Increasingly LPAs are seeking to include Viability Reviews in S106 agreements and Unilateral Undertakings.
Viability reviews were initially conceived in order to bring development forward (hence only engaged if development was delayed) or for multi-phased permissions. LPAs are now seeking to extend their reach, often without appropriate policy justification.
Reviews are a cumbersome and expensive additional layer of bureaucracy, which should only be imposed where Local Planning policy requires, and the tests of CIL Regulation 122 are engaged.
Such requirements need to be factored into your viability negotiations, so that the any requirement for a viability review is specifically negotiated 'out' in any viability settlement.
In those cases where a review is endorsed by Planning Policy and hence unavoidable; care should be taken with the precise drafting of the planning obligation in order to avoid unexpected future expense. If wording is not carefully agreed, these can impact commercial interests and land values.
S106 Management are familiar with common approaches used by LPAs and are well equipped to spot familiar drafting 'traps' which can easily be missed.
If you are in a position where a previously imposed viability review has been triggered, we will be pleased to assist you in checking the review is required and providing the viability reporting required.
We will be pleased to take your call irrespective of whether it concerns a new or historic review obligation.