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EM6  General Criteria for New Employment Development  Policy

Applications for all new employment development, on sites allocated for employment use or within Primarily Industrial Areas, including proposals for the conversion, re-use or extension of existing premises, will be permitted subject to Policy EM7 and all the following criteria:

(i) the proposal does not lead to an unacceptable loss of amenity, have an adverse effect on the operations of neighbouring uses or compromise the future development of land in the vicinity for employment or other uses - visually intrusive activities, or those involving the handling of wind-blown materials, will be required to carry out all operations, including loading, within a building;

(ii) satisfactory access to the development can be provided, before it comes into use, in a way which is not detrimental to the amenity of the area;

(iii) the proposal does not generate traffic in excess of that which can be accommodated by the existing or proposed highway network;

(iv) adequate off-street car and cycle parking is provided - servicing for vehicles should be to the rear of the premises, or where the site lies near residential property, situated at the far side of the building;

(v) the siting, scale, design, choice of materials, boundary treatment and landscaping is of a satisfactory standard and is in keeping with neighbouring uses - temporary buildings or structures will only be permitted in exceptional circumstances and only for a period not exceeding five years; and

(vi) where appropriate, the proposal also complies with the policies set out within Section 21 of the UDP.

For the purposes of Policy EM6 "employment development" is defined as that falling within Classes B1, B2 or B8 of the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987, together with the following uses which are specifically excluded from the Use Classes Order:

(i) land or buildings used for motor vehicle sales, display, hire or repair;
(ii) scrapyards, or yards used for the storage or distribution of minerals or the breaking of motor vehicles; and
(iii) uses involving the manufacture, processing, keeping or use of a hazardous substance above its controlled quantity.

Reasoned justification :

This justification applies to Policies EM6 and EM7.

5.23. Policy EM6 sets out general criteria which all proposals for employment uses, including the conversion, re-use or extension of existing premises, must satisfy. Policy EM7 identifies additional environmental factors to which the Local Planning Authority will have regard when assessing proposals which satisfy Policy EM6. These policies should be read in conjunction with the other policies and proposals, in Section 5 of the UDP, which identify the appropriate types of employment development for individual locations. General design guidelines, together with a fuller explanation of the industrial Use Classes can be found in Supplementary Planning Guidance Note 1.

5.24 As already indicated, the strategy set out in Section 5 of the UDP allows for flexibility in terms of broad land-use allocations while ensuring that individual developments are of a high standard. In addition to their economic benefits, new employment development should make a positive contribution to the Borough's environment and should not result in a loss of amenity, particularly in respect of neighbouring uses.

5.25 In every case the aim must be to achieve a high standard of development which will be of sufficient quality to ensure the long-term attractiveness of the area in which the proposal is located. Particularly high standards of development will be expected where the proposal is directly visible from main transport routes into and through the Borough and where the development will directly influence the image of the Borough as a whole.

5.26 Special consideration needs to be given to potentially polluting or hazardous developments. While it is not the function of the planning system to duplicate the roles of the statutory authorities concerned with these issues, the UDP has an important role to play in controlling the location of development which has the potential to cause hazard or pollution. Separate policies dealing with potentially polluting or hazardous development are found in Section 21 of the UDP.

5.27 The Council is keen to reduce congestion and see provision for a choice of means of transport. The Council will, therefore, have regard to the extent to which a proposal is accessible by a choice of means of transport. The Council will also seek to encourage the introduction of public transport services to new developments where such services do not already exist.