenity of neighbouring land uses or individual properties, including the effects of traffic movement and the generation of noise, dust, fumes, vibration and odour;

iii. The highway network;

iv.  Visual impact;

v.  Natural heritage, cultural and historic environment;

vi. The type, quality and source of waste;

v ii. Controlled waters, including water quantity and quality;

viii. Air Quality; and

ix. Public health and well-being.

Development of sustainable waste management facilities in appropriate rural locations, including composting and anaerobic digestion, will be supported subject to the above criteria.

Proposals should conform to the principles of the waste hierarchy and have regard to the nearest appropriate installation concept and self-sufficiency principles where necessary.

Preferred areas for the development of in-building waste management facilities are identified on the Proposals Map.  The co-location of waste management facilities to enable the development of heat networks will be supported, subject to the above criteria. 

Proposals must be supported by an appropriate Waste Management Assessment.

Click to view on map

 

2.14.47

When assessing proposals for all types of waste management facilities the extent to which the development contributes to the objectives and principles set out in the National Waste Strategy and the relevant Sector Plans, in environmental, economic, and social terms, will be a material planning consideration. Planning issues which must be taken into account when preparing applications are set out within Annex C of TAN 21 Waste (2014)88. Developers should clearly justify why a proposal is necessary and that it meets a regional or locally identified need. A Waste Planning Assessment (WPA) will be required to support all applications for a waste facility classified as a disposal, recovery or recycling facility. The WPA should contain sufficient information to enable an assessment of the application and its contribution to meeting the requirements set out in the Welsh Governement Collections, Infrastructure and Markets Sector Plan89. Advice regarding the information to be included within a WPA can be found in Annex B of TAN 21 Waste (2014).

88 TAN 21: Waste (Apprendix A)

89 Collections, Infrastructure and Markets Sector Plan

2.14.48

The waste hierarchy is used to advise on waste management options, and development proposals must demonstrate that the treatment process reflects the priority order of the waste hierarchy as far as possible and how the management of waste is being driven up the hierarchy. Departure from the hierarchy should be justified through the use of a Life Cycle Assessment and be contained within the WPA. In accordance with national policy, particular regard will be given to how proposals for waste covered by Article 16 of the revised Waste Framework Directive fit with the Nearest Appropriate Installation concept and Self-Sufficiency Principles

2.14.49

Where proposals for in-building waste management facilities satisfy the Policy criteria they are more likely to be located in existing or proposed General Industrial (B2) areas (as classified under the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order), unless an assessment of the proposal identifies that more onerous location standards should apply. The South West Wales Regional Waste Plan (1st Review) Areas of Search Maps identify potential areas of in-building and open-air facilities. Developers are encouraged to utilise these maps in the first instance to identify suitable areas in which to locate waste management developments. Facilities should not be located in, or near to, locations where they would have a significant adverse impact on areas or sites designated for local, national or international protection.  

2.14.50

Preferred areas for new waste management facilities are existing waste facilities (for example, the baling plant site at Swansea Enterprise Park) and the former Tip site at Felindre, which is identified on the Proposals Map. Any proposals at these ‘Preferred Locations’ will still be subject to the normal planning process and their identification within the Plan does not infer that planning permission will automatically be granted or that other sites will be excluded from consideration. Sites where there are existing waste operations or where there are existing B2 uses may also be considered suitable for new waste management facilities.

2.14.51

The site at Felindre is identified for a waste management facility. The site has potential to accommodate a Combined Heat and Power (CHP) Facility which could provide heat or power for adjacent proposed developments in accordance with Policy EU 3 District Heating and Cooling. Development of this type of facility will be supported subject to environmental and amenity considerations. The potential for incorporating CHP facilities or co-locating energy from waste schemes should always be considered in any proposal for a new waste management facility. Proposals for Energy from Waste (EfW) facilities should be able to either link into the National Grid or provide heat and power for local communities or large industrial users close to the facility.

2.14.52

All proposals will need to demonstrate that they would not cause any significant adverse impacts to the environment (including cultural and historic) and the amenity of neighbouring land uses, particularly local residents. Particular regard will be given to the compatibility of the proposal with neighbouring land uses, potential impact on natural heritage, pollution or disturbance to ground or surface water and air, access and traffic generated to and from the site, and the potential for noise, dust, vibration, fumes and odour arising from the operation.

2.14.53

An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) must be submitted for all applications falling within Schedule 1 of the EIA Regulations and, where appropriate, will be requested for any development falling within Schedule 2. NRW will be consulted on all applications for waste management facilities. A Health Impact Assessment (HIA) will be required, where appropriate. This is likely to form part of any Environmental Statement submitted with a proposal.

2.14.54

Proposals for open windrow composting facilities are better located on farms rather than industrial sites and will also be assessed against Policy CV 5 relating to Farm Diversification. AD or IVC facilities on farms can only be considered farm diversification if the majority of the feedstock is derived from the agricultural operation of the farm unit on which the AD or in IVC composting plant is located. Proposals involving the production of recycled or secondary aggregates will be assessed against Policy RP 12 Sustainable Development of Mineral Resources.

Policy RP 9: LANDFILL SITES –

The development of new, or the extension of existing, landfill sites will only be permitted in exceptional circumstances, where it can be clearly demonstrated that: 
 
i.Additional capacity is required; 
 
ii.The proposal conforms with the waste hierarchy, the concept of the nearest appropriate installation and self-sufficiency;
 
iii.The site is not within an area of floodrisk as defined by TAN 15 Development and Flood Risk (2014); and
 
iv.There would be no significant adverse impact on: 
 
a.The natural heritage, cultural and historic environment; 
 
b.The geology and hydrogeology of the site; 
 
c.Controlled waters, including water quality and quantity; 
 
d.The amenities of neighbouring occupiers, including the effects of traffic movement and the generation of noise, dust and fumes; 
 
e.The highway network; 
 
f.Public safety, health and well-being; 
 
g.The visual amenity of the site; 
 
h.The proposal will not result in the permanent loss of Grades 1, 2 or 3a agricultural land; and
 
i.Public utilities infrastructure and services.
 
The method of restoration on completion of the landfill process and the proposed after use will need to form part of the landfill proposal and be completed within the lifetime of any permission granted.
 
 

 

2.14.55

Tir John, the last remaining landfill site for the disposal of residual municipal waste within the County, will accept waste until 2022 with a subsequent period of restoration. In the meantime a Regional Residual Waste Contract is being pursued in order to ensure that a facility is in place to accept the County’s residual waste after 2022.

2.14.56

Any application must be supported by evidence justifying why the proposal departs from the waste hierarchy. Without exceptional justification planning applications for the disposal of inert waste will be refused. Proposals for new landfill sites will be evaluated in the context of other waste management options; the updated position contained in the annual waste monitoring reports; criteria set out in Policy RP 8 relating to Sustainable Waste Management and with regard to detailed planning considerations set out within TAN 21Waste (2014) Annex C. Proposals will be carefully assessed to ensure landfill sites do not pose a serious risk to the environment, neighbouring uses or the public.  

2.14.57

Where appropriate and feasible, developers may be required to enter into a S106 Agreement to ensure that proposals include measures to generate energy from landfill gas where methane might otherwise escape into the atmosphere. Ensuring that the restoration and aftercare of a completed landfill site (or cell) takes place to a standard agreed by the Council will also be secured via a S106 Agreement. The final landscaping must be completed by the end date of the planning permission.

2.14.58

An EIA must be submitted for all applications falling within Schedule 1 of the EIA Regulations and, where appropriate, will be requested for any development falling within Schedule 2.

Policy RP 10 SUSTAINABLE WASTE MANAGEMENT FOR NEW DEVELOPMENT –

Development will be required to incorporate, as appropriate, adequate and effective provision for the storage, recycling and other sustainable management of waste, and allow for appropriate access arrangements for recycling and refuse collection vehicles and personnel.

2.14.59

The following information will need to be provided in support of developments, as appropriate, to demonstrate how sustainable waste management Swansea Local Development Plan will be provided for:

2.14.60

The views of the Council’s Waste Management Section will be taken into account on all types of development to ascertain the extent and nature of facilities needed to deal with any potential municipal waste arising associated with the proposed development. Further guidance to developers and householders on planning for the storage and facilitating the collection of waste and recyclates in new developments is contained within SPG.

2.14.61

Applications will also be considered against Policy T 5 relating to Design Principles for Transport Measures and Infrastructure.

Policy RP 11 AGRICULTURAL LAND – DISPOSAL OF INERT WASTE –

The deposit of imported inert waste materials for the improvement of low-grade agricultural land will only be permitted where it can be demonstrated that:

i. There are no practicable re-use or recycling opportunities for such material;

ii. The improvement sought is reasonably necessary for the purpose of agriculture within the holding and the waste material is suitable for the purpose, and the volume of waste to be deposited is the minimum necessary to achieve the improvement sought;

iii. The final landform is appropriately landscaped and compatible with the existing surrounding ground levels;

iv. There are no significant adverse impacts on natural heritage; and

v. The existing site is not at risk of flooding.

All planning applications for the deposit of imported inert materials on agricultural land must be accompanied by an agricultural land classification survey. 

2.14.62

Inert materials can include soils, bricks and concrete. In some cases the use of inert materials for land reclamation and/or to establish a base for built development are not the most appropriate and sustainable uses of the materials. The Policy seeks to ensure that there are no significant adverse environmental or amenity impacts arising as a result of the disposal of inert materials and the appropriate reuse of such material is fully considered.  

2.14.63

Proposals, which are based on the improvement of land quality, land drainage or other related matters on agricultural land comprised within an agricultural unit, will be considered as agricultural development. Any planning application for waste disposal on agricultural land must be accompanid by a land classification survey in order to demonstrate that the land is not classed as the Best and Most Versatile (i.e. grades 1-3a) and the Council will have regard to the advice of NRW, as a statutory consultee.

Policy RP 12: RESOURCES –

The efficient and appropriate use of minerals within the County will be encouraged, including the re-use and recycling of suitable minerals as an alternative to primary won aggregates.  The extraction of mineral resources will be permitted where they satisfy the following criteria: 
 
i.It can be demonstrated that there is a requirement for the mineral to meet the need of society either nationally, regionally or locally, and the need cannot be met from secondary or recycled materials or existing reserves;
 
ii.The proposed end use of the mineral resource is appropriate and represents an efficient use of the resource; 
 
iii.The development would not cause demonstrable harm to the amenities of local communities, in particular with regard to access, traffic generation, noise, vibration, dust, air quality and odour; 
 
iv.The proposal would not result in any significant adverse impacts on public health and well-being;
 
v.There would be no significant adverse impa ct, including visual impact, on the landscape, natural heritage, cultural and historic environments;
 
vi.There would be no significant adverse impact on the quality and quantity of controlled waters;
 
vii.It can be demonstrated that no signifi cant danger, damage or disruption would arise from subsidence or ground instability;  
 
viii.The minerals will be transported by rail or waterways wherever feasible; and 
 
ix.Appropriate and progressive restoration and aftercare measures have been submitted, including post closure management of the site and the provision of other appropriate compensatory enhancements.
 
Within the Gower AONB mineral development will not be permitted.
 
The Council will not support the development of land based coal or unconventional oil or gas operations, including the exploration, appraisal and extraction of oil and gas by unconventional methods (including the making of exploratory boreholes), unless the applicant can demonstrate the proposal conforms with national planning policy. 
 
Wharves in Swansea Docks used for the unloading of marine dredged sand and gravel will be safeguarded.
 
 
2.14.64

The policy sets out criteria against which all proposals for mineral development will be assessed, including borrow pits, the reworking of mineral tips for their mineral content and the development of land based unconventional oiland gas (i.e. coal-bed methane, shale gas and underground coal gasification).  There is a clear Welsh Government policy objective to avoid the continued extraction and consumption of fossil fuels.  Therefore, proposals for opencast coal operations, deep-mine development or colliery spoil disposal will not be permitted.  Should wholly exceptional circumstances occur, proposals must clearly demonstrate why the development is needed in the context of climate change emissions reductions targets and for reasons of national energy targets.

2.14.65

Similarly, proposals for unconventional oil or gas operations will only be permitted where an applicant can provide robust and credible evidence demonstrating that proposals conform to the energy hierarchy, including how the development would make a necessary contribution towards decarbonising the energy system, and that the proposal meets all the above policy criteria.

2.14.66

Following the Town and Country Planning (Notification) (Coal and Petroleum) (Wales) Direction 2018 the Council is required to refer any application it is minded to approve for the development of petroleum or the development of coal, as set out in the legislation, to the Welsh Government.  Notwithstanding the Direction, the Council passed a Notice of Motion on the 28th  January 2016 to adopt a policy of a presumption of not supporting proposals for exploration and development of land based unconventional oil and gas within the County, including applications for exploratory boreholes. 

2.14.67

Minerals Technical Advice Notes (MTANS) 1 Aggregates (2004) and 2 Coal (2009) provide clear guidance on reducing the impacts of mineral extraction, including dust, blasting, noise, visual intrusion and traffic generation as well as the restoration and aftercare of sites.  When considering proposals for aggregate extraction reference should be made to the South Wales Regional Technical Statement (RTS) 1st Review (2014). 

2.14.68

In accordance with the recommendations contained within the RTS 1st Review, no future provision for land-won primary aggregates, including allocations for future workings have been identified within the Plan.  No new mineral development will be permitted within the Gower AONB as it is not considered that the exceptional circumstances test outlined within National Planning Policy and Guidance will apply with the Plan period.  Proposed mineral development adjacent to, or close to, the AONB will be carefully assessed to ensure the environmental and amenity impact is acceptable and there are no significant detrimental effects on the special qualities of the AONB.  National Planning Policy and Guidance sets out the criteria by which to assess proposals that are likely to have a significant effect on the integrity of an internationally designated site (SPA, SAC or Ramsar Site).  

2.14.69

The requirement for mineral resources will be viewed as being limited to that which is necessary to meet the needs of the present generation for economic growth and maintenance of standards of living.  Where the end use of mineral resource is not consistent with the quality and significance of he resource it will be viewed as being misused and therefore wasteful.

2.14.70

In accordance with National Planning Policy and Guidance, agricultural land of grades 1, 2 and 3a should only be used for mineral development if there is an overriding national (UK) need for the development, and sufficient land in lower grades is either unavailable or available lower grade land has statutory environmental designations, unless clear evidence is submitted demonstrating that the land can be restored to a standard equivalent to its original agricultural land classification.  Any adverse effects on agriculture as a result of mineral development must be minimised as far as possible.  

2.14.71

Proposals to develop secondary aggregate resources or recycling centres for construction, excavation and demolition waste will most usually be appropriate within construction sites, followed by B2 employment land allocations, if compatible with surrounding land uses in accordance with Policy RP 8 relating to Sustainable Waste Management. 

2.14.72

Borrow pits are temporary mineral working operations to supply particular construction projects.  Borrow pits ought to be located within or close to a construction site, and wherever possible the mineral should be supplied direct without using public roads.  

2.14.73

Mineral development will not normally be acceptable within 200m of settlements identified on the Proposals Map (in the case of hard rock where blasting is necessary), 100m (in the case of sand and gravel and hard rock sites where blasting is not necessary) and 500m (in the case of coal).

2.14.74

Mineral developers should endeavour to minimise environmental disturbance.  Compensatory measures will be sought with respect to loss of biodiversity as a result of any proposed mineral development.  Where, under wholly exceptional circumstances, planning permission is granted for coal mining, under the terms of the West Glamorgan County Council Act 1987, a condition will be attached requiring the deposit of a financial bond or other means of financial security capable of securing satisfactory landscaping, restoration and aftercare requirements.  In all other cases where planning permission is granted, secure satisfactory restoration, aftercare and beneficial re-use will be sought through Section 106 Agreements as appropriate.  

2.14.75

A HIA will also be required as appropriate in support of applications for mineral development, in accordance with National Planning Policy and Guidance.

2.14.76

Development which would result in the loss of a wharf used for the landing of marine dredged sand and gravel must ensure an alternative wharf location is provided (i.e. the use is relocated within the operational docks) for the landing of sand and gravel prior to development commencing.

Policy RP 13 SAFEGUARDING MINERALS –

Development within mineral safeguarding areas that would permanently sterilise identified resources of aggregates and coal will only be permitted where it can be demonstrated that:

i. The extraction of the mineral is impracticable, uneconomic or environmentally unacceptable ;

ii. The mineral has already been extracted or can be extracted satisfactorily prior to the development taking place;

iii. The scale and location of the development would have no significant impact on the potential working of the resource; or

iv.  There is an overriding need for the development.

Developments of a temporary nature will only be permitted where it can be demonstrated that the proposal will be implemented and the site restored within a timescale that the mineral is likely to be needed. 

Click to view Limestone area on map

Click to view Sand & Gravel area on map

Clcik to view Sandstone area on map

 

2.14.77

Mineral deposits are finite and National Planning Policy and Guidance requires that resources are safeguarded from sterilisation in case society requires access to them in the future.  This does not indicate a presumption in favour of working; just that the location is known and identified on the Proposals Map.  Although there has been very limited development of mineral resources in the recent past, the County contains significant mineral resources, many of which have historically been exploited.  

2.14.78

In most instances, development may proceed within safeguarded areas provided developers can demonstrate, in support of a planning application, that; the resource is of poor quality or quantity; that it can be extracted satisfactorily prior to any development taking place; that there is an overriding need for the development; or that the scale and location of the development would not have any significant impact on the possible working of the resource.  Small-scale development proposals, for example limited infill, householder development or agricultural development, will often be permissible within safeguarded areas, although they will first need to demonstrate that they would not prejudice future exploitation of the safeguarded resource.  However it is unlikely that mineral extraction itself will be appropriate within or adjacent to settlement limits, due to environmental and amenity considerations.  Further details on the implementation of the policy will be addressed through forthcoming SPG.

Policy RP 14: MINERAL BUFFER ZONES –

Within the identified mineral buffer zone: 
 
i.Mineral extraction will not be permitted;  
 
ii.New sensitive non-mineral development will not be permitted, unless it can be demonstrated that there will be no adverse impacts or conflicts between the new development and the mineral operation;
 
iii.Any other development proposals, including ancillary m ineral operations will be carefully assessed to ensure that they would not result in any significant adverse effects.
 
Click to view area on map
2.14.79
The purpose of the buffer zone it two-fold:
 
  1. to protect sensitive development from the impacts of mineral operations by ensuring mineral operations do not encroach too close to sensitive development; and
  2. to protect mineral operations from new sensitive development locating too close and potentially impacting on the operator’s capacity to carry out permitted mineral operations without causing nuisance.  Due to the close proximity of a number of sensitive developments to the existing minerals operation, any proposed development must ensure that there is no conflict between the new proposed uses and the mineral operation and must accord with Policies RP 2 and RP 3 and carry out effective/appropriate mitigation to prevent exposure to existing sources of environmental impact where necessary. 
2.14.80

The extent of buffer zones are set out in MTAN 1 Aggregates (2004) (a minimum of 200 metres around hard rock quarries and a minimum of 100 metres around sand and gravel extraction) and MTAN 2 Coal (2009) (500 metres around coal working sites).  Due to the location of the buffer zone identified on the Proposals Map, any planning application will also be considered against policies that relate to the Gower AONB and Preservation and Enhancement of Buildings and Features of Historic Importance, in particular where the application site falls within a designated conservation area.

2.15

GLOSSARY

Acceptable Costs Guidance (ACG) Are provided by Welsh Government to enable the assessment of the likely acceptability of affordable housing schemes for Social Housing Grant purposes
Active Travel  Active Travel means using walking or cycling as an alternative to motorised transport (cars, buses, etc.) for the purpose of making every-day journeys. The term "walking" includes all non-motorised users, i.e. wheelchairs, electric wheelchairs, mobility scooters and other mobility aids.
Affordable Housing

Housing where there are secure mechanisms in place to ensure that it is accessible to those who cannot afford market housing, both on first occupation and for subsequent occupiers. Affordable housing may be broken down into two categories:

Social Rented Housing – consists of the stock provided by Councils and registered social landlords where rent levels have regard to the Welsh Government’s guideline rents and benchmark rents, 

Intermediate Housing – covers housing provision where prices or rents are above those of social rentedhousing but below market housing prices or rents. This can include shared equity schemes (for example Homebuy). Intermediate housing differs from low cost market housing, which the Welsh Government does not consider to be affordable for the purpose of the land use planning system.

Affordable Housing Exception Sites Housing permitted outside defined settlement limits for the specific purpose of providing affordable housing for people who need to live in the locality but who cannot reasonably be accommodated through the area’s general housing market. 
Air Quality Management Areas (AQMA) Locations where the Council believes that national air quality objectives are not likely to be met and where improvements are needed. The Council is under a legal obligation to declare by Order such sites as Air QualityManagement Areas.
Alternative Sites Representations to the Deposit Plan which suggest alternative or new site allocations. 
Anaerobic Digestion Processes whereby bacteria break down organic material in the absence of air, yielding biogas.
Ancient Tree A tree that has passed beyond maturity and is old or aged.  In this condition a tree has certain characteristics such as a hollow trunk and dead and decaying branches that create a special habitat suitable for many rare and specialised fungi, insects and animals.
Ancient Woodland

Land that has had a continuous woodland cover since accurate maps were first produced. It may be ancient semi natural woodland (ASNW), which retains a native tree and shrub cover that has not been planted, although it may have been managed by coppicing or felling and allowed to regenerate naturally, or it may be a plantation on Ancient Woodland sites (PAWS) where the original tree cover has been felled and replaced by planting but where the Ancient Woodland qualities of the site can be restored. 

Annual Monitoring Framework (AMR) A report submitted to the Welsh Government by the local planning authorities which assess the effectiveness of the LDP against a set of indicators and targets. 
Archaeologically Sensitive Areas (ASA) Designated areas of archaeological resource within the County, as identified by Glamorgan Gwent Archaeological Trust
Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) An area of countryside designated (by NRW) for its high landscape value, of national importance. The Gower Peninsula is designated as an AONB (see Gower AONB)
Biodiversity The richness and variety of living things (plants, birds, animals, fish and insects, etc.) that exist in a given area, and the habitats which support them
Brownfield Land See Previously Developed Land.
Cabins Cabins are generally timber construction, with wooden floors, roofs and solid doors. They contain beds and heaters and/or open fires and are erected for the purposes of providing holiday accommodation units. They are non-operational developments which meet the statutory definition of a caravan. They are often twin units which are joined on site and remain on the same pitch all year. 
Chalets Chalets are often single storey units which provide holiday accommodation. They are defined as permanent developments (operational developments) which do not fall under the statutory definition of a caravan.
City Region See Swansea Bay City Region
Climate Change Long-term changes in temperature, precipitation, wind and all other aspects of the Earth's climate. Often regarded as a result of human activity and fossil fuel consumption.
City Region See Swansea Bay City Region
Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) A charge that local authorities can choose to place on new developments in their area. The money is used to fund infrastructure to support development. 
Community Involvement Scheme (CIS) The CIS identifies how the Council involves consultation bodies and the public in the preparation of the Plan. The CIS is submitted to the Welsh Government as part of the Delivery Agreement for its agreement. 
Commuted Sum Commuted sums are monies received from developers and ring fenced for on/off-site use, development or maintenance. For example provision of infrastructure, provision and maintenance of open space, etc
Conservation Area  An area of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance. There are currently 31 conservation areas in the County. They vary greatly in character, due to the diverse mix of settlements found in the area, from small villages like Penrice and Cheriton, to towns such as Morriston, to urban areas such as Wind Street and Mumbles.
Controlled Waters Includes rivers, lakes, ponds, streams, canals, coastal waters, estuaries and groundwater.
Countryside All the land that lies outside the defined settlements, as identified on the Proposals Map, and includes small groups of dwellings that are dispersed across the County
Defined Settlements Settlements with boundaries. They consist of the main urban area and Key Villages.
Deposit The term referring to the process of publishing the detailed Plan policies and proposals for public consultation. Placing the Plan “on deposit”.
Deposit Plan  The draft of the Local Development Plan which is submitted to the Welsh Government for Public Examination.
Design and Access Statement (DAS) The requirement for a DAS and the content of such documents forms part of the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure (Wales) (Amendment) Order 2016. Design and Access statements accompany certain applications and must, amongst other things, explain the design principles and concepts that have been applied to the development, demonstrate the steps taken to appraise the context of the development and how the design of the development takes that context into account, explain the policy or approach adopted as to access and how policies relating to access in the development plan have been taken into account and explain how specific issues which might affect access to the development have been addressed
Development Plan  A document setting out the local planning authority's policies and proposals for the development and use of land and buildings in the authority's area. 
District Centre  A grouping of shops with appropriate supporting non -retail facilities and services, which collectively form a coherent centre and a focus for a community. District Centres will feature comparison goods outlets, as well as convenience shopping, and will support a good range of community facilities. They will typically comprise of around 50 units or more and be highly accessible to the community they serve by a range of travel modes, including walking and cycling. 
District Heating and Cooling A sustainable solution to the provision of heating, cooling and power. At the heart of a District Heating Network will be an energy centre(s) serving a range of buildings through a network of underground pipes and cables. 
Economically Viable  A development proposal is considered to be economically viable where the developer’s return (after allowing for all development costs ) is acceptable for the risk in undertaking the scheme.
Ecosystem  Resilience

The ability of ecosystems to cope with pressures, disturbances and change – either by resisting them, recovering from them or adapting to them. Achieving ecosystem resilience is about working at larger scales, promoting functional connections between natural places, ensuring they have high natural diversity, are in good condition and increasing their extent. Biodiversity is an essential underpinning element of all resilient ecosystems. All functioning and resilient ecosystems have a characteristic healthy and often rich biodiversity

Ecosystem Services

The multitude of resources and processes that are provided by natural ecosystems and utilised by humans. They include food and water provision, flood control, recreation and cultural benefits. 

Ecotone A transitional area of vegetation between two different plant communities, such as forest and grassland. 
EE+ Experian Economics were commissioned as part of the Economic Growth Assessment to provide employment forecasts for Swansea over the Plan period. In addition to a base line forecast, an Experian Economics upper end growth forecast (EE+) was devised using a +20% point adjustment targeted at specific employment sectors identified through stakeholder discussions and strategy documents as having local growth drivers.
Employment Land Bank Land available for employment development, including existing industrial and business parks, land with a current planning permission for employment use, and land allocated for employment in the current Development Plan.
Energy Infrastructure Services that supply energy required for development (e.g. electricity, gas, wind, tidal, solar).

Environmental Impact Assessment

 

(EIA)

A process that evaluates the likely environmental consequences of a development and considers how the severity of the impacts could be minimised. Applicants for certain types of development, often larger schemes, are required to submit an Environmental Statement to accompany a planning application, in order to set out the findings of the EIA process so that a decision on whether to grant permission may be better informed.

 

Environmental Noise 

   

Unwanted or harmful outdoor sound created by human activities, including noise emitted by means of transport, road, traffic, rail traffic, air traffic, and from sites of industrial activity.

European Sites These consist of Special Protection Areas (SPAs), Special Areas of Conservation (SACs), European Marine Sites (EMS) which are made up of Marine SPAs and Marine SACs. All European Sites are designated under European laws. It is UK and Welsh Government policy that Ramsarsites, proposed SPAs, proposed SACs and proposed EMSs are to be given the same level of protection as European sites. For the purposes of the Plan the term European Site therefore includes SPAs, SACs, EMS, Ramsar Sites, proposed SPAs, proposed SACs and proposed EMSs.
Fluvial Flooding Flooding from rivers
Geodiversity The variety of earth materials, forms and processes that constitute and shape the Earth. It covers geology, rocks and the process by which they change and geomorphology, landforms and topography
Geological The structure of a specific region of the earth.
Geomorphological   The form or surface features of the earth.
Gower Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) An area of the County of significant landscape quality that it is of national importance. The primary purpose of the AONB designation is to protect the natural beauty of the landscape.
Green Infrastructure  The network of multi-functional green space, encompassing both land and water (blue space). The Green Infrastructure areas include existing and new (created) features in both rural and urban areas. The Green  Infrastructure network delivers a wide range of Ecosystem Services including environmental and quality of life benefits for local communities.
Green Space Network The connectivity of areas of open space.
Green Wedge A designation of land around and between urban areas which aims to keep the land open and largely free from development during the Plan period. The main purpose of the Green Wedge designations in the Plan is to prevent the coalescence of urban areas.
Greenfield Sites Land which has never been built on, typically grassland, farmland or heath.
Groundwater Water that has percolated into the underground strata, including soils and may form underground ponds or streams, which may discharge above ground but lower down the catchment

Habitats Regulations Assessment

(HRA) 

A HRA is a requirement of European Directive 92/43/EEC which assesses the potential effects a Local Development Plan may have on one or more European sites (Natura 2000 sites). The assessment should conclude whether or not a proposal or policy in a Development Plan would adversely affect the integrity of the site in question.
Health Impact Assessment (HIA) A HIA is an overarching high level assessment that considers impacts on health, both positive and negative that will result from the implementation of the Plan 
Homezones Homezone is a residential street or group of residential streets designed to primarily meet the needs of pedestrians, cyclists, children and residents rather than motorists. The aim is to make these areas safer, healthier and more enjoyable by using design to limit the speed and use of cars, including measures to make roads unsuitable  for through traffic.
House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) A HMO is a property occupied by three or more tenants not living together as a single family household who share basic amenities such as a kitchen, bathroom or toilet facilities but have separate bedrooms. The term covers bedsits, non-self-contained flats, houses shared and lodgings.
Infrastructure Delivery Plan The Plan is supported by an Infrastructure Delivery Plan which provides further detail of the phasing, funding and delivery of infrastructure required for each allocated site.
Intermediate Housing Housing where prices or rents are above those of social rentedhousing but below market housing prices or rents. This can include equity sharing schemes. Intermediate housing differs from low cost market housing. Low cost market housing is private housing for open market sale or rent and the Local Authority does not control occupation. The Welsh Government does not consider low cost market housing to be affordable housing for the purpose of the land use planning system.
Invasive Non - Native Species (INNS)  Non -native animals, plants or other organisms that have the ability to spread, causing damage to the environment. Examples of such species that may be found on or adjacent to development sites in Swansea include Himalayan balsam and Japanese knotweed.
In-Vessel Composting (IVC) A method of composting which confines the composting materials within a building, container, or vessel.
Key Villages  Settlements, identified in the Plan, that are situated outside the main urban area and are considered suitable for small scale development 
Knowledge Economy An economy with increased dependence on knowledge information and high skill levels and the increasing need for ready access to all of these by the business and public sectors.
LANDMAP Land map is a Wales -wide landscape assessment that is organised by Natural Resources Wales (NRW) in partnership with the Welsh local authorities. Introduced in 1997 and updated in 2003, the LANDMAP methodology and quality assurance process ensures a nationally consistent resource for landscape planning and decision making. LANDMAP information is collected in a structured and rigorous way that is defined by five methodological chapters, the Geological Landscape, Landscape Habitats, Visual & Sensory, Historic Landscape and Cultural Landscape. 
Landscape

An area, as perceived by people, whose character is the result of the action and interaction of natural and/or human factors.

Landscape Character  An expression of pattern, resulting from particular combinations of natural (physical and biological) and cultural factors that make one place different from another.
LEAP Local Equipped Area for Play (and informal recreation)
Listed Buildings Buildings are 'Listed' because they are considered to be of special architectural or historic interest and as a result require special protection. Listing protects the whole building both inside and out and possibly also adjacent buildings if they were erected before 1st July 1948.  The prime purpose is to protect the building and its surroundings from changes which will materially alter the special historic or architectural importance of the building or its setting. There are 500+ listed buildings within the boundaries of the County ranging from telephone boxes, domestic residences and commercial premises.
Local Development Plan (LDP) The required statutory development plan for each local planning authority area in Wales under Part 6 of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004.
Local Flood Risk Arises from ordinary watercourses, surface water run-off (also known as pluvial flooding), groundwater and the interface between main rivers and surface water.
Local Nature Reserve (LNR) Non-statutory habitats of local significance designated by local authorities where protection and public understanding of nature conservation is encouraged.
Local Needs Market Housing Market housing which provides an appropriate range of types, sizes and designs to meet identified social and economic needs within the “Locality”, where the occupancy is restricted by legal agreement or condition to “persons with a local connection”.  See Appendix 6A for definitions of “Locality” and “persons with a location connection”.
Locality (Policy H 5)
A specific set of electoral wards, within which evidence of social and economic need shows that the local housing market experiences a range of particular pressures that limit the options available for local households to access private housing and can lead to households moving outside of the Locality.   The Locality includes the Council’s administrative wards of: Bishopston, Fairwood, Gower, Mayals, Newton, Oystermouth, Pennard, Penclawdd and West Cross.   All wards within the Locality fall within the Gower, Gower Fringe and West SHPZs.    The geographical area of the Locality is illustrated in Appendix 6A, which also sets out the eligibility criteria for assessing whether a prospective occupier would satisfy the test of local need.  
 
Locality (Policy TR 1) The relevant ‘locality’ for the purpose of a TNDIA will vary on a case-by-case basis, via a reasonable geographical hierarchy, depending on the nature and scale of the proposed development. Discussions should be held with the LPA to agree a scope of work prior to the submission of a TNDIA.
Locally Important Historic Assets A list of historic assets which have a heritage value and importance in a local context but are not nationally important enough to have a statutory listing.
Lodges See cabins
Master Planning The comprehensive planning of a particular area to ensure a mix of complementary land uses, environmental protection and quality of place.
National Nature Reserve (NNR)  Land of national nature conservation importance which is area designated by one of the four statutory nature conservation organizations in the UK for the conservation of wildlife or features of geology. It is an area which is amongst the best examples of a particular habitat or feature. NNRs are of national importance
Natural Heritage Refers to geology, land forms, biodiversity, natural beauty and amenity. It embraces the relationships between landform and landscape, habitat and wildlife, and their capacity to sustain economic activity and to provide enjoyment and inspiration. It includes statutorily designated sites, urban areas, the countryside, the coast and open water features.
Natural Resources Materials that occur naturally that are useful to man. Includes minerals, timber, land, ecosystems, etc.
Natural Surveillance  Design which enables observation, increases visibility and encourages social interaction, inclusive of measures such as street lighting, and the careful placement of fences or greenery to avoid providing concealment
NEAP  Neighbourhood Equipped Area for Play (and informal recreation, and provision for children and young people)
One Planet Development   Development that through its low impact either enhances or does not significantly diminish environmental quality. One Planet Developments should initially achieve an ecological footprint of 2.4 global hectares per person or less in terms of consumption and demonstrate clear potential to move towards 1.88 global hectares over time.
Open Windrow Composting  The production of compost by piling biodegradable matter into long rows (windrows).
Ordinary Watercourses All watercourses that are not designated main river, and which are the responsibility of Local Authorities to regulate.
Placemaking Is both a process and a tool to collectively design and manage the public realm to create quality places that are appealing, accessible, safe and support social interaction and amenities.
Plan Period The period of time a plan covers. The Swansea Local Development Plan (LDP) covers the period up to 2025.
Planning Obligation  This can be a legal undertaking by a developer only, or a legally binding agreement with the Local Planning Authority. Planning obligations are finalised before planning permission is granted and are used to ensure a development is carried out in a certain way.
Plantation on Ancient Woodland Sites (PAWS) Are sites which are believed to have been continuously wooded for over 400 years and currently have a canopy cover of more than 50 percent non-native conifer tree species.
Pluvial Flooding  Surface water flooding. This occurs when heavy rain saturates drainage systems and excess water cannot be absorbed.
Pods

Camping or ‘glamping’ Pods are usually of a timber construction and have a floor and roof. They often contain beds and heaters. They are usually constructed off-site and are transported onto the site as a complete unit. They are unlikely to be moved off-site when not in use and are therefore considered permanent structures.

They are not covered by the Caravan and Control of Development Act 1960, but and the Council considers they are akin to a static caravan and therefore treats them as such for the purposes of planning policy. 

Primary and Secondary Healthcare  Primary Healthcare provides the first point of healthcare, such as GP surgeries. Secondary Healthcare provides specialist care, usually in a hospital setting.
Protected Landscapes Protected landscapes are the Gower AONB, Special Landscape Areas (SLAs) and historic landscapes.
Protected Species Plant and animal species afforded protection under certain Acts and Regulations.
Public Rights of Way (PROW) Paths that the public have a right to pass. PROWs are inclusive of footpaths, bridleways and byways.
Qualitative Need Is the requirement for an improved retail offer and enhanced shopping facilities to provide adequate consumer choice and an attractive mix of shops, services and other land uses. Qualitative indicators can include: diversity of retail, leisure and service provision; accessibility by a range of transport; quality of buildings and shopfronts; and the availability of public open space and seating.
Quantitative Need Is the requirement for additional retail floorspace to meet a shortfall in provision, based on objective evidence relating to existing and forecast populations and levels of available expenditure in relation to the classes of goods to be sold.
Ramsar Sites  Sites designated under the Ramsar Convention to protect wetlands that are of international importance, particularly as waterfowl habitats
Regionally Important Geological/ Geomorphologica l Sites (RIGs)  Locally designated earth science sites, which are selected using nationally agreed criteria.
Renewable Energy For the purposes of planning policy, renewable energy is defined as those sources of energy, other than fossil fuels or nuclear fuel, which are continuously and sustainably available in our environment. This includes wind, water, solar, geothermal energy and plant material (biomass). Low carbon energy is the term used to cover technologies that are energy efficient (but does not include nuclear).
Residual Waste Residual waste remains after recyclable or compostable material has been removed from the waste stream.
Ribbon Development Linear residential development fronting roads radiating out of settlements.
Riparian Buffer Part of the greenspace system and are vegetated areas adjacent to an aquatic environment which helps protect a stream from the impact of adjacent land uses. 
Rural Enterprise Land related businesses including agriculture, forestry and other activities that obtain their primary inputs from the site, such as the processing of agricultural, forestry and mineral products together with land management activities and support services (including agricultural contracting), tourism and leisure enterprises.
Scheduled Ancient Monument Nationally important archaeological sites or historic building, given protection against unauthorised change governed by the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979. The 1979 Act provides the legislative framework for the protection of ancient monuments, supported by guidance in Welsh Office Circular 60/96.
Seasonal Touring Pitches Pitches that at are rented to a single occupier for the entire season
Self-Sufficiency Principle  Means that waste should be treated and managed within the region in which it is generated provided there are no unacceptable adverse effects. However due to geographic circumstances and the need for specialised installations for certain types of waste the principle of self-sufficiency cannot always be rigidly applied given that commercial considerations may override boundary issues. 
Significant Energy Consuming Developments  Major residential, employment or industrial developments that would require significant amounts of energy. 
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) A site identified under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended by the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000) as an area of special interest by reason of any of its flora, fauna, geological or physiographical features.
Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC) Locally important sites of nature conservation adopted by local authorities for planning purposes. (See also Local Nature Reserve). 
Social Infrastructure Refers to local amenities such as schools, GP surgeries, shops, etc that are crucial in creating sustainable communities 
Social Rented Housing Housing provided by Local Authorities and Registered Social Landlords where rent levels have regard to the Welsh Government guideline rents and benchmark rents.
Special Area Of Conservation (SAC) A site designated under the European Community Habitats Directive, to protect internationally important natural habitats and species.
Special Protection Area (SPA) A designation of protected sites classified in accordance with Article 4 of the European Union Directive on the Conservation of Wild Birds (79/409/EEC) which came into force in April 1979. They are classified for rare and vulnerable birds (as listed on Annex I of the Directive), and for regularly occurring migratory species.
Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) An appraisal of the environmental impact of larger scale plans and programmes (such as a LDP), where the implementation of its policies/strategies are considered to have significant environmental consequences. The process is a statutory requirement to comply with EU Directive 2001/42/EC, requiring early consultations with key agencies in order to compile an environmental report, the results of which feed into policy development and decision making.
Strategic Objectives A set of overarching intentions that elaborate on the Vision and that focus on the delivery of the Plan.
Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) Guidance written by the authority to supplement, elucidate and exemplify the policies within a Development Plan. It sets out more detailed thematic or site specific guidance on how certain policies will be applied.
Surface Water Run-of Rainfall or other precipitation which is on the surface or ground and has not entered a watercourse drainage system or public sewer
Sustainability Appraisal A process that considers the extent to which the components of sustainable development (economic development, social well -being, environmental protection and resource conservation) have been integrated within the Development Plan.
Sustainable Recreation 
Outdoor activity in the coast and countryside which makes the
most of the intrinsic attractions of the natural and cultural environment and is carried out to minimise impacts on the
special character of the place and on the enjoyment of other users and residents.  Ideally the activity contributes to the
enjoyment and health of the participants and to the economy of the host area.
Sustainable Drainage System  Use techniques that mimic natural drainage processes to control surface water run -off as close to its origin as possible, before its enters a watercourse.
Sustainable Tourism Sustainable tourism that respects both local people and the traveller, cultural heritage and the environment (UNESCO)
Swansea Central Area Complementary Districts Areas within the City Centre that adjoin the designated retail and leisure core. These have varying attributes and identities that serve to distinguish each area as an identifiable district.
Swansea Central Area Retail and Leisure Core The heart of the City Centre where retail and appropriate leisure and entertainment uses will be focused.
Tandem Development Consists of the development of one house immediately behind another (usually within the rear curtilage of the existing property and sharing the same access).
Tepees

Conical shaped structures with wooden poles which provide a stable frame. They often contain beds, wooden floors and wood burning stoves or open fires which make them more permanent than traditional tents.They are likely to remain on the same pitch all holiday season.

They are not covered by the Caravan and Control of Development Act 1960. 

The Undeveloped Coast Relates to lengths of natural coastline
The Waste Hierarchy
Sets out the order in which options for waste management
should be considered based on environmental impact. It has a statutory basis within the Waste Framework Directive and the implementing regulations applying to Wales.
 
Unconventional Oil and Gas Unconventional oil and gas development refers to coal bed methane or shale oil or gas using unconventional extraction techniques, including hydraulic fracturing.
Undergorund Coal Gasification A process by which air, oxygen, and steam are injected into coal seams at depth in order to partially combust the coal to create a gas known as Syngas.
Urban Area The built up area of the County. The urban area is clearly defined on the Proposals Map as all land within the urban settlement boundary.
Urban Developments Developments that are within an established settlement, namely the principle urban area as defined by the Urban Settlement Boundary (including the major physically detached settlements (Pontarddulais, Gorseinon/Penllergaer, Penclawdd/Crofty, Blue Anchor, Llanmorlais, Bishopston and Kittle)) as shown on the Proposals Map, and not within the countryside or identified Key Villages.
Veteran Tree A veteran tree that may not be old but because of its environment or life experiences has developed the valuable features of an ancient tree and provides an important wildlife habitat.
Vision Sets out the core purpose of the Plan.
Waste Planning Assessment A Waste Planning Assessment must be submitted with a planning application in order to demonstrate how a proposed waste development will contribute towards meeting Wales’ overriding objectives for dealing with waste.
Water Resources All underground, surface and coastal waters

Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation

(WIMD)

The Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation (WIMD) is the official measure of relative deprivation for small areas or Lower Super Output Areas (LSOAs) in Wales. The WIMD is made up of eight separate domains of deprivation inclusive of health, income; employment; education; housing; access to services; environment; and community safety. WIMD is used to give an overall deprivation rank for each of the Welsh 1,909 LSOAs and to give ranks for the separate deprivation domains for each of the LSOAs.
Welsh Language Sensitive Area Communities where the Welsh Language is an important part of the social fabric are identified as a Welsh Language Sensitive Area.
Windfall Sites  Sites not allocated in the Plan where residential development is subsequently granted planning permission.
Yurt Large tent like structures with wooden frames and solid front doors which often have beds and wood burning stoves within them, making them more permanent structures than traditional tents. They are likely to remain on the same pitch all holiday season and they are not covered by the Caravan and Control of Development Act 1960.