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Where to build

Our current Local Plans already allocate land for new homes and businesses, which will be built out during the lifetime of the new PlanIn the First Conversation we identified other major sites, which will feed into the development strategy – these include North East Cambridge and Cambridge Airport. Alongside this, we need to test how much additional land we need for development, and where this should be. There are a range of possible locations – and it is likely that the eventual strategy may involve a mix of these approaches. 

The Councils must consider the implications of the choices open to us and how they impact sustainability for the area. The locations we choose will be influenced by many different factors: 

  • Responding to climate change and new transport infrastructure – our net zero carbon target suggests that we should site development in places which can reduce the need to travel by private car.  
  • Increasing biodiversity and green spaces - this could be through large scale new development that could come with accompanying large-scale green space, or contributions from smaller sites that can be pooled towards providing green space elsewhere. 
  • Promoting wellbeing and social inclusion– locating new development where it can bring wider benefits to existing communities in terms of access to services, facilities and green space. Development could also enable access to a range of job opportunities for both existing and new communities. 
  • Creating great places– siting development where it provides opportunities to protect, enhance and improve places and deliver high quality design. 
  • Jobs – the success of the high technology jobs cluster in and around Cambridge is based in part upon businesses in key sectors being allowed to locate where there is good access to each other and to Cambridge so that businesses can work together. Equally, allowing some job growth in rural areas can help sustain local services and sustain vibrant communities. 
  • Homes – the distance and journey time between homes and jobs, and encouraging residents to use sustainable transport to get to work. We will need to consider whether different locations affect viability for delivering affordable homes. 
  • Infrastructure – access to existing and planned public transport, walking and cycling, would enable people to get to live their lives in a way that reduces greenhouse gas emissions. 
  • Small sites - national planning policy requires us to identify small sites, no larger than one hectare, to accommodate at least 10% of the housing requirement. 

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