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October 2023
Early 2024 to be confirmed as the examination is ongoing

Policy 3 Environmental Protection and Enhancement

MM9 - Policy 3

Page 72

Modification

Amend Policy 3 to read:

POLICY 3 - ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AND ENHANCEMENT (underlined in the original)

The Built and Historic Environment (underlined in the original)

The development strategy of the plan and the sites proposed for development reflect the area's settlement structure of the city, towns and villages, retaining the separate identities of individual settlements.

Development proposals will be required to conserve andshould enhance the built and historic environment through:

  • beingBeing designed to create a distinct sense of place and enhance local character, taking account of local design and other guidance, undertaking a heritage impact assessment if significant impacts might arise, and providing measures such as heritage interpretation to further the understanding of local heritage issues; such as conservation area appraisals and historic landscape character assessments;
  • avoidingAvoiding harm to designated and non-designated heritage assets and historic character, unless there are overriding benefits from the development that outweigh that harm or loss and the harm has been minimised, including their setting, having regard to their level of significance in accordance with the requirements of the NPPF and relevant policies in other Development Plan Documents and Neighbourhood Plans ;
  • providingProviding a continued or new use for heritage assets whilst retaining their historic significance.;
  • Undertaking a heritage impact assessment if significant impacts to a heritage asset might arise;
  • Where relevant, heritage interpretation measures should be provided to enhance the appreciation and understanding of local heritage assets;
  • Respecting landscape character and retaining important views and features, having regard to Landscape Character Assessments and sensitive areas such as landscape settings, strategic gaps and green spaces identified in Local or Neighbourhood Plans, and to the importance of the nationally designated Broads Authority Area and its setting.

In applying the above, regard will be given to the level of importance of the heritage asset.
 

The Natural Environment (underlined in the original)

Development proposals will be required to conserve and should enhance the natural environment (including valued landscapes, biodiversity including priority habitats, networks and species, ancient trees and woodlands, geodiversity, high quality agricultural land and soils) through:

  • beingBeing designed to respect and, retain, and add to enhance, natural assets;, taking account of local design and other guidance, and undertaking landscape, biodiversity or other appropriate assessments if significant impacts might arise such as Landscape Character Assessment;
  • avoidingAvoiding harm to designated and non-designated assets of the natural environment unless there are overriding benefits from the development and the harm has been minimised., having regard to their level of significance (local, national and international) in accordance with the requirements of the NPPF and relevant policies in other Development Plan Documents and Neighbourhood Plans;
  • Undertaking a relevant assessment (such as a landscape or ecological assessment) if impacts to a natural asset might arise;
  • Provision or enhancement of green infrastructure to contribute (directly or indirectly) to the strategic green infrastructure network having regard to local green infrastructure strategies (identified indicatively in Maps 8A and 8B).

In applying the above, regard will be given to the level of importance of the natural elementasset.

In addition, development will deliver net biodiversity gain through the provision of on-site or off-site natural features, creating new or enhancing existing green infrastructure networks that have regard to and help to achieve the local green infrastructure strategies. It will need toshould be demonstrated that the gain to biodiversity is a significant enhancement (at least a 10% gain) oncompared to the existing situation.
 

All residential development will address the potential visitor pressure, caused by residents of the development, that would detrimentally impact on sites protected under the Habitats Regulations Directive through:

  • theThe payment of a contribution towards the cost of mitigation measures at the protected sites (as determined under the Norfolk Green infrastructure and Recreational Impact Avoidance and Mitigation Strategy plus an allowance for inflation); and
  • theThe provision or enhancement of adequate green infrastructure, either on the development site or nearby, to provide for the informal recreational needs of the residents as an alternative to visiting the protected sites. This will equate to a minimum of 2 hectares per 1,000 population and will reflect Natural England's Accessible Natural Greenspace Standard.

Any development that would be likely to have a significant effect on a European site, either alone or in combination with other plans or projects, will be subject to assessment under the Habitat Regulations at application stage. If it cannot be ascertained that there would be no adverse effects on site integrity the application will be refused unless it passes the tests set out in Regulation 62, and any necessary compensatory measures will need to be secured.

Within the catchments of the River Wensum Special Area of Conservation (SAC), The Broads SAC and the Broadland Ramsar:

  • Residential development that results in an increase in the level of overnight stays; and
  • Non-residential development that
  • by virtue of its scale and type may draw people from outside the catchments of the SACs;
  • and/or may generate unusual quantities of surface water;
  • and/or, by virtue of the processes undertaken, may contain unusual pollutants within surface water run-off;

must provide evidence to enable the Local Planning Authority to conclude through a Habitats Regulations Assessment that the proposal will not adversely affect the integrity of sites in an unfavourable condition.

Reasons

To ensure the plan is effective, justified and consistent with national policy.