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The proposed Housing Allocations are contrary to the following paragraphs of the NPPF - 34, 38, 47 (Last Bullet Point), 58 (4th Bullet Point), 74, 112, 111, 110, 109, 107 (2nd Bullet Point), 100 and 87, and should not be taken forward into the final plan. Development on the proposed scale is inappropriate, conflicting with the NPPF and is therefore considered to be unsound.
However, if both sites are to be taken forward to the final plan they should be amended to consider the following points.
The proposed housing densities at both allocated sites are too high and should be reduced by at least 30% in order to reflect existing housing densities locally, existing character, size and policies contained within the NPPF.
Affordable Homes/Market Rent/Starter Homes should be included within the Policy to avoid any 'viability' excuses from Developers at the time of an application. Any development should include Bungalows or retirement properties as the aging population of Mersea Island continue to live in existing family homes due to lack of suitable housing - this causing an issue for young families.
Both sites are outside the existing development boundary of the island. The Policy needs strengthening to avoid high densities and low proportions of open space out of character with the rest of the existing settlement. Acceptable details regarding Scale and Massing needs to be included within the policy to avoid out of character development being permitted.
These allocations are poorly integrated into the existing community and encourage the use of unsustainable transport, contrary to the NPPF. With limited public transport options and a lengthy distance from amenities, these houses will see a significant increase in cars on the island, already an issue during the summer months especially.