Today I attended Carmarthenshire County Council's (CCC) LDP Stakeholder Workshop at The Beacon in Dafen. The workshop was attended by Architects, Planners and other Stakeholders such as Housing Associations to engage on the upcoming Local Development Plan (LDP). For all my frequent grumbles about CCC, I've always found that they acknowledge that improvements can be made and host events such as this for feedback from construction industry professionals.
Much of today's agenda was taken up by financial considerations, i.e.
- House Prices
- Construction Costs
- Section 106 Agreements
- Financing Developments
- Land Values
- Developer Profit Margins
All of these factor when trying to assess the viability of a development, something the County Council has to consider when assessing candidate sites for inclusion in the next LDP. Many of the stakeholders of the room seemed to be in agreement that the current set-up inadvertently penalised one-off and small scale developers who pay disproportionately high section 106 contribution costs in comparison to large scale developers. Would you agree that this is the case? Has this stopped you developing in Carmarthenshire? If so, then please get in touch. CCC have requested evidence of the situation that they can use to justify policy proposals when putting them to Welsh Government.
There's not much time left, as the deposit plan is anticipated soon, given the short timescales the cabinet member has demanded for the completion of the LDP process. It will be interesting to see if CCC change any of their policies in relation to contributions in their next plan.