Local Development Plan Emerging Strategy Consultation (read-only)

Ended on the 30th May 2014
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9. Example 4 – Regeneration and Landscape Led

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Figure 9.1

Regeneration and Landscape Led (Distribution of Growth)

Summary of Spatial Implications

9.1 The Regeneration and Landscape Led approach promotes development which balances meeting regeneration objectives and accommodating growth in locations considered to have lesser impact on environmental and landscape considerations. Under this example the location of new development is split between selected sites within the urban area together with urban extensions to the east of Harlow and to the south west into Epping Forest District. If 15,000 dwellings are needed then additional urban extension to the west of Harlow could be provided.

Key Features of the Strategy

9.2 This example would see substantial investment and change directed to the east and southwest of Harlow. The strategy would be focused on improving the existing fabric of the town and creating a number of opportunity areas within Harlow. The renaissance of the town centre (and adjoining areas) will be placed at the heart of the strategy. The Town Centre will be a key growth location and a major provider of employment, homes, services and facilities. This example also looks to focus additional development in and around Harlow’s Neighbourhood Centres and Hatches to facilitate the regeneration of these locations. Higher density development would also be pursued in these locations to inject increased vitality.

9.3 This option would also require the reallocation of some green wedges and open spaces close to identified priority areas in Harlow and would involve the reconfiguration of some employment land to support the revitalisation of locations within Harlow. Growth would also be provided in lesser sensitive locations to the east of the existing town making the most of highways improvements planned for this area.

9.4 The sites/areas identified for this option are shown below: (note: site numbers are references and relate to appendix 1 on page 71)

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Figure 9.4

Regeneration and Landscape Led (Internal Sites & Potential External Growth Locations)

9.5 This pattern of growth would involve approximately 8,800 dwellings being provided within Harlow. This option looks to accommodate more development within the existing urban area of Harlow through the selective use of open spaces. Green Belt land within Harlow would also be required to accommodate development.

Figure 9.5

Distribution of Development in and around Harlow (Example 4)

9.6 To deliver the full amount of development in accordance with this approach some planned growth within the adjoining district of Epping Forest District Council would be required. The locations included in this example are listed in Appendix 1.

How would this option be delivered?

9.7 The assessment identified a number of locations within Harlow where development could deliver local regeneration priorities for the town. This includes locations to the southwest of Harlow. Development would also be provided to the east (beyond Newhall up to the M11) to utilise landscape considerations and planned highways improvements.

9.8 Sites within Harlow could be delivered through area masterplans and a continuation of the Priority Areas for Regeneration approach. This could include masterplans for selected Neighbourhood Centres and Hatches. The redevelopment of the Town Centre could be promoted through an Area Action Plan. Urban extensions to Harlow could be delivered through joint Area Action Plans (AAPs), working with Epping Forest District Council.

Infrastructure Planning

9.9 An update of the Stage 1 baseline Harlow Infrastructure Study is currently being undertaken. This will include an assessment of the infrastructure required to ensure it can be satisfactory accommodated within the plan period. This assessment incudes social, physical and green infrastructure. The assessments will test emerging patterns of growth so that a preferred approach can be identified.

Implications for Core Priorities and Places

9.10 The Harlow Spatial Options Study (Stages 1-3) has assessed the implications that this option would have for both the Core Priorities and for different locations across Harlow.

Strengths and Benefits

  • Helps to deliver local regeneration priorities across the town.
  • Provides a framework for the development and regeneration of existing centres in Harlow to ensure they remain viable in the long term.
  • Facilitates the implementation of new Junction 7a on the M11.
  • Prepares place shaping and local improvement strategies to benefit existing communities.
  • Utilises lesser quality landscape to the east of Newhall up to the M11.
  • Enhances the role of existing centres in Harlow (Town Centre, Neighbourhood Centre and Hatches) to ensure they remain viable in the long term.
  • Conforms to the vision and core priorities of the Local Plan.
  • Promotes the creation of substantial new neighbourhoods to the east of the existing town which could provide its own schools and health care.
  • Utilises planned highways investment in the east of Harlow.


  • Development to southwest and east requires substantial and complex infrastructure provision.
  • Focusing growth within the existing built up area, if not managed correctly, could increase congestion and pressure on existing services such as schools and health care.
  • Requires significant passenger transportation investment in the south west and in the east of Harlow.
  • The viability of some small sites in Harlow may pose a risk to the delivery of the strategy and impact the delivery of affordable homes and other infrastructure requirements.
  • Requires the development of some Green Wedges and exiting open spaces to implement the strategy.
  • Potential for increased recreational use at Harlow Woods SSSI and Latton Common (Local Wildlife Site).

9.11 Further assessment of this example can be found in the Strategic Environmental Assessment/Sustainability Appraisal which has been published alongside this document.

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