Exeter, 27th January 2012
- An Exeter
planning expert is urging developers and landowners to get involved in discussions on a new levy which she says could affect the future viability of major schemes in the city.
The Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) will allow local authorities to raise money from developers who are undertaking new schemes in their area in order to fund vital projects such as new roads, schools and hospitals.
Exeter City Council’s first round of consultation on the levy - which will set out proposed charging rates for each type of development - closes at the end of next week (3rd Feb).
And Catherine Caudwell, a consultant in the planning team at Jones Lang LaSalle in Exeter
, says developers and landowners must make their voices heard – or risk putting major projects in jeopardy in years to come.
“The idea behind the CIL is that the money raised from new development in a defined charging zone can be used to fund infrastructure that the local authority, local community and neighbourhoods are seeking to deliver,” says Catherine.
“The definition of ‘infrastructure’ includes new roads, flood defences, schools, hospitals and other health and social care facilities, plus park improvements, green spaces and leisure facilities.
“This will undoubtedly change the face of development in the area. The CIL could have a significant impact on the viability of land and development proposals and on the future growth of Exeter and its environs. The provision of much needed infrastructure through the levy will of course be of great benefit, but at the same time it may threaten the viability of some large-scale projects.”
Catherine Caudwell said that while financial relief from the CIL is available, this is entirely at the discretion of the local authority.
“It is therefore prudent for both developers and landowners to actively participate in the development of this document, by making representations to councils to help improve the viability of their land holdings when planning permission is secured.
“As Exeter Council gets to grips with introducing the CIL, its success will be judged on whether it provides for a robust, commercially informed and viable base for development - striking an appropriate balance between funding much needed infrastructure and the impact on development viability throughout the area.”