The National Planning Policy Framework requires local authorities to produce and update a Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA). This assessment considers sites that are, or may be, appropriate to have housing developed on them. It also identifies constraints which may need to be overcome and determines when the land or buildings might be developed for housing and how many dwellings will be delivered.
The assessment includes sites that already have planning permission (including those that may already be under construction but have further dwellings to be delivered). It also includes sites which have a resolution to grant planning permission subject to a Planning Agreement (S106). Sites are also included which do not yet have planning permission but have been identified as possible housing sites. These can include sites identified by the Council or promoted to us by landowners, agents or developers. Also included are housing allocations in the local plan which do not yet benefit from planning permission.
As required by the previous National Planning Policy Framework, the Council has used the assessment process to also consider opportunities for employment land and the assessment therefore also includes consideration of each site’s suitability and likely development potential for employment uses. The assessment therefore covers both housing and employment land and for this iteration and so we have called it a Strategic Housing and Employment Land Availability Assessment (SHELAA).
The base date of the assessments is 1 April 2018 and we have endeavoured to make the site information accurate at that date. It is acknowledged that the status of sites can change over time. For example a site might be granted planning permission, or lapse or construction might commence or a new application be made. The SHLAA will be updated periodically to try to ensure that the data is as up to date as possible at any given time.
When the 2018 assessment form was being developed, the Government had set out a requirement that local authorities should publish and maintain a Brownfield Land Register. However, no guidance was given at that time as to how the Register should be set out. The Council therefore decided to integrate the Register requirements into the SHELAA assessment.
Subsequently the Government published requirements on how the Brownfield Land Register should be presented. This requires the Register to be presented in a very particular way. Therefore, future iterations of the SHELAA may be amended to remove the section on Brownfield Land Register.
The SHELAA considers sites which would have a dwelling capacity of 10 or more dwellings and employment sites of 0.5ha or more. It considers the suitability, availability and achievability of each site in terms of their potential to deliver housing or employment uses. 10 dwellings is considered to be an appropriate threshold to base the assessment at because the Council’s housing windfall allowance, set out in the local plan, is based on evidence of small sites (1-9 dwellings). As such all of the housing sites in the SHELAA are ‘major’ housing sites as defined in the NPPF. A threshold of 0.5ha has been used for employment sites. This is considered appropriate given the historic industrial nature of the city.
The SHELAA is available as a map layer on our mapping portal.
Please note that the SHLAA/SHELAA is not a policy making or site allocation document. The assessment does not grant planning permission or allocate land for either housing or employment uses. Allocation of land or granting of planning permission is only done through other prescribed processes