12,500 homes to need to be built in Uttlesford by 2033, report recommends

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- Credit: Archant

Some 12,500 new homes need to be built in Uttlesford over the next 18 years, according to a study just released.

This means 568 new dwellings a year until 2033.

However, this is slightly less than the 580 homes recommended by the Uttlesford Local Plan Inspector in December 2014. Of those 12,500, some 1,900 have already been built and some 5,100 others already have planning permission and therefore should be built within the next three years.

The figures come from the Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA), which was commissioned by Uttlesford District Council and partner authorities East Herts, Epping Forest, and Harlow. They will be used to produce the new Local Plan.

The report, carried out by consultants Opinion Research Services, also makes further recommendations regarding affordable housing targets, and says some 13,600 affordable homes are needed for West Essex and East Hertfordshire over the same period.

The key objective of the SHMA is to provide an evidence base to establish the housing need for the area, not to say where the homes should go, and this month, the council will begin public consultation where residents will be able to have their say.

The West Essex and East Hertfordshire Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA) has been produced by independent consultants on behalf of East Herts, Epping Forest, Harlow and Uttlesford District councils.

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The independent and detailed technical study sets out the potential scale of future housing requirements based upon a range of housing, economic and demographic factors, trends and forecasts.

It suggests a total of 46,100 homes are needed across the four areas up to 2033.

A spokesman for Uttlesford District Council stressed that the figure is a recommendation. it is not a housing target for the district but will form a key part of the evidence base for the emerging draft Uttlesford Local Plan which is currently being worked on.

Councillor Susan Barker, Cabinet Member for Environmental Services with responsibility for the Local Plan, said: “Publication of the SHMA represents a major milestone on the road to getting a new Local Plan in place. The figures suggested are broadly in line with expectations.

“The council now needs to start considering where the most suitable development locations will be.

“There will be a public consultation on the strategic options in a few weeks’ time, and residents are invited to submit any evidence they think the council needs to take account of as it undertakes this difficult task.”

The public consultation will start on Thursday, October 22 and end on Friday, December 4. It will include three public meetings where residents and others will be invited to put their questions to councillors and council officers working on the Local Plan.

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