8. Implementation and Monitoring

Planning decisions

8.1 All relevant planning proposals should comply with Government guidance and the adopted Local Plan assisted by this SPD. Failure to do so may lead to a refusal for planning permission unless amendments can be made, planning conditions imposed or legal agreements introduced to minimise or counter any potential negative impact of the development site.

8.2 As part of the decision making process, the council will need to reach an appropriate balance between a wide range of competing planning objectives and material considerations in order to manage the development and use of land in the wider public interest. A balance will need to be struck between the relevant policies in the Local Plan and the specific circumstances of each case.

8.3 For full details on planning conditions, obligations and the Community Infrastructure Levy, please see separate documents entitled:

  • Planning Obligations SPD
  • Community Infrastructure Levy Charging Schedule

Legal agreements and affordable housing

8.4 Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended) allows the local planning authority to enter into a legally binding agreement with a landowner in association with the granting of planning permission in order to secure planning obligations such as contributions towards or the provision of affordable housing.

8.5 The council’s standard Section 106 agreement includes clauses to secure the provision of affordable housing. The agreement is made by deed between the landowner(s), Cambridge City Council, Cambridgeshire County Council and (may also include a registered provider) and any other person/organisation with an interest in the application site.

8.6 Where affordable housing is to be secured by Section 106, the council’s Legal Services will usually produce the first draft and the applicant will be required to pay the council’s legal and administrative costs incurred in negotiating and completing the deed and the costs of the transfer of any land to the council, as well as to pay a contribution towards the cost of monitoring for compliance.

(1)8.7 The proposed Heads of Terms of any Agreement will need to be established before instructions to draft a section 106 agreement are sent to Legal Services and the agreement must be completed before any planning permission can be issued.

8.8 Appendix 4: Affordable housing checklist illustrates what is expected as part of an affordable housing scheme and required through a section 106 agreement.

(3)8.9 A summary of some of the standard affordable housing clauses that form part of the Section 106 agreement are outlined below. It should be noted that the following list is not intended to be an exhaustive list.

  • Development cannot commence before the approval of an affordable housing scheme (to include information regarding the phasing of delivery and the proposed scheme description) and the proposed affordable housing provider;
  • Development cannot commence until the completion of a transfer of the affordable housing site or the grant of a long lease to an approved affordable housing provider/registered provider;
  • The affordable housing must be completed before any more than 50% of Market housing can be occupied;
  • A nominations agreement will be required to ensure the council retains control of who the new social rent/affordable rent homes will be let to;
  • Affordable housing units must meet, at minimum, level four of the Code for Sustainable Homes;
  • The percentage and split of wheelchair accessible units on sites over 20 dwellings.

8.10 Any references to financial contributions will normally be index linked to the Building Cost Information Service (BCIS) and take into account any price increases in the index during the time period that elapses between the date of the deed and when the contribution is due to be paid.

8.11 Further information can be obtained by contacting the council’s Legal Services. See Appendix 5 for details.

(1)8.12 A ‘mortgagee-in-possession’ clause will usually only be acceptable where a registered provider is involved and subject to a requirement that the mortgagee first actively seeks to dispose of properties to another registered provider approved by the council.

Monitoring and review

8.13 This SPD will be monitored, and reviewed and updated, if required, to ensure that it remains relevant and in accordance with the Cambridge Local Plan 2014. It will be monitored via the Annual Monitoring Report which the council prepares each year covering a wide range of planning matters. Annual Monitoring Reports can be found on the council’s website at www.cambridge.gov.uk/annual-monitoring-reports.

For instructions on how to use the system and make comments, please see our help guide.
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