Decision Maker: Cabinet
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: Yes
Is subject to call in?: No
(Councillors Atkinson, Biederman, Connett, Dewhirst and Hannaford attended in accordance with Standing Order 25(2) and spoke to this item).
The Cabinet considered the Report of the Head of Planning, Transportation and Environment (PTE/18/24), seeking approval to submit a bid to the Housing Infrastructure Fund, circulated prior to the meeting in accordance with regulation 7(4) of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012.
The Report outlined that a successful Expression of Interest was submitted to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) in September 2017 for funding from the Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) towards infrastructure to support development at South West Exeter, with a package totalling £44.7 million. In March 2018, the Council was advised the Expression of Interest was successful and was invited to submit a full bid. The Report, therefore, sought approval to proceed with submitting a full bid to the MHCLG in time for the 10 September 2018 deadline.
The Report outlined the purpose of the HIF which was a Government capital grant scheme of £4.8 billion which had been identified to support the delivery of infrastructure related to the building of new homes.
It also explained the South West Exeter area in terms of its strategic allocation of 2,500 dwellings and 5 hectares of employment on the edge of Exeter, which also spanned two administrative areas – Teignbridge District Council and Exeter City Council. The site was complex, straddling a key arterial road (the A379), was close to the Exe Estuary Special Protection Area and multiple land ownerships.
There were two streams to the HIF – marginal viability funding and forward funding, the former allowed lower tier authorities to bid for up to £10 million to unlock development and the forward funding stream was for higher tier authorities and allowed bids of up to £250 million.
The table within the Report identified the infrastructure expected to be included in the final submission for the HIF bid, which included pedestrian/cycle bridge to provide a crossing of the A379 (£2.5m), servicing of school site to enable delivery of the approved Free School (£2m), electricity upgrade – new primary sub-station to provide additional capacity (£2m), contributions towards Marsh Barton Rail Station (£2m), three new signal junctions on the A379 and widening of 1.5km of highway (£10m), southern spine road through multiple landownerships to unlock all parcels south of the A379 and provide an early public transport corridor (£12m), capacity upgrade to ‘Devon Hotel’ roundabout on the A379 to deliver sufficient capacity for development and maintain access to large development site (£2.5m), realignment of Chudleigh Road and new signal junction to address a safety concern and unlock development to the north of the A379 (£6m), provision of foul drainage along the A379 (£2m), Alphington Village enhancements (£0.5m), new access roundabout on the A379 (£2.5m) and Suitable Alternative Natural Green Space (SANGS) to mitigate the impact on the Exe Estuary (£2.7m), totalling £46.7m (with further work being undertaken to progress design and more detailed cost estimates).
The Cabinet noted that any risks associated with overspends were expected to rest with the County Council and developers. Environmental impacts of the scheme had also been considered, although there would be a need to consider the detailed impacts of individual elements, which would be undertaken through detailed design.
The matter having been debated and the options and/or alternatives and other relevant factors (e.g. financial, sustainability, carbon impact, risk management, equality and legal considerations and Public Health impact) set out in the Head of Service’s Report and/or referred to above having been considered:
It was MOVED by Councillor Davis, SECONDED by Councillor Hart, and
(a) that the proposal to submit a bid to the Housing Infrastructure Fund, administered by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, to assist in delivering infrastructure to support development at South West Exeter be approved;
(b) that the Cabinet delegate authority to the Head of Planning, Transportation and Environment in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Infrastructure, Development and Waste to agree the final contents of the submission;
(c) that the proposal to enter into a legal agreement with developers and land owners to secure appropriate repayment of the Housing Infrastructure Fund to the County Council be approved; and
(d) that agreement be given to progress negotiations with the Education and Skills Funding Agency to deliver a new all through school, which will require planning permission and the acquisition of land.
Reason Key: Strategic, Political or Financial Significance;
Divisions Affected: Alphington & Cowick; Exminster & Haldon;
Other reasons / organisations consulted
Contact: Dave Black, Head of Planning, Transportation and Environment Email: email@example.com.
Report author: Dave Black
Publication date: 11/07/2018
Date of decision: 11/07/2018
Decided at meeting: 11/07/2018 - Cabinet