1.1 In accordance with Technical Advice Note (TAN) 23, the Council has a duty to undertake an Employment Land Review (ELR) to inform the evidence base in respect of the preparation of its 2nd Replacement Local Development Plan (LDP), and seeks to appoint suitably experienced consultants to carry out this work. It is envisaged that a multi-disciplinary team will be required that will include: planning, property, economic development and market analysis expertise. It is intended that an update of the Caerphilly Sites Supply and Market Appraisal 2014 will be undertaken as part of the commission, having regard to the national policy framework set out in Planning Policy Wales (PPW), TAN 23 and the associated Practice Guidance, as well as the Larger than Local Regional Employment Study 2020.
1.2 The planning system should ensure that economic growth and employment is not constrained by a shortage of land, and LDPs should support the market through the allocation of an appropriate mix of sites and a framework for the protection of existing ones. The ELRs that inform LDPs should be up-to-date and relevant to prevailing market conditions, and this evidence should demonstrate the suitability of the land supply ultimately provided for in the 2nd Replacement LDP, which will include consideration of all protected, existing sites and suitable development management policies.
1.3 The Development Plans Manual (Welsh Government, 2020) sets out guidance on how to develop an evidence base to justify the level of economic growth being planned for in a LDP, and is clear that it needs to be considered alongside housing and associated infrastructure in order to arrive at a sustainable strategy. It will therefore be necessary for the ELR to ‘tie in’ with work being undertaken involving population and household projections, and to ensure that this is interwoven into the forecasting element of the ELR. It is therefore expected that significant regard will be had to Chapter 5 of the Development Plans Manual when undertaking the ELR.
1.4 Because economic issues are generally widespread, evidence is most appropriately collected at a regional and local level. The ELR process will be expected to have regard to the Larger than Local Study completed in 2020 for the five Gwent authorities (Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Monmouthshire, Newport and Torfaen), as well as similar issues and considerations elsewhere in the Cardiff Capital Region, of which Caerphilly is part.
1.5 Although not technically forming part of the ELR, the following two points are important in terms of setting the national, regional and local policy context and will form a starting point for formulation of the LDP’s economic vision, which the ELR itself will play a crucial role in refining:
• Consider those national, regional and local economic strategies, objectives and policies that the study should have regard to;
• Review all relevant national, regional and local plans and policies, particularly the employment land policies of the adopted Caerphilly County Borough LDP.
1.6 The general scope and requirements of the study are as set out below:
• Undertake a property market assessment, including identifying where demand and opportunities exist for development, where existing employment land is no longer in demand, and establish property market profiles for offices, industry and warehousing;
• Undertake an audit of employment sites, including preparation of a quantitative site inventory, qualitative site appraisals and recommendations;
• Calculate future land requirements based on past build rates and labour demand forecasting. Alternative scenarios should be used, factoring in population and household projections, and the future land requirements identified in the Larger than Local Study should be taken into account;
• Provide policy options and recommendations, including in terms of the monitoring framework.
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