A new design guide created by Tibbalds Planning and Urban Design in partnership with Runnymede Borough Council that will help shape future development in communities across the borough has this week been adopted and put into use.
The new Supplementary Planning Document is designed to support the borough’s Local Plan and ensure everyone involved in planning applications in the borough – from members and officers to applicants and local stakeholders – is clear about the Council’s expectations for high quality design in new developments, and how to deliver high quality design in different scales and types of proposals.
The guidance sets out four overarching standards for the area: strengthening Runnymede’s character; making people-friendly places; placemaking and creating character; and achieving sustainable design. Underneath them sit 21 further design standards grouped around four principles: analysing site and context; developing a design concept; site layout and masterplanning, and detailed design.
Runnymede’s communities were involved from the outset, engaging with both the Local Plan process and the development of this guidance.
Councillor Myles Willingale, Chairman of the Planning Committee said: “I am delighted to see the adoption of the Runnymede Design SPD which now forms a vital element of the Council’s toolkit as it assesses development proposals which are coming forward in the borough following the adoption of the Runnymede 2030 Local Plan.
“Runnymede is a beautiful borough which it is everyone’s joint duty to protect and, where possible, enhance. I look forward to this document flying the flag for good design, so strengthening our resolve to enhance the special characteristics of Runnymede and leaving us better able to resist poorly designed schemes.”
Hilary Satchwell, Director at Tibbalds Planning and Urban Design, said: “Runnymede is a beautiful place to live, work and visit but the qualities that make it so attractive are placing the area under significant pressures for development in the future.
“7,507 homes are needed between 2015 and 2030, and with much of the borough covered by Green Belt, existing urban areas and town centres are likely to see most of the new development. Quality needs to be high, and Runnymede’s intrinsic characteristics and residents’ quality of life need to be maintained.
“Members and officers therefore need a clear means of assessing whether the development they are considering constitutes good design and meets the Council’s vision; developers need clarity, and local communities need a sense of what to expect from development within their locality.”
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