Policy 1 - The Sustainable Growth Strategy



This document meets the NPPF’s primary purpose for a local plan by providing the planning strategy for the pattern and scale of development to meet growth needs in Greater Norwich from 2018 to 2038.


It identifies growth and renewal areas on greenfield and brownfield sites and limits growth in areas for long-term protection.


Policy 1 sets out the broad strategic approach which is illustrated on the key diagram. It also provides the context for subsequent more detailed strategic locational, thematic and sites policies in the plan.


Achieving sustainable development is at the heart of the planning system.  This means striving to meet social, economic and environmental needs to provide a good quality of life for existing and future generations.  The aim is to retain and enhance the distinctive qualities of Greater Norwich and create environmentally sustainable, resilient and socially inclusive communities. As required by the NPPF, policy 1 promotes sustainable development. 


The strategy takes a flexible approach in what will be a time of rapid change in how we work, travel and live owing to expected technological, economic and environmental changes.  It aims to make the most of Greater Norwich’s substantial economic growth potential to develop its leading role in the national economy and to meet housing need, whilst also protecting and enhancing the special environment of our area and promoting low carbon development.


The strategy meets national planning policy requirements, is informed by consultation feedback and is based on an extensive evidence base covering a wide variety of issues including infrastructure needs, Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA) considerations and Sustainability Appraisal (SA).


Policy 1 establishes that five-year housing land supply will be calculated across the whole of the three districts and commits the councils to reviewing the plan to comply with government requirements.


This local plan  also provides a “direction of travel” for the longer term by identifying opportunities for growth which could be taken forward to meet additional needs in the next local plan. A significant part of this long-term need is likely to be met in a future plan through the development of new settlements (see policy 7.6).


The GNLP therefore provides the strategic framework to give the clarity on where growth on Greater Norwich is sustainable ahead of the implementation of the new planning system the Government is promoting.53


53Government consultations in autumn 2020 pointed to significant reforms to the planning system, including to the form and role of local plans, and strongly suggest that additional housing growth will be needed in the next review of the plan. As set out in paragraph 4, this plan is being progressed under transitional arrangements provided by government as part of the reforms.