Harlow Town Centre Area Action Plan - Issues and Options Consultation

Ended on the 10th August 2018
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POLICY THEMES

THEME 1: STRATEGIC GROWTH


Background

Harlow Town Centre benefits from a strategic location with a large catchment and significant investments are already planned including the Harvey Centre upgrade which could have a wider catalytic impact. The Town Centre has a distinctive character and an impressive collection of public art and amenities which could be better celebrated. Clear opportunities exist to enhance the public realm and to capitalise on the latent development potential of the area.

Unfortunately, the Town Centre suffers from a mismatch in retail floorspace. Commercial advice set out in Harlow Town Centre Market Analysis Report (2017) indicates that there is an excessive provision of retail compounded by a lack of good quality floorspace, a lack of high end operators and high vacancy rates. The area also suffers from a limited evening economy offer and poor accessibility. The absence of a department store and the strong performance of competing centres in the region is a potential constraint to a step change in the strategic performance of the Town Centre.

Harlow's existing urban area is rectangular in form, with the long axis running west-to-east parallel to the river valley. The Town Centre is relatively close to the northern edge of the settlement. However, the development of garden villages at Gilston and elsewhere to the north and south of the town will result in a settlement that is much more evenly distributed around the central core.

The Town Centre's centre of gravity has moved south since the original 1952 masterplan, which was focused on the Market Square at the northern end of the Town Centre. The key attractors are now the more modern Harvey Centre to the south-west, The Water Gardens Shopping Centre to the south, and the Harlow Leisurezone to the south-east. The traditional centres – Market Square, West Gate and Broad Walk – all lie away from these locations, and do not correspond to any significant walking routes from key arrival points, the most notable being the bus station and car park at Terminus Street, which runs parallel to Broad Walk.

Through the Garden Town proposals and the arrival of Public Health England, there is a genuine prospect that the Town Centre could harness the benefits of major residential growth in the immediate vicinity of Harlow (16,100 new homes with a further 7,000 at Gilston).

Emerging policy context

Policies in chapter 12 of the 2006 Local Plan seek to sustain and enhance performance, diversity and quality of uses in the Town Centre using tools such as frontage designations to embed the sequential approach.

The Garden Town proposals set out an agenda for significant growth in the Harlow and neighbouring authorities of up to 16,100 new homes.

Policies in the Draft Local Development Plan (2017) update the existing policy approach in relation to the sequential approach, frontage guidance, sub-division, evening and night time economy, improvements in the sustainability of travel. Broader policies are set out in relation to public art, community and sports facilities and heritage assets.

What you've told us

There is a positive attitude towards development in Harlow, and an optimism about the role that wider growth (Public Health England, Enterprise Zone, Harlow and Gilston Garden Town proposals) will play in strengthening the Town Centre and giving momentum to transport initiatives.



There is a desire to be as positive as possible about development, noting that constraints have sometimes been difficult to overcome in the past.

For some this is balanced against a concern about losing the positive characteristics of the original Gibberd masterplan and other assets such as public art.

Issue

What is the overall strategy for growth in Harlow Town Centre? How will this influence the approach to individual opportunity areas and planning policies for the Town Centre?

Options

Option 1.1 – Baseline scenario

Do nothing over and above the existing pipeline (the Harvey Centre works including a cinema and reconfiguration of the former Marks and Spencer unit) and committed residential investments such as Terminus House and the Circle Housing site.

Option 1.2 – Medium intervention scenario Opportunities exist to regenerate the Market and Stone Cross area and substantially enhance the environmental quality of the Town Centre, focusing on the Broad Walk between the Market area and The Water Gardens to the south.

Option 1.3 – High intervention scenario Alongside medium and longer-term opportunities to bring forward other sites for Town Centre uses and residential growth, this scenario would establish a critical mass to consolidate the performance of the Town Centre within and beyond the plan period in combination with wider proposals for the strategic growth of Harlow.


Direction of Travel

It is important to highlight that the options should be interpreted as incremental phases rather than mutually exclusive, separate scenarios. In this context, individual options form a stepping stone towards a high intervention scenario (option 1.3).

The implications of this distinction are important from a policy perspective. Although an individual scenario might be "preferred" or considered more realistic and deliverable for the purposes of the plan period, it is important that the AAP encourages a long-term vision for the Town Centre, and seeks to future-proof transformative interventions which would contribute to these aspirations.

The scale of growth envisaged in the District and neighbouring authorities reflect the need for a proactive approach in planning for growth.

It is challenging to predict how the trajectory of growth might alter in terms of timing or the sequencing of development interventions in the wider area.

In that context, it is recommended that a flexible policy position is established which encourages a long-term vision whilst allowing incremental growth and interventions in phases. In the short-term, the policy would encourage sensitive management of proposals, promoting early investment and shaping development which could unlock, rather than preclude a longer-term vision.

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives. The specific implications of the three scenarios are considered in more detail in section 6B.


THEME 2: MOVEMENT


Background

The most prominent gateways into the Town Centre in Harlow lie to the east, south and west – at the Bus Station, The Water Gardens Shopping Centre and College Square respectively.

Harlow Town Centre lacks a strong northern gateway, despite this being the arrival point from the railway station and the A414 road. Responding to the analysis of buildings' heritage value, a new northern gateway could be achieved by the demolition of Stone Cross Hall, The Rows and 2 East Gate, which have all been rated as offering poor heritage value. This could allow Bird Cage Walk to be improved as a northern gateway into the Town Centre, perhaps merging the functions of the adjacent North Gate which acts as a service yard and informal kiss-and-ride.

The original street grid appears to have deliberately avoided any internal streets corresponding with external gateways, however this exacerbates the insular feeling of the Town Centre.

As a response to changing travel patterns, cycling and walking routes into and within the Town Centre should be improved to provide better linkages, encourage more sustainable methods of transport and to promote healthy lifestyles. This will be essential for the regeneration of the Town Centre, alongside considering the impact of air pollution caused by the possible re-introduction of vehicular traffic to the Town Centre.

The following background information sets out Phil Jones Associates' baseline analysis of transport and streets in and around Harlow Town Centre and informs the emerging principles of the Town Centre Area Action Plan (AAP).


Road hierarchy

Harlow is a planned New Town, so has a very clearly defined road hierarchy. Streets in the Town Centre are unambiguous in their function, as either "movement streets" or "activity streets". Movement streets consist of three sub- categories of street:

  • The peripheral "collar road" – Velizy Avenue, Third Avenue, Haydens Road, Fourth Avenue
  • Internal distributor roads – Kitson Way, Post Office Road, South Gate, West Gate
  • Pedestrian walkways and cycle tracks

"Activity streets" are generally the original pedestrianised precincts from the 1952 masterplan. The Town Centre was originally laid out with these precincts forming a rectangle, but this has since been broken by the Harvey Centre on the western side. The principal shopping streets remaining from the original layout are Broad Walk and East Gate, which converge on the Market Square. There are secondary pedestrianised shopping streets, such as Stone Cross and Post Office Walk. These are more intimate than the main precinct streets, and more like arcades in their scale.

The centre of gravity of the Town Centre has shifted to the south and away from the Market Square with the more recent additions of the Water Gardens Retail Park and the Leisurezone. These more modern developments are focused on arrival by the private car, and as such are oriented to face car parking areas that take access off the perimeter roads.

There are a handful of locations where active frontage and movement co-exist, but otherwise the Town Centre is characterised by sudden changes in environment, emphasised by the collar effect of the four roads that surround it. Water Gardens is relatively well integrated with the original street layout, with a pedestrian promenade linking it to the southern end of Broad Walk. However, this connection is disjointed, with a dog-leg along a pedestrianised street with little or no active frontage. The Leisurezone is outside the collar road, with an indirect walking route to and from the rest of the Town Centre.


Despite these recent additions, the Town Centre is inward facing: there is little active frontage along any of the major approaches to the Town Centre, and there are few natural gateways. One natural gateway can be found at College Square, outside the Harlow Playhouse Theatre and St Paul's Church in the western fringes of the Town Centre. However, the striking modernist architecture of the latter is well set back from Haydens Road, with Occasio House partially blocking sightlines.



College Square is one of the few places in Harlow where active frontage and movement co-exist, with the taxi turning circle outside the Theatre providing a focus for activity as well as a sense of place, partially framed by the modernist Playhouse building and the blank, brutalist wall of the Harvey Centre.

At the opposite side of the Town Centre, the intersection of East Gate, Post Office Road and Terminus Road acts as an eastern gateway, with shops fronting onto the junction and overlooking the bus station. This location provides a gradual step down in movement function as you leave the eastern collar road, Velizy Avenue, with an increasing sense of place as you go west down East Gate.

In quite a contrast to East Gate, North Gate provides a very sudden transition from the northern collar road. North Gate serves primary as a rear service road, but also provides a walking link into the northern part of the Town Centre. It is well-used for informal "kiss and ride", as one of the closest places to drive into the Town Centre to drop off or pick up passengers. Despite this, it is not "legibly" part of the Town Centre, in that it doesn't feel like an obvious route. This is probably because the adjacent arcade street, Bird Cage Walk, is intended to the primary pedestrian route into the Town Centre from the north, although this is less convenient for "kiss-and-ride".

In addition to the above examples, there is also a small amount of residential land use in the Town Centre, at Dads Wood in the south west.


College Square (Playhouse Square)

St. Pauls Church, College Square

East Gate, looking into the Town Centre with the bus station to the left



Considering all these example street types, it is possible to classify the entire Town Centre into streets hierarchy, following the "Link & Place" method. We have followed Transport for London's 3x3 methodology, however we have modified it to reflect the local typology of Harlow. "Place" function increases from left to right, and "movement" function increases from bottom to top.


Core roads

  • Velizy Avenue
  • Third Avenue
  • Haydens Road
  • Fourth Avenue

Secondary hubs / high roads

  • Terminus Street
  • Playhouse Square
  • West Gate (south east corner)

Principal hubs / high roads

  • None

Connecting roads

  • Kitson Way
  • South Gate
  • Post Office Road
  • North Gate
  • Cross Street
  • Hamstel Road
  • Hodlings Road
  • NCN 1 cycle track

Secondary high streets

  • Bird Cage Walk
  • Post Office Walk

High streets

  • Broad Walk
  • East Gate
  • Water Gardens

Local streets

  • Dads Wood (residential)
  • Wych Elm (industrial)

Secondary town squares

  • West Square

Principal town Squares

  • Market Square
  • Civic Square / Water Gardens

Link & Place grid of Harlow Town Centre street types, with examples.


Bird Cage Walk, parallel to North Gate

Looking into the Town Centre pedestrianised area from North Gate


It should be noted from the Link & Place analysis that the traditional heart of the Town Centre, Market Square, does not function as a focal point. While it is situated on a number of traditional walking routes, the relocation of the Town Centre's centre of gravity has resulted in a lower footfall in the Market Square than when it was the hub of the original rectangle of pedestrianised precincts in the original 1952 masterplan. While there are a few focal points identified through this above method, it should be noted that these are not significant areas of footfall, however this analysis has recognised that there is still some movement activity in these places as natural gateways to the Town Centre, although most movement activity is concentrated on the collar roads.

Bus network

The bus network in Harlow is focused on Harlow Bus Station, found within the study area. The network takes a hub and spoke form, the bus station forms the hub from which the spokes radiate.

A plot displaying the routing of frequent and regular bus services in Harlow centre is shown on the diagram opposite.

Feedback has suggested the Town Centre is currently poorly connected to the Edinburgh Retail Park by bus, a particular issue with the recent conversions of office buildings to residential here. Greater demand will come from the growth areas and, in particular, the new site for the proposed Health Campus accommodating the relocated Princess Alexandra Hospital.




Illustration of Harlow Town Centre street types on a base map


The table opposite contains a summary of the bus routes that serve the bus station.

Service

Route

Mon – Fri Frequency

Saturday Frequency

Sunday Frequency

1

Sumners – Central Harlow

3 per hour

3 per hour

Hourly

Central Harlow ‐ Sumners

3 per hour

3 per hour

Hourly

2

(Circular)

Harlow – Staple Tye

4 per hour

4 per hour

Hourly

3

(Circular)

Harlow – Little Parndon

4 per hour

4 per hour

No service

4

Latton Bush – Central Harlow

4 per hour

4 per hour

Hourly

Central Harlow –Latton Bush

4 per hour

4 per hour

Hourly

5

Harlow – Sumners Farm

2 per hour

2 per hour

No service

Sumners Farm –Harlow

2 per hour

2 per hour

No service

6

(Circular)

Harlow – Little Parndon

2 per hour

2 per hour

Hourly

8

Old Harlow – Harlow

2 per hour

2 per hour

Hourly

Harlow – Old Harlow

2 per hour

2 per hour

Hourly

9/9A

Potter Street – Central Harlow

3 per hour

3 per hour

No service

Central Harlow – Potter Street

3 per hour

3 per hour

No service

10

(Circular)

Church Langley – Central Harlow

3 per hour

3 per hour

Hourly

14

Pinnacles – Harlow Town Centre

3 per hour

3 per hour

No service

Harlow Town Centre – Pinnacles

3 per hour

3 per hour

No service

59

Chelmsford – Harlow

Hourly

Hourly

Every 2 hours

Chelmsford – Harlow

Hourly

Hourly

Every 2 hours

86

(Circular)

Harlow – Waltham Cross

Hourly

Every 2 hours

No Service

87

Harlow – Epping

3 per hour

Hourly

No service

Epping – Harlow

3 per hour

Hourly

No service

347

Hatfield Broad Oak ‐

Harlow

3 daily

(Tuesday and Thursday)

Once daily

No service

Harlow – Hatfield Broad Oak

3 daily

(Tuesday and Thursday)

Once daily

No service

381

Harlow – Coopersale

Every 2 hours

4 daily

No service

Coopersale – Harlow

Every 2 hours

4 daily

No service

410

Waltham Cross – Harlow

2 per hour

Hourly

No service

Harlow – Waltham Cross

2 per hour

Hourly

No service

418/418B

Loughton Station – Harlow

Every 2 hours

Every 2 hours

Every 2 hours

Harlow – Loughton Station

Every 2 hours

Every 2 hours

Every 2 hours

419

Ongar – Harlow

2 per hour

No service

2 per hour

Harlow – Ongar

2 per hour

No service

2 per hour

420

Ongar – Harlow

2 per hour

2 per hour

No service

Harlow – Ongar

2 per hour

2 per hour

No service

424

Hertford – Harlow

2 per hour

No service

No service

Table 1: Summary of bus services

The following timetabling information was valid until 28/11/2017.

There are a number of frequent routes serving the bus station, with several routes running up to every 15 minutes. The urban bus routes (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9/91, and 14) all have a frequency no lower than every 30 minutes. However, number 14 only operates at peak hours. A selection of routes serving the bus station only operate on certain days of the week, these are less frequent.

Bus corridors



Table 2: Summary of bus services


Rail network

Harlow is served by two railway stations: Harlow Town, and Harlow Mill. Harlow Town station is found around 1km to the north of the Town Centre; whilst Harlow Mill station is around 750m to the north of Old Harlow, approximately 2.8km east of the study area.

Service

Route

Mon – Fri Frequency

Saturday Frequency

Sunday Frequency


Harlow – Hertford

2 per hour

No service

No service

501

Ongar – Harlow

No service

No service

Every 2 hours

Harlow – Ongar

No service

No service

Every 2 hours

505

Chingford – Harlow

No service

Every 2 hours

No service

Harlow – Chingford

No service

Every 2 hours

No service

508

Stansted Airport – Harlow

2 per hour

2 per hour

No service

Harlow – Stansted Airport

2 per hour

2 per hour

No service

509

Stansted Airport – Harlow

2 per hour

2 per hour

No service

Harlow – Stansted Airport

2 per hour

2 per hour

No service

510

Stansted Airport ‐

Harlow

2 per hour

2 per hour

2 per hour

Harlow – Stansted Airport

2 per hour

2 per hour

2 per hour

575

Romford – Harlow

Once daily

No service

No service

Harlow – Romford

Once daily

No service

No service

724

Harlow – Heathrow Airport

2 per hour

2 per hour

Hourly

Heathrow Airport – Harlow

2 per hour

2 per hour

Hourly

HSB1

Central Harlow – Old Harlow

Every 2 hours (not Tuesday and Thursday)

Every 2 hours

No service

Old Harlow – Central Harlow

Every 2 hours (not Tuesday and Thursday)

Every 2 hours

No service

LCB1

Kingsmoor ‐ Old Harlow

Hourly (between 9 and

No service

No service



2)



Old Harlow – Kingsmoor

Hourly (between 9 and 2)

No service

No service

SB12

Toot Hill – Harlow

Once on Wednesday and Friday

No service

No service

Harlow – Toot Hill

Once on Wednesday and Friday

No service

No service

ZIP 1

(Circular)

Harlow ‐ Kingsmoor

3 per hour

3 per hour

No service

Harlow Town has regular direct services to: London Liverpool Street, Bishops Stortford, Stansted Airport, Cambridge North and Stratford.

Harlow Town is within walking distance of the Town Centre; however, the route is severed by a number of main roads. A number of bus services provide access to the station during peak periods, and route 10 offers access outside of peak times. In addition, 52 bicycle parking spaces are available at the station.

The local train operator, Abellio, is part of the Bike- and-Go scheme, but currently does not offer Bike-and-Go bikes at either of the Harlow stations. These are available further up and down the line at Broxbourne and Bishops Stortford, and at other Essex stations.



Car parking

The following section provides an overview of car parking in the Town Centre, including the location, supply, pricing and quality.

A summary of car parks within the study area is provided in Table 3. In addition to this, a number of alternative car parks are available outside of the study area, but still in walking distance to the Town Centre.

The distribution of the car parks across the study area is shown overleaf.

Residential standards

An analysis of existing car ownership has been undertaken by Phil Jones Associates in the three wards contiguous with the town centre to understand local demand for car parking. This is the approach set out in the DCLG Residential Car Parking Research paper (2007)1


1 http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20070604085735/ http://www.communities.gov.uk/index.asp?id=1510293


This method allows parking standards to be considered on local context, i.e. assuming that car ownership of new residents will be similar to those who currently live near the town centre. This is a more informed approach than a blanket district-wide allocation, that may over- provide parking in areas where car-free living may be more practicable, or under-provides it in areas where car ownership is more essential.

The DCLG paper points out that wholly allocated parking can lead to a mismatch between supply and demand, as there is always a proportion of households who do not own a car or own fewer cars than the spaces they have been allocated. Those unused parking spaces that are not publicly-available cannot be used by households whose car ownership exceeds their available allocation. In such a scenario, a developer has paid for parking space that goes unused, while residents suffer parking congestion elsewhere in the same site presenting problems such as blocked footways or access difficulties for emergency services.


Name

Operator

Spaces

Max Stay

Day Rate (Peak)

Day Rate (Off Peak)

Hourly

Harvey Shopping Centre

The Harvey Centre

720

£10

£10 (£0.50p on Sunday)

£1.20

Post Office Road

Harlow District Council

139

£7.75

£7.75

£1.25

Linkway

Luminus Group



£6

£6

£1

Terminus Street

UPARK Holdings Ltd.

600

£5

£5

£2

The Water Gardens

The Water Gardens

Shopping Centre

1200

£10

£10 (£0.50p on

Sunday)

Min stay 2 hrs:

£0.90

Wych Elm

Harlow District Council

120

£7.75

£7.75

Min stay 2 hrs:

£1.65

Leisurezone Car Park

Leiurezone

550

4 hours

£2.50 (up to four hours)

Table 3: Car park summary



Public car parks



The DCLG method therefore allows for parking demand to be calculated and an appropriate allocation derived on the basis of a mixture of allocated and unallocated spaces, or one or the other. The most space-efficient approach is generally for all parking to be unallocated – i.e. wholly on-street or in shared parking courts – as this allows the capacity to be optimised for existing car ownership levels which are rarely a whole integer of parking spaces per household. This is essentially what happens in terraced streets built before 1920 that would not have been laid out with any concept of personal car ownership, but happen to be largely suitable for providing for residential parking where extraneous car parking demand can be removed.

However, there may be an advantage in dwellings having at least one space allocated for purposes of marketing and convenience. Therefore, our approach has followed the DCLG method for calculating parking provision based on a mixed allocation – i.e. one or more spaces allocated per dwelling, with the remaining spaces unallocated. As the highest car ownership for any type of dwelling in the three contiguous wards is 1.9, including TEMPRO growth to 2020, we have assumed an allocation of 1 space per dwelling as the starting point in the calculations, rather than the 2 allocated that it is also possible to calculate in the DCLG method. The raw data and first pass of calculations is set out in the table below.

Dwellings of 1-2 and 3-4 beds have been merged in the above table in the interests of simplicity, with the data for the higher size of dwelling used for the respective type of dwelling. However, despite this simplification, the parking allocation is difficult to understand so further calculation is required to simply it so that a parking standard can be more easily applied by a developer. First of all, these ratios are rounded up to the nearest quarter to provide a degree of uniformity. As the working assumption has been to provide 1 space per dwelling, the calculation is broken down into "allocated" and "unallocated" so the total development-wide allocation can be understood. The 2-space allocation calculation is not expanded, but is retained in the working below for comparison.



CENSUS DATA

(2011) + TEMPRO GROWTH

2 ALLOCATED

1 ALLOCATED

0 ALLOCATED


1-2

bed

3-4

bed

5+

bed

1-2

bed

3-4

bed

5+

bed

1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+ bed

1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+ bed

House - owned/

mortgaged

1.4

1.6

1.9

2.3

2.3

2.4

1.7

1.9

2.1

1.4

1.6

1.9

House - rented/shared

1.0

1.2

1.1

2.2

2.3

2.2

1.4

1.6

1.5

1.0

1.2

1.1

Flat - owned/

mortgaged

1.4

1.4

1.5

2.3

2.2

2.2

1.7

1.2

1.2

1.4

1.4

1.5

Flat - rented/shared

1.0

1.1

0.7

2.2

2.2

2.0

1.4

1.5

1.2

1.0

1.1

0.5

Table 4: showing raw data from DCLG-method calculations and source data



In Table 5 below, the grey highlighted cells show a counter-intuitive result where a larger size of development has a lower parking requirement. This discrepancy maybe explained by 5 bed houses likely being a family home with several non-driving children resident, whereas a 3-4 bed house may be shared by professionals who all own cars. These anomalous allocations are therefore corrected upwards to match their adjacent category.

The allocated spaces for 5+ bed owned/ mortgaged houses, in the solid box, has been corrected down to 1 from 2 so there is some commonality with the same dwelling type in the rented/shared sector, and to make the allocation consistent across all dwelling types. The "unmet" demand is provided in the unallocated provision instead. Given the Town Centre intensification is unlikely to be delivering many 5+ bedroom houses, the effect of the above simplification is not considered to be significant.

The table is then re-cast with these further simplifications, below, with the corrected cells highlighted (see Table 6).



2+ SPACES

ALLOCATED

MIXED ALLOCATION

ALL SPACES

UNALLOCATED

Allocated Spaces

Unallocated Spaces

1-2

bed

3-4

bed

5+

bed

1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+

bed

1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+

bed

1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+ bed

House - owned/

mortgaged

2.5

2.5

2.5

1

1

1

0.75

1

1.25

1.5

1.75

2

House - rented/shared

2.25

2.5

2.25

1

1

1

0.5

0.75

0.5

1

1.25

1.25

Flat - owned/

mortgaged

2.5

2.25

2.25

1

1

1

0.75

0.25

0.25

1.5

1.5

1.5

Flat - rented/shared

2.25

2.25

2

1

1

1

0.5

0.5

0.25

1

1.25

0.5

Table 5: showing DCLG-method calculations rounded to nearest 0.5


2+ SPACES

ALLOCATED

MIXED ALLOCATION

ALL SPACES

UNALLOCATED

Allocated Spaces

Unallocated Spaces

1-2

bed

3-4

bed

5+

bed

1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+

bed

1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+

bed

1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+ bed

House - owned/

mortgaged

2.5

2.5

2.5

1

1

1

0.75

1

1.25

1.5

1.75

2

House - rented/shared

2.25

2.5

2.5

1

1

1

0.5

0.75

0.75

1

1.25

1.25

Flat - owned/

mortgaged

2.5

2.5

2.5

1

1

1

0.75

0.75

0.75

1.5

1.5

1.5

Flat - rented/shared

2.25

2.25

2.25

1

1

1

0.5

0.5

0.5

1

1.25

1.25

Table 6: showing DCLG-method with counter-intuitive results merged with neighbours



Now that simplification and correction has resulted in greater commonality, the allocation ratios can be simplified into something that can be easily communicated in an AAP or other policy document (see Table 7). The total parking allocation for the development could be calculated by addition the number of allocated spaces to the number of unallocated spaces for each dwelling type.

Walking and cycling

This section sets out current infrastructure provision and issues for cycling and walking into Harlow Town Centre from the surrounding districts. Harlow is fortunate that dedicated space for walking and cycling was provided from the outset as an integral part of the design of the new town. This means that unlike many existing towns, providing sufficient space within the highway is generally not a constraint to walking and cycling. Footways and cycle tracks are of generous dimensions and adequate to serve the current levels of demand.

Although every effort was made to blend the new town into the existing landscape, from the early days of Harlow, there have been some concerns about the scale of development and the street scene, which in themselves may be off-putting to walking and cycling. There is a combination of high density, low rise residential terraces and maisonettes set into neighbourhood blocks which are divided by major distributor roads and wedges of green space. There is little variation in the height or style of buildings and many don't have front gardens, so the streets have little of interest to the pedestrian, and the dedicated footways and cycle paths tend to go around the back of buildings and gardens, with no 'active frontage' whatsoever. Gordon Cullen writing in the Architectural Review in 1951 said:

"It is as though the drive to the country has been undertaken by people all studiously avoiding each other and pretending that they are alone. The result is a paradox, the paradox of concentrated isolation, the direct antithesis of 'towniness', which results from the social impulse…[The] results are deplorable – foot- sore housewives, cycle-weary workers, never- ending characterless streets, the depressing feeling of being a provincial or suburbanite in an environment that doesn't belong to a town or country…"

This study looks at access to the Town Centre, which is surrounded by a ring road comprising Haydens Road (west side), Fourth Avenue (north side), Velizy Avenue/Central Avenue (east side) and Third Avenue (south side).

An integral part of the overall design of the town was to retain green wedges of undeveloped countryside, one of which runs along the southern edge of Third Avenue, so this study concentrates primarily on access from the north, west and east.



Allocated Spaces

Unallocated Spaces


1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+ bed

1-2 bed

3-4 bed

5+ bed

House - owned/mortgaged

1

0.75

1

1.25

House - rented/shared

1

0.5

0.75

Flat - owned/mortgaged

1

0.75

Flat - rented/shared

1

0.5

Table 7: Final table - evidence based approach to parking allocations for review.



There are two primary issues for walking and cycling. One is crossing the ring road, and the second is passing through the edge of the Town Centre which is typified by large blocks of multi-storey car parks and the service yards for large retail premises. The combination of the busy road crossing and a lack of attractive routes through the edge of town acts as a both a physical and mental barrier to walking and cycling between the Town Centre and neighbouring residential areas. The pedestrian network within the centre is a reasonably coherent series of public squares linked by pedestrianised streets. Cycling is prohibited in the pedestrianised Town Centre although cycle parking is provided.

Existing cycle facilities

Cycle access across the ring road is provided by one subway on each side of the town:

  • Linking Sharpe Croft to College Gate on the west side,
  • Linking Hodlings Road/Rectory Wood area to Post Office Road on the north side;
  • Linking the Hides to Post Office Road on the east side, and,
  •  Linking areas south of Second and Third Avenue up into South Gate from the south- east corner of the town beneath Third Avenue.
  • A link between Harlow College and the Sports Centre to the north of second avenue.

There is no way to cycle from west to east across the Town Centre. It is possible to cycle east to west via Post Office Street, Kitson Way and West Gate. Other movements are described below.

Cycling is not permitted in the pedestrianised central streets and squares.


Existing cycle provision in and around Harlow Town Centre



North to South link – west side of town: Outside the Town Centre a cycle track runs along the west side of Haydens Road, connecting to Fourth Avenue and Third Avenue.

North to South link – east side of town: A north-south link is provided from Post Office St through Terminus St, linking to South Gate including a cycle-contraflow through the bus station. This route passes beneath Third Avenue where it links to cycle tracks towards the south east.

West to East link – north side of town: A cycle track runs along the northern side of Fourth Avenue and then across Hamstel Road to the rear of industrial area and the fire station, crossing Hodings Road at grade and then over a bridge above Sainsburys car park, under Allende Avenue and then along the northern side of First Avenue.

West to East link – south side of town. A cycle track runs along the south side of Third Avenue, with links to South Gate and Haydens Road.

Existing pedestrian infrastructure

All of the cycle routes crossing the outer ring road as subways as described above are available to pedestrians. In addition to this there are surface level signalised crossings at:

  • Haydens Road mid-way between West Gate and College Gate
  • Fourth Avenue immediately west of North Gate.
  • Central Avenue opposite Harlow College.

There are also some uncontrolled crossings (dropped kerbs and tactile paving) at the junction of Fourth Avenue/Haydens Road; at the junction of Haydens Road and Third Avenue (linking the footway along north side of Third Avenue); and across Allende Avenue (linking footway along north side of First Avenue).


Existing pedestrian accesses into Harlow Town Centre



Zebra crossings are provided where the subway exits meet Post Office Road, and where the path from the signalled crossing crosses Kitson Way.

Issues for cyclists

The cycle infrastructure ends at the edge of the Town Centre. There is no way to (lawfully) cycle into the shopping area although people do.

Consequently, there are no 'through routes' that serve useful destinations within the town, they all go around the edge of the Town Centre and at the back of commercial buildings away from entrances.

Existing cycle parking where provided at all is often remote from building entrances or in places that are not overlooked by windows.

This makes the official cycle parking locations less convenient and less secure, leading to bikes being propped up in shop doorways or attached to other street furniture that is in more secure or convenient places.

Existing surface level pedestrian crossings are staggered with a narrow central reserve, making them inconvenient for cycling and inaccessible to some types of cycle. This is particularly an issue by Harlow College where the cycle track from the leisure centre leads towards the Town Centre.

Issues for pedestrians

There are two places where pedestrians cross the ring road without formal facilities:

  • Fourth Avenue by Sainsburys where people cross the road and climb through a fence to cross the surface car park to get to Post Office Road and the Town Centre.
  • Haydens Road near the TKMaxx service yard where a footpath connects to Water Gardens and people cross from the Hare Street residential district.


Within the Town Centre the main issue for pedestrians is that many access points involve crossing service and delivery areas and car park entrance/exit routes. There is a real lack of coherence.

The arrangement of buildings is such that there are very few 'vistas' where it is possible to see through in a straight line, on the approach to the Town Centre. Most of the pedestrian routes into the Town Centre from the outside are relatively narrow and have a lot of blank brick and concrete frontages because the orientation of shops and businesses is 'inwards' to the central streets and squares. This makes the approach routes unattractive and uninspiring. It may be possible to work with businesses to open up window spaces or display public art to make these approach routes more inviting and interesting.

Once inside the central area there are good quality linear routes and public squares, and the wider open spaces make navigation much more intuitive.

There are few steps within the central area and alternative ramp access is always provided.



Emerging policy context

Policy SIR1 (Draft Harlow Local Development Plan, 2017) outlines a commitment to deliver the timely provision of infrastructure necessary to support development in Harlow, including the North-South Sustainable Transport Corridor. Policy SIR2 identifies key gateway locations which will be integrated within the wider transport and green infrastructure network of Harlow, enhanced by improvements to the public realm. This includes vehicular and pedestrian access points to the north of the Town Centre. Policy IN1 promotes sustainable modes of travel as part of development proposals.

What you've told us

There is keen interest in opportunities to improve transport and movement through the AAP. Participants in the consultation exercise have endorsed the analysis of the key issues and there is broad support for a more frequent and reliable means of public transport which would connect key destinations via the station.

Alongside this, there is interest in more radical proposals to reduce the traffic dominance of Velizy Avenue and Fourth Avenue to create a better environment around the Town Centre and better connections for pedestrians and cyclists. There is also some interest in exploring the managed re-introduction of traffic where this contributes positively to the Town Centre.


Issue

How could the future pattern of streets and movement contribute to the regeneration of the Town Centre? What interventions could be progressed for different modes of transport?

Options

Option 2.1 – Framework of streets

There is considerable merit in creating a strong north-south axis within the Town Centre which would reunite the northern and southern halves of the Town Centre. The Sustainable Transport Corridor could be an extension to Terminus Street, and act as a means of allowing buses to better penetrate the Town Centre and travel away from the collar roads where they share road space with general traffic and thus liable to traffic congestion.

The new urban blocks to the north of the Town Centre could include a new "high road" parallel to Fourth Avenue, fronting Rectory Wood on one site. This additional street could help dissipate traffic flow such that both streets could be laid out as relatively narrow, human- scale streets compared to the existing sweeping dual carriageway of Fourth Avenue.

Option 2.2 – Potential pedestrian and cycle improvements

The creation of a "boulevard" along Fourth Avenue complements the north-south axis concept (see option 2.1) by providing a similarly strong east-west principal street. This street has scope to include cycle tracks alongside. This would provide a shorter desire-line route for NCN1, which currently diverts north around the Town Centre on a cycle track which is hemmed in between the backs of industrial units and heavily planted trees, thus offering a poor level of social safety.



Indicative Sustainable Transport Corridor

The transformation of Fourth Avenue and Velizy Avenue into boulevard streets may allow the existing pedestrian subways to be replaced with surface crossings – or at least converted to dedicated cycle-only subways. While the subways offer relatively convenient traffic free routes, the gentle gradients that make for comfortable cycling conditions results in lengthy ramps that lack active frontage and thus offer poor safety for pedestrians who have to traverse them much more slowly.

Along Haydens Road, pedestrians already make use of informal refuges to cross the road in two stages. This practice could be extended and enhanced by laying out the street with a continuous central median, allowing flexible and informal crossing along its length. This central median could also allow right-turn movements for vehicles (see option 2.4).

Option 2.3 – Bus improvements

The creation of "boulevard" streets – including a new north-south boulevard corresponding to Terminus Street in the Town Centre – present scope for on-street bus stops, reducing the need for a substantial bus station. East Gate – which used to be open to traffic before pedestrianisation – could also be opened up as a bus street, to allow buses to better penetrate the Town Centre. This approach would work most effectively with the aspirational Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, with a network of routes criss-crossing at the Town Centre. The existing bus network predominantly consists of buses terminating in the Town Centre, which results in the need for substantial layover space in the bus station and other streets.

The same could be said for the new north-south street parallel to Velizy Avenue, however there is benefit in this being a primarily bus and service-vehicle oriented street. This would allow the BRT system to avoid congestion on the main road network, and thus offer a more attractive service. This philosophy could be extended further north towards the station by routeing the BRT via Newstead Way instead of Allende Avenue, with a short section of new bus-only road being constructed to link back to Allende Way south of the Burnt Mill roundabout.




Potential movement proposals - assuming a long-term / comprehensive scenario (option 1.3)



Option 2.4 - Road network

The use of roundabouts around the collar of roads at the edge of the Town Centre allows for many accesses to operate as left-in-left-out, which provides efficient traffic flow but is not necessarily very legible. The breaking of the "collar" around the north and east with the creation of boulevards on Fourth Avenue and Velizy Avenue would disrupt this pattern and could require the introduction of a series of all-movements junctions. Further design and traffic modelling would be required to fully understand how these streets would operate, but it may be necessary to retain some of the roundabouts.

Roundabouts are generally not pedestrian and cycle friendly because they encourage continuous flow of vehicles, with fast exit speeds of the circulatory carriageway. In locations where the roundabouts have single- lane approaches, these could be made more pedestrian and cycle friendly by being laid out as continental roundabouts. These operate with the same priority arrangement as UK roundabouts, but narrower entry and exit paths coupled with a tighter circulatory carriageway result in slower traffic speeds all round and thus easier conditions for pedestrians and cyclists.

Traffic modelling could test whether the existing four-lane dual carriageway roads would operate satisfactorily with fewer lanes, and thus being more suitable for continental geometry roundabouts.


Option 2.5 - Rely on emerging planning guidance on parking in Local Plan policy

In this option, the AAP would rely on the District-wide parking policy position as set out in the Local Plan in Policy IN3 which allows for reduced parking in areas of good public transport accessibility.

Option 2.6 – Establish specific town centre car parking policy

The AAP could include a Town Centre specific parking policy in relation to public and general "town centre" car parking and residential standards for new developments to complement Policy IN3. These two elements are set out below:

Public and general town centre car parking

A large proportion of the town centre's parking is already provided within multi-storey car parks, some of which are old structures and might approach the end of their design life during the plan period. However, Post Office Road and newer parking provision including Harlow Leisurezone and Sainsbury's is located in surface car parks.

In order to realise the regeneration potential of the Town Centre, there would be merit in consolidating surface car parking as decked structures or multi-storey car parks to make better use of valuable town centre sites. This could free up space for development of new town centre uses. In many cases, under-used car park sites occupy very visible locations which undermine the overall quality of the street environment and sense of arrival in the Town Centre. Wherever possible, opportunities to create parking facilities which are integrated into the street scene to establish active streets should be taken. Flexibility could be established to future-proof parking buildings to allow conversion to other uses in the event that demand for parking changes in the future.



The more comprehensive scenarios assume some redevelopment and consolidation of car parking facilities including public car parking and parking for specific uses which function as general town centre car parking. In some cases, adjacent uses might consolidate their parking provision to create more efficient, shared facilities.

Residential parking standards

Analysis has demonstrated that a case could be made for a lower town centre specific residential parking standard for new development. This would be justified by the relatively high accessibility of the town centre and the existence of shops and services in close proximity. The precise approach would need to be defined at the next stage of the AAP, but might comprise the identification of a base provision of "allocated" spaces for dwellings supported by an additional provision of "unallocated" spaces depending on the type / size of dwelling. This unallocated provision would be shared between all residents and reflects that there is a varying level of car ownership across households. This is a more efficient approach than providing solely allocated parking, which results in many unused spaces being built, and could be more attractive to developers and residents.

The unallocated parking provision could be accommodated within the consolidated town centre car parks, with the allocated provision forming part of the developments themselves. Alternatively, unallocated parking could be assumed to be on-street parking within the new town centre streets assuming these would not be taken up by evening economy visitors.


Direction of travel

There is a need to progress a wide range of movement improvements which establish better connections for all modes between the Town Centre and other destinations in Harlow including employment areas, the railway station and surrounding neighbourhoods (options 2.2 to 2.4).

A number of catalytic projects will help to establish momentum for these movement proposals including the wider Garden Village development and employment growth through the Enterprise Zone and the arrival of Public Health England. The impetus to deliver improved public transport improvements though the Sustainable Transport Corridor via Bus Rapid Transit system is particularly important in this regard.

In addition, as noted in policy theme 1, the Town Centre itself has significant growth potential across a number of sectors. As set out in the commentary on the approach to strategic growth, the emerging direction of travel should seek to support longer-term development potential as far as possible by future proofing a more comprehensive approach in the context of the overarching vision for the Town Centre (option 2.1).

The AAP is likely to define a town centre specific policy for general town centre / public car parking. A flexible approach will be required to facilitate the regeneration of a number of sites. There is also a strong case for a town centre specific parking standard which reflects the AAP aspirations for a more sustainable town centre which is less reliant on cars (option 2.6).

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.


THEME 3: PUBLIC REALM


Background

Harlow Town Centre has a varying quality of public realm across the main shopping areas. The existence of street clutter, poor quality street furniture and paving create a negative perception. Service yards and associated access severs many central areas of public realm.

Although the wider town boasts an impressive armature of green wedges and landscape, the Town Centre itself has a lack of planting and green spaces. Mature tree planting is often limited to car parking areas rather than public spaces or streets. There is a proud tradition of sculpture in the town – although this remains a feature, it has been delivered with less success in recent years. The setting of these important works of public art is not always fitting or appropriate. Public realm improvements, including landscaped gardens, have recently been made to the south of Harlow Town Centre, as part of The Water Gardens Shopping Centre redevelopment.

Emerging policy context

In the Draft Local Development Plan (2017), Policy PL1 identifies a range of design principles for Harlow which includes reference to public realm improvements. Policy L3 provides guidance in relation to public art and sculpture both new and existing. Other guidance including Policies PL4, PL5 and PL7 set out criteria for the design of other open spaces.

Harlow Design Guide (2011) and Essex Design Guide (2005) set out underlying design principles to guide development and encourage a design-led approach. The reports make reference to general place-making principles, inclusive design, public open space, permeability and legibility.


A Spatial Vision and Design Charter for Harlow and Gilston Town is being prepared in parallel with the AAP which sets out a clear vision and framework that will support the regeneration of Harlow Town Centre by drawing on true Garden Town principles.

What you've told us

Public realm has proven to be a key area of focus through the consultation discussions. Improvements to Market Square and Broad Walk are both identified as priorities. Opportunities to celebrate the town's sculptural heritage and to create more "green" landscape within central Harlow are supported. Feedback highlighted the need to consider public realm and movement proposals in tandem, and to ensure that interventions are deliverable with respect to land ownership and adjacent development proposals.

Issue

How should spaces and connections be improved to support the experience of visiting the Town Centre? Which spaces should be prioritised?

Options

Option 3.1 - Town Centre public realm principles

Identify a general policy which defines key principles and guidance for streets and spaces in the Town Centre that are inclusive and accessible for all. This should make reference to the original elements of the Gibberd masterplan which included a commitment to excellence in relation to public art and sculpture and preservation of existing landscape and natural features.


Options 3.2 - Site specific guidance

Prepare site / area specific guidance including illustrative material for specific streets and spaces in the Town Centre. Incorporate appropriate illustrative material to communicate the opportunities.

Town Centre boundary

Public realm

Secondary public realm

Boulevard streets

Green space

Public realm opportunities based on the long-term framework

Direction of Travel

Policy guidance for the Town Centre should incorporate general principles for the AAP area as a whole (option 3.1) as well as specific areas (option 3.2), particularly where this relates to one or more development sites, or a coordinated approach is needed with respect to integration with movement proposals.

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.


THEME 4: URBAN DESIGN


Background

The original plan aesthetic consists of a formal composition to the arrangement of the streets and spaces in Harlow. Buildings and public spaces have been laid out on an irregular rectilinear grid with aligning frontages and clearly defined corners.

Analysis has highlighted a high degree of separation between residential neighbourhoods and the Town Centre. This sense of severance is exacerbated by the ring road which encloses the rectilinear grid.

Although a lack of clear hierarchy and absence of a typical structure reduces the overall legibility of the Town Centre from surrounding neighbourhoods, a number of central landmark buildings characterise views from the rural hinterland and act as a marker for the Town Centre.


Within the Town Centre, many public spaces lack any sense of night-time or leisure uses which contributes to a significant lack of life and vibrancy in the evenings. Similarly, low quality arrival points, poor legibility and the absence of frontages on some pedestrian routes has a very negative impact on the experience of being in the Town Centre. Building heights and scale also influence the Town Centre experience and can negatively impact the setting of heritage assets if not sympathetically integrated.

Notwithstanding these issues, the original "Plan aesthetic" is still apparent in the northern section of Town Centre and opportunities exist to retain and enhance this grain through the AAP.



Active frontages

Poor frontages

Frontage quality




Emerging policy context

Good design is a key commitment in the Draft Local Development Plan (2017) with reference to general opportunities to high quality architecture, sustainability, spaces and connections and positive reference to the New Town heritage associated with the Gibberd masterplan. Key emerging policy references in this context are PL1, PL2, PL3, PL4 and PL5.

Harlow Design Guide (2011) and Essex Design Guide (2005) set out underlying design principles to guide development and encourage a design-led approach. The documents make reference to general place- making principles, urban character, building heights, inclusive design, public open space, permeability and legibility.

A Spatial Vision and Design Charter for Harlow and Gilston Town is being prepared in parallel with the AAP which sets out a clear vision and framework that will support the regeneration of Harlow Town Centre by drawing on true Garden Town principles.


What you've told us

Consultation has revealed a significant depth of understanding and appreciation of Harlow's history and the principles behind the Gibberd masterplan.

Some participants have noted the importance of establishing a positive response to the original masterplan, the sculptural heritage and positive elements in the architectural heritage of the Town Centre.

Issue

How should the AAP facilitate high quality design which responds positively to the existing character and context of the Town Centre?


Harlow is visible from the outer edges of the town, shown diagrammatically above.


Options

Option 4.1 - Guidance on character, height, scale and massing

Incorporate Town Centre-wide urban design guidance in relation to key topics such as urban character, urban form and structure, building heights, scale and massing. This is likely to focus on qualitative, criteria-based statements with appropriate reference to illustrative material. The importance of the intact plan aesthetic in the northern part of the Town Centre is likely to be highlighted.

Option 4.2 - Site specific guidance

Define site-specific guidance alongside illustrative proposals for key Opportunity Areas.

Direction of travel

Design quality is a key concern for Harlow Town Centre. Policy guidance is needed to establish a clear framework for proposals and basic parameters for design in relation to layout, the relationship between buildings and streets / spaces and the overall character of development (option 4.1). Although

the guidance should avoid unnecessary prescription, the AAP should have conviction in giving a clear steer which reduces uncertainty, supports consistency with the overall vision, and realises the incremental delivery of the main principles within the AAP.

Illustrative material is likely to be helpful on a site or area basis, but this would be indicative in nature with less status than the proposed policies (option 4.2).

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.


THEME 5: HERITAGE

Background

Despite it's relatively recent evolution, Harlow Town Centre has an important story to tell in terms of its historic development and heritage.

The diagrams opposite show the evolution of the Town Centre since 1966. This narrative relates to the celebration of the plan aesthetic as identified in chapter 5, and to individual buildings or sculptures in the Town Centre.

St Paul's at College Gate is the only listed building in the Town Centre, however, several buildings have distinctive historic character, including a number from the original Gibberd masterplan which are still present. Some of these examples include features which are specific to New Town architecture and Harlow.

The Water Gardens are Grade II listed, built between 1960 and 1963 to the designs of Gibberd, and along with their setting, contribute positively to the heritage of Harlow Town Centre. A number of sculptures also have a special historic character and identity which are an important part of the fabric.

Analysis has identified buildings which negatively impact on the character of the Town Centre and are recommended for redevelopment.

Features and materials specific to Harlow Town Centre





Emerging policy context

Policy PL11 of the draft Local Development Plan (2017) sets out draft guidance relating to heritage assets and their settings included Listed and Locally Listed Buildings, Conservation Areas and Archaeology, and Enabling Development. Strategic policy WE4 'Heritage' gives further guidance on heritage assets and their settings.

What you've told us

There is a genuine interest in Harlow Town Centre's unique design heritage and a desire to see it better promoted. This could include a range of promotional strategies as well as interventions to re-instate features, or design new buildings in a sensitive way. Sculpture is a very important part of the heritage discussion.

Issue

How should the AAP reflect, and better reveal the significance of designated and non- designated assets?

Options

Option 5.1 - Rely on existing Local Plan policies

Policy PL11 and PL12 of the emerging DM DPD provides general guidance in relation to heritage assets and their settings. The AAP could simply cross-reference these policies and provide an overview of the character of the historic built environment as part of the background to any urban design guidance in the AAP.


Option 5.2 - Town centre specific heritage policy

Define specific guidance which seeks to protect and enhance the historic character and setting of Harlow. This could include positive statements to reinforce the importance of designated assets and to highlight the opportunities presented by the retention and re-use of undesignated assets which make a positive contribution. It might also provide criteria-based guidance to assist in the reasoned consideration of comprehensive development proposals.

Direction of travel

In basic policy terms the AAP would need to comply with the guidance as set out in the DM DPD alongside the strategic position established in the National Planning Policy Framework (option 5.1). However, this guidance alone would not provide a sufficiently specific approach for the Town Centre.

A Town Centre heritage policy position would provide an opportunity to celebrate the overarching historic dimension to the Harlow story alongside specific guidance for buildings or other assets which are not formerly recognised. The intention is to establish a richer and more nuanced approach to place-making, stimulating positive reference to heritage and encouraging more imaginative design solutions and opportunities (option 5.2).

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.


Targeted assessment of historic buildings associated with the original Gibberd masterplan

KEY

Positive

1. MarketHouse

2. AdamsHouse

3. 12 EastGate

4. St PaulsHarlow

Positive / neutral

5.Harlow PostOffice

6. OdeonCinema

7. HarlowLibrary

Neutral

8. Broad Walk NEblock

9. Broad Walk NWblock

10. GateHouse

Neutral / negative

11. MarketOffice

Negative

12. TheRows

13. Stone CrossHall

14. 2 EastGate

15. RedstoneHouse

16. Harlow Foyer OccasioHouse


THEME 6: RETAIL, LEISURE AND EVENING ECONOMY


Background

There is an apparent over-supply of retail floorspace in Harlow (Harlow Town Centre Market Analysis Report, 2017), potentially due to lack of investment from private land owners or due to future development aspirations. The Retail Frontages Study (2017) highlighted A1 Town Centre primary frontages reduced from 78% in 2003 to 60% in 2017, mainly due to large store closures (e.g. M&S and BHS). 10.5% of primary frontages and 20.5% of secondary frontages in the Town Centre were vacant in June 2017. New permitted developments allowing greater flexibility of changes-of-use appear to have had little impact.

Studies indicate that there is a lack of medium to large shop units suitable for modern retailing requirements. A lack of higher end retailers and limited commercial leisure offer constrains the overall performance of the Town Centre. Despite the presence of the bus station, the Town Centre has a relatively poor level of accessibility by public transport and is characterised by many areas with poor public realm and underwhelming spaces which creates a poor perception.

Investment is underway through the Cineworld scheme and the re-configuration of the former Marks and Spencer's unit. The existence of clear development opportunities alongside the strategic catchment position and a projected trajectory of growth is major advantage for the Town Centre. There is also a sense that the area's distinctive design heritage in terms of public realm and public art could form the basis of positive place-making strategy which would assist in generating the setting for retail and leisure growth.


Emerging policy context

Draft policies in the emerging Local Development Plan (2017) include guidance for retail, leisure and evening economy activities. Strategic policies RS1-RS3 set out the Council's retail ambitions and gives guidance for the redevelopment of the Town Centre with regards to future retail floorspace and protecting and enhancing existing retail centres. Development Management policies include guidance relating to the sequential test and overarching principles (PR5), primary and secondary frontages (PR6) and sub-division and internal alteration of units (PR7). Draft guidance for evening and night time economy activities is included in draft policy PR11.

What you've told us

Consultation discussions have reflected on the need to re-balance the gravity of the Town Centre by strengthening the Market Square area. There is also interest in attracting a more diverse mix of retailers including some smaller footprint units, and establishing a stronger leisure and evening economy offer, including cultural attractions.

Frontages requiring further review:

Retain to allow more active frontage:

  1. W and S side of Unit 24, Harvey Centre
  2. W Primary frontage of 39 Redstone House
  3. N secondary frontage of 37 Redstone House

Retain for partial or whole change of frontage to retail use:

  1. Central library frontage

Remove secondary frontage:

  1. Mitre House, West Square

Two frontages in Town Centre not mapped with potential for designation as secondary frontage.


Frontage designations - proposed amendments based on 2017 assessment (Harlow Council), see option 6.1



Issue

How should the AAP meet the identified need for retail floorspace in the Town Centre? How can we make the Town Centre more competitive and viable?

Options

Option 6.1 Existing policies and frontage designation

Rely on existing and emerging District-wide policy position in relation to Town Centre uses and primary / secondary retail frontages. This option would entail the implementation of the recommendations in the Council's retail frontage review (July 2017). This is illustrated in the plan on the previous page.

Option 6.2 – Character / activity-based policy position

Establish a Harlow Town Centre specific policy which seeks to manage and support the overall performance of retail, leisure and evening economy through area specific guidance to complement frontage policies. This would focus on a clear articulation of the geographical priorities for retail and leisure activities, alongside supporting urban design and public realm principles and specific statements of intent for each opportunity area. More qualitative in nature, this policy would seek to respond to the need for an emphasis on visiting and enjoying Harlow Town Centre.

Option 6.3 Site based proposals and illustrative material

Prepare illustrative material to describe the vision for areas of the greatest focus for Town Centre activities and uses. This could form part of site-based policy guidance, and supporting material which communicates how guiding principles could be realised. This material could be used to help stimulate investment, to inspire high quality, contextual design, and as a tool in the development management process.

Option 6.4 – Emphasis on cultural opportunities and creative uses

Establish a clear policy position in relation to cultural activities and features including public art. This is a key strength and asset for the Town Centre which helps to define the distinctive character. This dimension could be better appreciated and celebrated, and would play an important role in securing retail and leisure development which relates back to the original principles of the place.

Direction of travel

A combination of the options identified above is likely to form the basis of the policy position in the AAP. An up to date retail frontage policy (option 6.1) is a pre-requisite in relation to the fundamental approach established through the National Planning Policy Framework and embodied in the Draft Local Development Plan (2017). However, there is a clear sense that the AAP should go further in positively describing the character and geography of the Town Centre, and setting more qualitative guidance which captures the place-making vision and aspirations for the area (option 6.2). This includes the importance of developing the night-time economy, including the theatre and other leisure / entertainment activity.

As indicated in option 6.4, there is an opportunity to broaden the emphasis on retail, leisure and evening uses to facilitate greater reference to cultural activities and features which bring the Town Centre to life.

As noted on other topics, site or area specific guidance could incorporate illustrative guidance which has a less formal status, but helps to capture the vision and sets a high, but realistic bar in terms of place-making aspirations (option 6.3).

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.



Character / activity based policy position - see option 6.2

Ground floor activities - other uses such as residential or office will be promoted on upper floors.


THEME 7: OFFICES AND WORKSPACE


Background

Harlow Town Centre is not considered to be an established office market "owing to its size, quality of existing stock and high vacancy rates" (Harlow Town Centre Market Analysis report, May 2017). Some limited provision is located close to Harlow but these units are not fully let and some have been converted to residential use. In addition, a number of Permitted Development conversions of office space to residential have already occurred in the Town Centre which has eroded the supply of workspace in the Town Centre.

The decision for Public Health England to locate a national science base in Harlow is major opportunity and is forecast, alongside Enterprise Zone status, to have positive effects on the office market and values. Significant businesses have signed 15 year lease agreements at Kao Park within the Enterprise Zone. A number of other opportunities exist within the Enterprise Zone including 20,000 sqm of "Grade A" office space and Data Centre development at London Road South, a 14ha design and build site at London Road North for Med Tech, Life Science and ICT sectors, and SME space at Templefields industrial estate.

The Market Analysis report notes that better links are needed between the Town Centre and employment sites are needed to enable Town Centre living for staff in an accessible, well- served location which is close to their work.

The planned relocation of Princess Alexandra Hospital from its current site north west of the town centre to one of two locations in the growth areas to the east and north of the town, will result in the removal of c2,500 from the town centre vicinity. Whilst an increased number of jobs would be supported at the new location (through planned establishment of a Health Campus), replacement jobs close to the town centre should be considered, to support the health and vitality of shops and services.

This also strengthens the requirement for better transport links to/from the centre.

Emerging policy context

The emerging spatial strategy (2014) highlights the target of 8,000 to 12,000 new jobs, although much of this is likely to be associated through the Enterprise Zone areas. The Draft Local Development Plan (2017) sets out policies for employment uses. Policy PR3 identifies support for the provision of B1 office uses above ground floor level in the Town Centre. PR3 also identifies three criteria which must be fulfilled in relation to the loss of existing B1 activities outside of the designated Employment Areas.

What you've told us

Consultation discussions have highlighted the role that an attractive, functional and accessible Town Centre will play in supporting the Enterprise Zone and wider economic growth in the District. There were also suggestions about the role the Town Centre could play in providing start-up space and smaller, flexible workspace for collaboration, co-working, business hubs and hot desking. Larger office space is an appropriate Town Centre use but participants acknowledged the impact of Permitted Development Rights in this regard.

Issue

What role will office space and workspacehave in the future in Harlow Town Centre? Should the Town Centre be positioned as an accessible location for services and amenities and as a residential location to support the sustained economic position of the District?



Options

Option 7.1 – Promote Harlow Town Centre as an office location

The preparation of an Article 4 Direction for the Town Centre is not a realistic course of action given the number of offices which have already seen Permitted Development Rights exercised. In addition, it would not be appropriate for the AAP to identify this as a policy position. In that context, a more suitable approach would be to establish a positive position towards investment in existing stock or new development of office floorspace in the Town Centre. This could set a context for proactive engagement with existing office owners to understand their priorities and explore opportunities to encourage a longer- term view of the Town Centre's potential.

Option 7.2 – Focus on enhancing the complementary role of the Town Centre in supporting employment growth throughout the District

This option would seek to promote a broader view of the role of the Town Centre in supporting the wider economic vitality of the District, in particular developments such as Harlow Enterprise Zone and Public Health England. The wider policies in the AAP have the potential to have positive outcomes for business growth in the District. Specifically, the AAP seeks to promote the focus of retail, leisure and residential uses within the Town Centre, to facilitate improved public transport, walking and cycling connections, and also set a context for a greater emphasis on "town centre living".

These broader changes will help to support the District as a more sustainable business destination which is served by a well-rounded, versatile Town Centre, and adaptable buildings.

Option 7.3 - Promote Harlow Town Centre as a location for SMEs and smaller businesses

Linked to option 7.2, the AAP could seek to explicitly promote the Town Centre as a location for SME's and small businesses, potentially as part of the Enterprise Zone supply chain. Flexible enterprise space could be identified as part of a broader mix of uses including refurbishment / re-purposing of historic properties on a permanent or temporary basis.

Direction of travel

The Town Centre should continue to be promoted as a location for office uses and other forms of workspace (option 7.1 and 7.3). However, it is recognised that a significant proportion of growth in employment floorspace will be focused around Harlow Enterprise Zone and through the development of Public Health England's Science Hub at the former GSK site. In that context, the main emphasis of the AAP should be on the reciprocal benefits between an improving Town Centre and the surrounding business areas (option 7.2). The quality of the environment and range of uses in the Town Centre is a key factor in this, but the most direct factor will be the package of improvements to the movement network as outlined under issue 2.

The AAP will encourage a proactive approach to the delivery of the overall vision and objectives to realise sustainable economic outcomes.

Landowners and developers will be encouraged to take a long-term view with an emphasis on more comprehensive development rather than piecemeal schemes, particularly office to residential conversions under Permitted Development rights where this fails to deliver the potential transformative benefits envisaged in the AAP.

The policy position could also encourage an adaptable approach to the design of buildings, recognising the need for flexibility in the context of shifting economic trends over the course of the plan period and beyond.

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.


THEME 8: PUBLIC AND COMMUNITY INFRASTRUCTURE


Background

Harlow Town Centre has clear strengths in education including Harlow College, Sir Charles Kao UTC and Harlow Advanced Manufacturing & Engineering Centre. These assets are poorly integrated with the Town Centre and feel isolated from the core of the Town Centre by Velizy Avenue. There is also scope for a more efficient approach to community facilities in terms of locations and buildings across the Town Centre. There are currently various community services that exist within the Town Centre in units on temporary leases yet which provide diverse and added uses. Princess Alexandra Hospital is located to the north of the Town Centre and provides essential health and well-being services to residents.

Emerging policy context

Policy L2 of the Draft Local Development Plan (2017) sets a context for the provision of new recreational, sporting, cultural and community uses and facilities and also identifies criteria to manage their loss resulting from development proposals. Strategic Policy SIR1 gives guidance further guidance on education, healthcare and community facilities.

What you've told us

Community facilities, potentially in the form of a "Civic Hub" were identified as a way of drawing the focal point northwards. Opportunities to relocate some civic functions away from the centre might be appropriate. There is clear support for improved connections from the Town Centre to adjacent community uses.


Issue

What approach should be taken to public and community infrastructure to contribute to the overall Town Centre experience and performance?


Opportunities for improved links



Options

Option 8.1 – Links

Promote the provision of more convenient and safe pedestrian links to encourage more residents from surrounding neighbourhoods, and staff and students from education facilities to visit the Town Centre.

Option 8.2 – Co-location / efficient buildings

Specific policy supporting the co-location of facilities in more convenient locations in more efficient buildings. This would enable wider release of sites and regeneration for other Town Centre uses. This approach could apply to Harlow Central Library (already under review), the Council offices, the Police, Fire Station and Magistrates Court. Greater presence of community or civic functions in the north might benefit the Town Centre as a whole.


Direction of Travel

Both options have an important role to play in the AAP. Option 8.1 is emerging as a key priority in relation to the potential movement options outlined under issue 2. It is recommended that a commitment to greater efficiency and co-location is identified as a general policy position in the AAP. This could play a key role in establishing improvements in the quality of social and civic provision and unlocking development potential in Town Centre sites.

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.


Key community buildings


THEME 9: HOMES


Background

The Emerging Local Development Plan sets out a requirement for 12,000 to 15,000 new dwellings required during the plan period. Although significant opportunities exist to deliver new homes in the Town Centre, a significant proportion of growth is likely to come forward in surrounding areas. In that context, other thematic issues, particularly those relating to movement will be important in establishing improved connections from surrounding neighbourhoods and adjacent settlements, and employment destinations to the Town Centre.

New homes in the Town Centre could improve the overall viability of regeneration proposals, bring greater footfall into the Town Centre and also improve the evening economy. The impact of increased residents and a greater evening offer must be considered to ensure a well- managed environment. A number of sites are already being progressed as office to residential conversions under Permitted Development Rights.

It is understood that the delivery of a policy- compliant level of affordable housing is challenging from a viability perspective on some schemes in the Town Centre. This is a complex issue as the level of affordable housing is a major political priority, as is the regeneration of Harlow Town Centre.


Emerging policy context

The Local Plan sets an agenda for significant growth in the Harlow and neighbouring authorities of up to 15,000 new homes and 20ha of employment space.

The emerging Local Development Plan (2017) identifies a requirement to deliver at least 30% affordable housing (policy H8). Other policies in the housing chapter (policies H1 to H10) outline a number of priorities including guidance relating to a range of housing types and sizes, across a range of tenures in major residential development (Harlow Local Development Plan, H6).

SHLAA (2013) – 9,900 new dwellings have been identified in the SHLA which comprise 4,027 committed units committed, 541 completed dwellings and a further 4,300 homes.


KEY

Office-residential Conversion under PDR Mixed use development (predominantly residential)

Existing residential

Pre-application or application in for residential conversion Residential extension approved in addition to PD conversion

Residential development



What you've told us

Consultation demonstrated a broad awareness of the scale of growth which is envisaged

in the wider area. There was broad support for a diverse mix of housing types including affordable housing across the area. There is a degree of concern about the extent of office to residential conversions through Permitted Development.

Issue

Should the AAP define a Town Centre-specific policy position in relation to housing?


Options

Option 9.1 – Rely on emerging planning guidance in Local Plan policy

In this option, the AAP would rely on the District-wide housing position as set out in the Local Plan. No specific housing policy would be identified in the AAP.

Option 9.2 - Town centre specific residential policies

Further discussion and debate is required in relation to the preparation of a Harlow Town Centre specific housing policy. It is likely that this would recognise the need for a mix more heavily weighted towards high quality apartment typologies in the context of realising mixed and balanced communities.

In terms of affordable housing, an option exists to provide more explicit criteria for a reduction from the 30% minimum target as set out in emerging DM DPD policy H8.

Currently the draft policy refers to the need for an independent viability assessment as justification for any deviation. A Town Centre specific policy might reiterate the minimum target but could also reference the need to consider viability in the context of wider AAP priorities relating to the overall performance and vitality of the Town Centre in relation to design quality, town centre management initiatives, town centre uses, historic setting and public realm improvements as well as other wider S106 priorities such as education.

Option 9.3 – Improved connections to surroundings

Promote improved accessibility and linkages between the surrounding neighbourhoods and the Town Centre (see issue 2).

Option 9.4 - Site specific guidance

The AAP could make reference to residential guidance and priorities as part of specific site guidance and illustrative material (see section 6B).


Direction of travel

Further discussion and review of options 9.1 and 9.2 is required as the resultant policy position would influence the negotiations relating to affordable housing on Town Centre sites. This is a complex issue as the delivery of mixed and balanced communities, including an appropriate level of affordable housing is a strategic priority for the Council.

Option 9.2 is considered to be a positive step as it would set a context for the clear definition of specific Town Centre priorities which are vital to the future prosperity and sustainability of Harlow Town Centre in the round. This option could enable a more nuanced policy position for negotiation purposes which would re- iterate the District-wide affordability targets, but critically strengthen the Council's hand in realising wider priorities including public realm, movement and landscape benefits which will play a key role in the regeneration of the Town Centre.

Option 9.3 is likely to be progressed under the movement heading (Issue 2). Option 9.4 relates to the identification of illustrative guidance as part of guidance relating to key sites / opportunity areas and is also likely to be taken forward.

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.


THEME 10: CREATIVE USES


Background

There is a strong tradition of cultural activities and enterprise in Harlow Town Centre which continues to have a positive impact on the Town Centre offer, creating diversity and bringing a different audience to a Town Centre location. The AAP has a role to play in reflecting this strength and potential as a component in the broader growth of the area.

Harlow Playhouse had a high profile but its small seating capacity compared to other local and regional theatres meant it did not attract some of the higher quality tours. In recent years, consideration was given to the replacement of the Playhouse with a large theatre, but this proved challenging to progress and is not currently being pursued.

Parndon Mill has several small creative businesses in an attractive historic environment on the River Stort. There is also limited creative business space at the Gibberd Gallery and Eastgate Arts. These are both centrally located in the Town Centre but could have a far greater profile. The Square music venue closed a few years ago and has been missed by residents.

The venue had a regional reputation and high- profile range performers.

Emerging policy context

Policy L2 sets a positive context for cultural and community facilities in the Draft Local Development Plan (2017).

What you've told us

People would like to see a stronger cultural offer in the Town Centre, particularly in terms of activities for younger people and a replacement music venue.


Issue

With a significant number of new homes planned for the Harlow and Gilston Garden Town, and the relocation of Public Health England to the town, how can Harlow Town Centre increase its cultural offer and creative industries base to serve the new population?

Options

Option 10.1 - Review existing underutilised sites for possible arts spaces within the town

The AAP could establish a context for a focused review of potential sites for arts spaces in the Town Centre. Possible sites could be identified as part of site specific guidance. A general policy position with a presumption in favour of creative development could be established. Further feasibility studies might be required to develop a clear brief, identification of need and broad business case for new facilities. These could include a gallery, spaces for young people and/or a music venue in the Town Centre - perhaps at the northern end to rebalance gravity.

Option 10.2 - Review funding opportunities for a replacement theatre

The AAP could identify support for a new theatre facility to replace Harlow Playhouse.

In doing so it would be helpful to progress a specific project to assess whether the theatre is a viable longer-term proposition.


Direction of travel

Both options include positive reference to aspirational projects for the Town Centre which are suitable to include in the AAP, potentially under a single policy statement. It is important that the policy is supported by a clear direction of travel in terms of delivery to maximise the prospect of implementation.

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.

Public art in the Town Centre


THEME 11: DELIVERY


Background

The Harlow Town Centre Market Analysis report (Cushman and Wakefield, 2017) identifies a series of key priorities for delivery. Six main areas of potential focus are identified as follows which have been cast as options below. There is a degree of overlap with specific thematic options identified in early sections and these have been identified for ease of reference.

Emerging policy context

The emerging policies in the Draft Local Development Plan (2017) make explicit reference to implementation under each policy heading. This includes specific reference to infrastructure (SIR1, SIR2 and IN1 to IN6).

What you've told us

Consultation discussions have only considered the broad topic of delivery in strategic terms. However there is strong sense that delivery is now a major priority for the Town Centre to maintain a competitive position and offer.

Issue

What are the key priorities for the AAP delivery strategy? Which elements can be used to drive the implementation of the overarching vision and objectives?


Options

Option 11.1 - Public sector led

Explore the potential for consolidation of public sector accommodation requirements across the Town Centre as part of a One Public Estate-type style initiative (see also, option 8.2) or as part of a broader delivery vehicle. This consolidation could help to release surplus land for development and provide new facilities that could benefit occupiers in terms of being more efficient buildings as well as underpinning regeneration more broadly.

Option 11.2 – Land assembly

Produce a land assembly strategy and take a proactive approach in assembling sites in the Town Centre that can provide a more compelling proposition in terms of scale to a potential development partner. The possible use of compulsory purchase powers could help to achieve this.

Option 11.3 – Proactive approach to planning

Develop a clear vision and development strategy for the Town Centre to promote opportunities and guide landowners and developers – this could be through a development framework or an Area Action Plan including a Town Centre specific approach to key planning issues where appropriate.

Option 11.4 – Improving transport and accessibility

Work with the County Council and bus service providers to improve bus, walking and cycling links between the Town Centre and the rail station. Enhance pedestrian links between the Town Centre and nearby facilities that are currently isolated from the Town Centre such as Harlow College and the Sir Charles Kao UTC.

This will encourage users of these facilities to use the Town Centre to a greater extent.

Improve the quality and safety of car parks in the Town Centre.



Option 11.5 – Enhancing the quality of the environment

Develop a strategy for the public realm enhancements in the Town Centre and explore funding sources as well as ensuring that development proposals from third parties contribute to improving the public realm in accordance with the strategy.

Option 11.6 – Town centre promotion and management

Work with public and private sector partners and businesses in the Town Centre to develop a Business Improvement District proposal which aims to promote and market the Town Centre, including events.

Option 11.7 - Town centre specific S106 position

The Council could develop a town centre specific policy position in relation to S106 agreements. This might highlight the specific S106 priorities for the town centre. It could also highlight the need to reflect the changing viability of proposals over the lifetime of the Plan Period / development scheme. This could build ina stronger reference to a S106 review mechanism based on the relative viability as a scheme progresses.


Direction of travel

A combination of the options above will set a robust context for the delivery strategy in the AAP. The specific details of particular priorities would be articulated most appropriately

in the topic specific policy sections of the document. Option 11.3 is an implicit element in the preferred approach as it relates to the preparation of an Area Action Plan and the identification of Town Centre specific policies.

The table on page 90 illustrates the relative role of each option in realising the AAP Spatial Objectives.

Options summary

This table highlights how each option could help realise the Spatial Objectives in Chapter 5.


AAP SPATIAL OBJECTIVES

AAP OPTIONS

1. Retain plan aesthetic

2. Respond to urban structure

3. Rebalance focus of gravity northwards

4. Change street character of inner ring road

5. Establish a unified centre

6. Establish street frontage & attractive approaches

7. Connect to & draw in green space

8. Frame views of buildings & spaces

9. Celebrate & reflect design heritage

10. Reinstate access through Town Centre

STRATEGIC GROWTH

Option 1.1 - Baseline scenario









Option 1.2 - Medium intervention scenario

Option 1.3 - High intervention scenario

MOVEMENT

Option 2.1 - Framework of streets






Option 2.2 - Potential pedestrian and cycle improvements





Option 2.3 - Bus improvements





Option 2.4 - Road network






Option 2.5 - Rely on emerging planning guidance on parking











Option 2.6 - Establish specific town centre car parking policy








PUBLIC REALM

Option 3.1 - Town centre public realm principles


Option 3.2 - Site specific guidance


URBAN DESIGN

Option 4.1 - Guidance on character, height, scale and massing





Option 4.2 - Site specific guidance





HERITAGE

Option 5.1 - Rely on existing Local Plan policies











Option 5.2 - Town centre specific heritage policy









RETAIL, LEISURE & EVENING ECONOMY

Option 6.1 - Existing policies and frontage designation










Option 6.2 - Character / activity-based policy position







Option 6.3 - Site based proposals and illustrative material







Option 6.4 - Emphasis on cultural opportunities & creative uses












AAP SPATIAL OBJECTIVES

AAP OPTIONS

1. Retain plan aesthetic

2. Respond to urban structure

3. Rebalance focus of gravity northwards

4. Change street character of inner ring road

5. Establish a unified centre

6. Establish street frontage & attractive approaches

7. Connect to & draw in green space

8. Frame views of buildings & spaces

9. Celebrate & reflect design heritage

10. Reinstate access through Town Centre

OFFICE AND WORKSPACE

Option 7.1 - Promote Harlow Town Centre as an office location










Option 7.2 - Enhancing the complementary role of the TC








Option 7.3 - Promote Harlow Town Centre as a location for SMEs








PUBLIC & COMMUNITY INFRASTRUCTURE

Option 8.1 - Links








Option 8.2 - Co-location / efficient buildings









HOMES

Option 9.1 - Rely on emerging planning guidance in Local Plan











Option 9.2 - Town centre specific residential policies









Option 9.3 - Improved connections to surroundings








Option 9.4 - Site specific guidance







CREATIVE USES

Option 10.1 - Review underutilised sites for possible arts spaces









Option 10.2 - Review funding opportunities for a theatre









DELIVERY

Option 11.1 - Public sector led







Option 11.2 - Land assembly







Option 11.3 - Proactive approach to planning

Option 11.4 - Improving transport and accessibility






Option 11.5 - Enhancing the quality of the environment








Option 11.6 - Town centre promotion and management







Option 11.7 - Town centre specific S106 position











Relationships between AAP Policy themes and AAP Spatial Objectives


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