North Somerset originally adopted their Core Strategy back in April 2012; however, after a number of recommended changes, a fully updated version was further adopted in January 2017. It states that it “sets out the broad long-term vision” and focuses “on place shaping and the creation of sustainable communities”.
Policy CS16 of the Core Strategy sets out the expectations regarding affordable housing in the area, this can be seen below:
As seen above, there are different requirements based on the number of dwellings proposed in a development and also various methods of delivery.
For developments providing 10+ units or sites of 0.3ha or more, an on-site provision of affordable housing will generally be required. For sites of 5-9 dwellings this may be sought either on-site or as a financial contribution. The benchmark aim is for 30% affordable housing, but this is noted as a starting point subject to negotiation.
Currently, a new Somerset Local Plan is in development which will incorporate all of the different districts that have their own policies now. However, there is no indication as to when this new document will be ready.
S106 Management would recommend a site-specific viability assessment to be carried out on all developments of 5+ dwellings in North Somerset, particularly schemes under 15 dwellings in the current market environment.