7 Housing

Policy H 1

Provision of New Housing Development

All new housing development will be required to:

  1. contribute towards the provision of a balanced mix of dwellings within the local area in terms of size, type, tenure and affordability;
  2. be built at an appropriate density, which will be no less than 30 dwellings per hectare (net) throughout the city, and no less than 50 dwellings per hectare (net) on sites within or adjoining the mixed use areas listed in Policy MX1 "Development in Mixed-use Areas", town and neighbourhood centres and major transport nodes along good quality public transport corridors. These standards may be varied in individual circumstances, having regard to criteria A-H of this policy;
  3. provide a high quality residential environment and adequate level of amenity, in accordance with the design policies of the UDP;
  4. make adequate provision for open space in accordance with Policy H8 'Open Space Provision Associated with New Housing Development' and Policy R2 'Provision of Recreation Land and Facilities';
  5. where necessary, make an adequate contribution to local infrastructure and facilities required to support the development; and
  6. be consistent with other policies and proposals of the UDP.

In determining whether the proposed mix and density of dwellings on a site is appropriate and acceptable, regard will be had to the following factors:

  1. the size of the development;
  2. the physical characteristics of the site;
  3. the mix of dwellings in the surrounding area;
  4. any special character of the surrounding area that is worthy of protection;
  5. the accessibility of the site, and its location in relation to jobs and facilities;
  6. any specific need for, or oversupply of, residential accommodation that has been identified;
  7. the strategy and proposals of the Housing Market Renewal Initiative; and
  8. any other relevant housing, planning or regeneration strategies approved by the city council.

Reasoned justification

7.4 The provision of new homes is a key objective of the UDP, and the Regional Spatial Strategy for the north west (RPG13) requires that 530 new homes be provided annually within Salford. However, it is very important that the form of that housing development provides future occupiers with a high quality environment, in order to ensure its long-term success, as well as making an efficient use of land through appropriate densities. It is also vital that housing development supports the creation and protection of sustainable and balanced communities and avoids instability in local housing markets. It should contribute to the mix of housing types and to the provision of necessary supporting infrastructure and facilities which should be provided at the appropriate time and in accordance with Policy DEV5 'Planning Conditions and Obligations' (planning conditions and obligations).

7.5 In some circumstances, there will be a requirement to provide a certain proportion of affordable, family, or other special needs accommodation as part of residential development, either on-site or by contributing to their provision elsewhere. The provision of accommodation aimed at those with lower personal mobility, such as elderly or affordable housing, will be most important on sites close to town centres and public transport. There is a need to increase the level of family accommodation in many parts of the city, particularly around the new Albion High School, with some areas requiring larger four and five bedroom dwellings, whereas in certain parts there is a shortage of singles accommodation. In some areas, low cost new housing will be resisted, in order to ensure that there is not an oversupply or over concentration of such accommodation that would be to the detriment of the local housing market. The city council has commissioned a housing needs assessment to provide more information on the issues of need and oversupply, which will inform the implementation of this policy.

Policy H 3

Housing Improvement

Housing improvement schemes that comprise any or all of the following measures will be permitted where they are consistent with the strategy for the regeneration of the area, and with other policies and proposals of the plan:

  1. refurbishing and adapting the housing stock to meet local and special needs;
  2. Providing new and replacement housing, in a form appropriate to the needs of the local area, and wider regeneration objectives;
  3. improving residential environments and promoting environmental care measures;
  4. securing the provision of community and leisure facilities;
  5. enhancing open spaces, landscaped areas, and parks, in accordance with strategic and local needs;
  6. improving access to and within housing areas, particularly by public transport, cycling and walking; and
  7. clearing housing that is unfit, or for which there is little or no demand, or that is required for site assembly for regeneration purposes, as resources permit.

 

Reasoned justification

7.10 The city’s existing housing stock is a vital resource, and will provide approximately 90% of the dwellings required to house the city’s population by the end of the plan period. Maximising the potential of this resource is therefore an important objective of the UDP, for example by increasing the number of dwellings that meet the government’s Decent Homes Standard and other health and safety benchmarks.

7.11 A significant number of existing dwellings within the city do have some physical problems, and this could potentially increase given that approximately 20% of the housing stock dates from before 1914. There are also problems of low demand in certain areas, even where the quality of the housing is not an issue. Housing of poor quality or low demand is frequently accompanied by significant social and economic issues, and can contribute to the decline of an area. This may require a more holistic approach to the improvement of an area.

7.12 In such circumstances, there may be a need for selective demolition of unfit properties, or those for which there is little or no demand, in order to help secure the wider, long-term improvement and regeneration of an area. This may also require the demolition of some occupied dwellings in order to assemble a larger site, to enable the regeneration of the area. It is intended that all dwellings cleared during the plan period should be replaced and where appropriate replacement dwellings will be provided on or close to the cleared site.

Policy H 4

Affordable Housing

In areas where there is a demonstrable lack of affordable housing to meet local needs, developers will be required, by negotiation with the city council, to provide an element of affordable housing, of appropriate types, on all residential sites over 1 hectare, irrespective of the number of dwellings, or in housing developments of 25 or more dwellings.

Reasoned justification

7.13 Affordable housing is housing which meets the needs of households whose incomes are not sufficient to allow them to access decent and appropriate housing. It may come in many forms including social housing to rent, affordable private renting, shared ownership, key worker housing, and low cost home ownership. The Government define a decent house as one which is “wind and weather tight, warm and has modern facilities”. To meet this definition homes must:

  1. meet the current statutory minimum standard;
  2. be in a reasonable state of repair;
  3. have reasonably modern facilities and services; and
  4. provide a reasonable degree of thermal comfort.

7.14 Appropriate housing is that which meets the needs of a particular individual/household in terms of size, type and tenure.

7.15 Providing affordable housing assists in the creation and maintenance of balanced and stable communities, where a wide range of housing needs can be met. In 2003 the council’s Housing Market Demand Survey identified a total of 11,812 households in housing need, of whom 1,241 were deemed to be living in unaffordable accommodation. The study adopts a measure of unaffordability related to the income and the size of a household. This was taken as being where the housing costs are greater than 30% of the net equivalent household income, where that income is less than 60% of the regional average income. Its analysis suggested a demand for around 1,000 affordable dwellings from households currently in need or those likely to fall into need over the next 5 years (to 2008).

7.16 However, that does not mean that this amount of affordable housing needs to be provided in the form of new buildings over that period, nor that the level of need is the same in all parts of the city. Salford has many properties which people choose not to occupy because they are not of an appropriate standard, or because they find the area unattractive. Substantial provision of affordable housing may therefore be made by the improvement of the housing stock (Policy H3 'Housing Improvement') or the improvement of the areas in which they lie, including through clearance. On this basis, the survey suggests that no additional social rented stock may be required. Other provision can be made through conversions of existing buildings (Policy H5 'Provision of Residential Accommodation within Existing Buildings'). Nonetheless, there will be some requirement for affordable dwellings to meet particular needs, for example for certain types of dwelling, or in particular parts of the city.

7.17 The city’s housing needs assessment is currently being updated. Its main findings will be incorporated into a local development document. This will set out indicative targets for housing sites allocated under Policy H9 'Sites for New Housing' and for the mixed use areas, and identify the overall number of affordable homes to be sought in the plan period and a broad indication of how provision will be made. It will also provide guidance on the identification of the areas where there is demonstrable need and the proportion of affordable homes to be provided on suitable sites.

7.18 In the meantime, the policy includes a general requirement for affordable housing to be provided as part of housing developments above a set threshold, but indicates that an element of affordable housing will be sought in them only where there is a demonstrable need. In assessing whether a need exists in relation to any proposal, the council will have regard to up-to-date information deriving from the housing needs assessment. The proportion of affordable homes to be provided in any development will be calculated having regard to the level of need, the size of the development and the effect on viability. Consequently, no fixed proportion of dwellings per development is set in the policy.

7.19 Planning conditions or obligations will be used, in accordance with DEV 5 'Planning Conditions and Obligations', to ensure that the affordable housing provided is occupied initially and, where appropriate, in perpetuity, only by those people falling within particular categories of need.

Policy H 5

Provision of Residential Accommodation within Existing Buildings

The sub-division of dwellings into smaller units of accommodation, and the conversion of non-residential property into residential use, will only be permitted where:

  1. the proposal would not have an unacceptable impact on the amenity of neighbouring properties, or on the character of the surrounding area by reason of:
    1. noise and disturbance;
    2. loss of privacy;
    3. the siting, design and appearance of any external alterations or extensions;
    4. the cumulative effects of the concentration of such uses and the intensity of occupation; or
    5. parking and servicing arrangements;
  2. the development makes satisfactory provision of amenity and open space;
  3. the development would not have an unacceptable impact on highway safety as a result of traffic generation, access, parking and servicing; and
  4. the development would not have an unacceptable impact on the regeneration of the local area.

Reasoned justification

7.20 The sub-division of dwellings and the conversion of non-residential property are important sources of new housing provision, and can help to satisfy housing needs, including that for affordable housing, in the city. However, it is important to ensure that only good quality schemes are permitted, which provide both an appropriate level of amenity for future occupiers, and do not result in a significant loss of amenity for neighbouring occupiers.

Policy H 6

Residential Social and Community Uses

Planning permission will be granted for the development of residential social and community uses provided that the following criteria are met:

  1. there is a demonstrated need for the facility;
  2. it does not result in an over-concentration of such uses in any one area or an overintensive use of the site or building;
  3. it is located close to public transport, shops, and social and community facilities;
  4. there would be no unacceptable adverse impact on the amenity of surrounding residents and uses, or on highway safety;
  5. adequate provision is made for private amenity/open space within the curtilage of the site;
  6. adequate provision is made for access, car parking and servicing; and
  7. the proposal is compatible with wider regeneration objectives, and is consistent with other policies and proposals of the UDP.

Reasoned justification

7.21 Residential social and community uses include residential care homes, nursing homes, hostels, shelters, halfway houses, children’s homes, and similar uses that span the boundary between residential and social/community use. Such uses form an important part of the residential options available to the citizens of Salford. They are generally compatible with residential areas, but it is sometimes necessary to impose certain restrictions in order to protect the amenity of local residents and the character of the area. The location of these uses close to local facilities, such as shops, post offices and other local amenities, is considered important for the benefit of residents who may have impaired mobility. Salford’s ‘Supporting People Strategy’ provides more information on the city council’s approach to such uses.

7.22 The provision of amenity space around buildings used for residential social and community uses is important for the enjoyment of residents and also for the protection of the character of the areas in which they are situated. Proposals to extend and/or alter buildings in these uses will be judged against the other policies of the UDP, but they should retain sufficient amenity space, ensure there is no unacceptable loss of privacy to neighbouring uses, and provide satisfactory parking, service and access arrangements.

7.23 The over-concentration of residential social and community uses within an area, and the intensity of use of a property, can have a profound effect on the character of an area. Control of such uses needs to be exercised, particularly in certain areas of the city, in order to protect the residential character of the area and the amenity of its residents. The impact of increased traffic generation on residential amenity and traffic safety will also need careful consideration, as will the effect of car parking and service provision on the character or appearance of the area.

Policy H 7

Provision of Student Accomodation

Planning permission will be granted for the provision of student residential accommodation provided that the following criteria are met:

  1. there is a proven need for the development;
  2. the development is in a location with very good access by public transport, walking and cycling to local facilities and to the educational establishment that it is designed to serve;
  3. there would be no unacceptable impact on the amenity of the occupiers of neighbouring developments;
  4. the use would not have an unacceptable impact, either in itself or cumulatively, on the character of the area; and
  5. the proposal is compatible with wider regeneration objectives, and is consistent with other policies and proposals of the UDP.

Reasoned justification

7.24 The University of Salford, Salford College, and the other universities and colleges within and on the edge of the city, create a significant need for student residential accommodation in Salford. It is important that this need is satisfied, but only in appropriate locations, which have good access both to the educational establishments they serve and to local facilities such as shops. The University of Salford campuses, and those parts of the Chapel Street West mixed-use area (MX 1/2) closest to them, are likely to be the most appropriate location, although student accommodation will not be allowed to dominate at the expense of the overall mix of uses and vitality of the area.

7.25 Student accommodation is normally not entirely self-contained, with shared facilities such as kitchens and living areas, and typically consists of smaller units than would be found in apartment developments. This relatively specialist nature of such accommodation can limit the options for reuse without major refurbishment work, so it is essential that a need for new student accommodation is proven by the applicant before any proposals are given planning permission.

7.26 An overconcentration of student accommodation can be detrimental to the character of an area, reducing the level of activity at certain times of the year, and such development will be controlled to ensure that this does not occur and that a balanced population is retained in any one area. The city council will work with the University of Salford, Salford College and other appropriate education providers to prepare a strategy for student accommodation.

Policy H 8

Open Space Provision Associated with New Housing Development

Planning permission for housing development will only be granted where adequate and appropriate provision is made for formal and informal open space, and its maintenance over a twenty-year period.

The amount of open space to be provided shall meet the identified need deriving from the development. It shall be calculated having regard to the aim of achieving the standards of Policy R2 'Provision of Recreation Land and Facilities' and by reference to the approach set out in supplementary planning documents.

The open space will be provided either as part of the development or through an equivalent financial contribution based on a standard cost per bed space for both capital and maintenance. The exact form and location of provision will need to be identified in agreement with the city council.

Where provision is to be made within the development site, it must be designed as an integral part of the development, ensuring that both users and surrounding residents are provided with a satisfactory level of amenity.

Reasoned justification

7.27 The appropriate provision, improvement and maintenance of open space facilities is a vital element of successful residential areas. The Salford Greenspace Strategy will inform this process. New housing development creates additional demand for such facilities, and it is therefore important that this is satisfied either through the provision of new facilities or the improvement of existing ones. Any new housing development should make adequate provision for, and maintenance of, adult, youth and children’s facilities, including sports pitches, equipped children’s play areas and amenity open space to meet demand that it may create, based on the standards contained in Policy R2 'Provision of Recreation Land and Facilities'. Where the housing is to meet special needs, for example sheltered housing, it may be appropriate to provide alternative recreational, social or community facilities related to the development in the form of on-site amenity space and off-site recreational facilities that would be attractive to older people.

7.28 The exact form of provision will need to be agreed between the developer and the city council, having regard to the likely demand for facilities generated by the proposed development, the existing quality, level and type of recreation and open space provision in the area, and how the benefits of investment in new or improved facilities can be maximised for the whole community. The Salford Greenspace Strategy will, when prepared as a supplementary planning document, inform this process. Where possible, the provision and improvement of open space should secure nature conservation enhancements, and assist in progressing towards the targets set out in the Greater Manchester Biodiversity Action Plan.

7.29 Wherever practicable, and where the provision will be most effective in meeting the needs generated by the development, it will be preferable for it to be made within the development site. Where it is not practicable, or where the provision would be more effectively provided elsewhere, it may be appropriate for the development either to provide facilities off-site or to contribute financially to its provision off-site, including contributing to the improvement and maintenance of existing facilities in the local area. This will help to ensure that the facilities that are provided are of a high quality, easily accessible, and cost-efficient to maintain. In very specific circumstances, it may be appropriate for the provision to be in the form of a contribution towards new or improved indoor facilities of an equivalent value, where this forms part of a coordinated approach to the enhancement of local recreation facilities. Where appropriate, smaller financial contributions will be placed in an open space fund until such time as they can be amalgamated with other contributions to allow agreed open space priorities in the area to be achieved.

7.30 The formula for the financial contribution per bed space and other detailed matters relating to the implementation of this policy, including the use of planning obligations, where appropriate, will be included in supplementary planning documents.

Policy H 9

Sites for New Housing

The following sites are allocated for housing development in accordance with Policy ST2 'Housing Supply':

  1. Flax Street, Broughton (1.3 ha);
  2. Dudley Street, Broughton (0.6 ha);
  3. Former Windsor High School, Langworthy (3.8 ha);
  4. Cumberland Street/Wheater’s Terrace, Broughton (1.6 ha);
  5. Former Hanover Court, Bury New Road, Kersal (0.6 ha);
  6. Newbury Place, Bury New Road, Broughton (0.6 ha);
  7. Ordsall Drive, Ordsall (1.5 ha);
  8. Worsley Road North/Thorpe Street, Walkden North (1.0 ha); and
  9. Former Weaste Tram Depot, Eccles New Road, Weaste & Seedley (1.1 ha).

Reasoned justification

7.31 All of the sites listed in this policy are considered to be suitable for housing development. Their allocation will help to ensure a balanced approach to the provision of new housing, which places a very strong emphasis on repopulating Central Salford and securing the redevelopment of its previously developed sites. In accordance with Policy ST11 'Location of New Development' and Policy H2 'Managing the Supply of Housing', all of the sites are considered to be suitable to be brought forward for development at any time, provided that it would not result in a significant oversupply of housing.

H 9/1. Flax Street, Broughton (1.3 ha)

7.32 Development of this prominent vacant site, in the Housing Market Renewal Area with a substantial frontage to Blackfriars Road and the River Irwell, would complete the Trinity Riverside residential development. The development would need to be of reasonably high density (at least 50 dwellings per hectare net) and be designed to a high standard, reflecting the site’s prominent location. Any development would need to contribute towards the provision of an improved pedestrian walkway alongside the river, and provide access to it.

H 9/2. Dudley Street, Broughton (0.6 ha)

7.33 This vacant site to the north of Dudley Street is located within the Housing Market Renewal Area and its redevelopment for residential use will help to consolidate the surrounding housing area. Development will need to achieve an average net density of at least 35 dwellings per hectare.

H 9/3. Former Windsor High School, Churchill Way, Langworthy (3.8 ha)

7.34 This school site is now vacant and is suitable for housing combined with other uses such as offices, light industry, community and recreational uses, all of which have the potential to contribute to the wider regeneration of the area. The most appropriate form of development will be considered in that context in the Pendleton Area Action Plan, which is to be produced as a development plan document in the next few years.

7.35 Any residential development would need to include a significant proportion of family accommodation, provide for the replacement of the site’s sports pitches, and contribute to improvements to the nearby Clarendon Park. The beneficial location close to Salford Precinct town centre means that a minimum net density of at least 40 dwellings per hectare would need to be achieved. The site is within the Housing Market Renewal Area.

H 9/4. Cumberland Street / Wheater’s Terrace, Broughton (1.6 ha)

7.36 This clearance site in the heart of Lower Broughton and within the Housing Market Renewal Area offers a significant redevelopment opportunity, complementing the larger former Lowry High School site to the north and other clearance sites in the area, all within the context of the proposed Area Action Plan for Lower Broughton, which is to be prepared as a Development Plan Document. It will be important to incorporate a green link through the site, and it may also be appropriate to provide an extension to Grosvenor Park on the eastern part, and/or remodel Grosvenor Park itself, in order to support the environmental enhancement of the area. Development should achieve a minimum net density of 35 dwellings per hectare.

H 9/5. Former Hanover Court, Bury New Road, Kersal (0.6 ha)

7.37 The site is situated within the Housing Market Renewal Area and was formerly occupied by a large apartment block. It occupies a prominent position at the junction of Bury New Road and Northumberland Street, on a key route into Manchester city centre. It is suitable for residential development, or mixed-use development incorporating a significant element of housing. Development should achieve a minimum density of 45 dwellings per hectare, with significantly higher densities potentially being appropriate given the location on a proposed Quality Bus Corridor.

H 9/6. Newbury Place, Bury New Road, Broughton (0.6 ha)

7.38 Situated within the Housing Market Renewal Area, there is potential for the redevelopment of this existing local retail parade for a high quality scheme, taking advantage of the prominent frontage along Bury New Road, which is a proposed Quality Bus Corridor and key link to the regional centre. A single-use residential development, or a mixed-use development incorporating a significant element of housing together with local needs shopping and/or other commercial development, would be appropriate. Development should achieve a minimum density of 45 dwellings per hectare.

H 9/7. Ordsall Drive, Ordsall (1.5 ha)

7.39 This predominantly cleared site within the Housing Market Renewal Area occupies an important and prominent position opposite the Ordsall Lane mixed-use area (MX 1/4), and there is potential for a high quality, high-density residential scheme that complements the ongoing developments within that mixed-use area. Development should achieve a minimum density of 50 dwellings per hectare, although significantly higher densities are likely to be acceptable given the location on the edge of the Regional Centre.

H 9/8. Worsley Road North / Thorpe Street, Walkden North (1.0 ha)

7.40 Part of the site is currently occupied, but has potential for residential development, taking advantage of the location adjoining Bolton Road and Blackleach Country Park. Development should achieve a minimum density of 35 dwellings per hectare.

H 9/9. Former Weaste Bus Depot, Eccles New Road, Weaste and Seedley (1.1 ha)

7.41 The site, which is in the Housing Market Renewal Area, has excellent public transport accessibility, being directly opposite a Metrolink stop, and is considered suitable for residential development. The design of the frontage to Eccles New Road will be particularly important, and development should achieve a minimum density of 50 dwellings per hectare.