What are the environmental requirements of land earmarked for development?
By Kay Hinchsliffe, Principal Ecologist
Many landowners are looking to sell off sections of their farming land for housing development. This gives a much-needed cash injection and frees up sites to tackle the housing crisis. However, the land must achieve a certain environmental standard before a developer can start building.
Principal Ecologist, Kay Hinchsliffe discusses the environmental requirements for land and properties that are earmarked for development and how Adler and Allan can help yours reach that standard, making it much more attractive to Developers while reducing costs to maximise revenues.
While precise requirements vary depending on region, obtaining Outline Planning Consent for change of use of land for housing development prior to sale will significantly increase its value and saleability.
An essential component is being able to prove that the estate meets a satisfactory environmental threshold, meaning it is uncontaminated and clear of any spill damage that would present risk to future residents prior to obtaining planning consent.
In addition, they must demonstrate that all environmental risks have been anticipated and that mitigation plans are in place to protect especially vulnerable features, such as watercourses, hedgerows or specific protected species of flora and fauna.
Depending on the site’s environmental and historical features, regulatory bodies, such as the Environment Agency might have to be consulted, too as well as meeting EU demands.
An application must still be made that satisfies statutory environmental protection standards and the landowner must provide any supporting information this exercise requires.
The next step is to apply for full detailed planning permission where environmental, archaeological and historical features and water courses, plus any protected designations statuses will be re-examined in great detail.
It is therefore vital that applicants can provide a robust environmental audit and it is a good idea to organise one every few years. They prove that you have managed procedures for containing and controlling spill incidents, minimising adverse environmental effects and limiting danger to people, property and businesses.
Providing the local Council with a full environmental audit will make for a much speedier planning process at both outline and full application stage, thereby saving the applicant both time and money.
To make this process as smooth as possible we provide land and asset environmental surveys to evaluate any risk to the ecology of the site proposed for either development or sale.