New development in the local plan will need to be supported by new and improved infrastructure, including schools, health facilities, roads, public transport and other community facilities. The Greater Norwich authorities are working with infrastructure providers to identify the likely infrastructure requirements to support the GNLP. Planning flexibly for a changing world will also mean that we are able to adapt to changes that are difficult to predict at present (for example, digital communication improvements and increasing use of electric vehicles).
Alongside the local plan is the Greater Norwich Infrastructure Plan (GNIP). Updated yearly, the GNIP covers education, transport, community and green infrastructure projects which will support the development scheduled to happen in the area. By working together the Greater Norwich authorities have a stronger voice when negotiating with government. For example, working in partnership helped make the case for dualling the A11, constructing the Broadland Northway, and for planning improvements at the Thickthorn junction to link the A11 and A47.
The City Deal, agreed with government in 2013, gives the Greater Norwich authorities the ability to borrow up to £80 million at a reduced rate from the Public Works Loan Board. Within that, Greater Norwich authorities negotiated £20 million of borrowing for short-term loans to developers to provide infrastructure, known as the Local Infrastructure Fund. The remaining loan facility was split as a £40 million contribution to the Broadland Northway, with approximately £10 million set aside towards the Long Stratton by-pass and £10 million for works in the City Centre.
Funding for infrastructure also comes from Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL). Since 2014, the Greater Norwich Growth Board (GNGB) has overseen decisions on investment to support infrastructure and has contributed £13.6m from their pooled CIL towards projects that are strategically supporting growth. The Greater Norwich authorities pool CIL money together to deliver infrastructure improvements across the area in a co-ordinated way, which gives a better outcome for our residents.
Norfolk County Council was successfully shortlisted as one of 12 UK cities eligible to apply for a share of the Transforming Cities Fund (TCF). £6.1 million has already been secured for the Norwich area, and this will help deliver the vision of clean transport, a healthy environment, increased social mobility and enhanced access to employment and learning. Further funding bids are in preparation.
You can be sure infrastructure will be considered at every stage, and that the local plan inspector will require us to show there is a reasonable chance that necessary infrastructure will be provided.