Thousands of new homes could be set for Chichester

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Chichester and its surrounding villages could see a housing explosion over the next decade after possible locations for thousands of new homes were revealed this week.

Five options have been put forward – with the first earmarking land near Goodwood airfield and motor circuit for up to 1,100 new homes, as well as 1,500 homes at Tangmere.

Added to that are 700 homes at Portfield/Shopwhyke, around 300 at Southbourne, about 450 at East Wittering and Bracklesham, up to 150 at Selsey, and up to 650 elsewhere in the area. Specific sites would be identified later.

The options – for housing up to 2028 – were revealed as part of a detailed report aimed at helping to devise a new planning document called a ‘core strategy’.

Each option gives priority to a different development in the main areas of the city, Tangmere, East Wittering and Bracklesham, Selsey and Southbourne, and across the smaller villages.

In the north of the district, excluding the national park, the overall targets being considered for housing are described as ‘relatively low’.

Depending on what is eventually agreed, 305 to 415 new homes a year could be built in the south of the district with 12 to 20 new homes a year in the area which includes Kirdford, Loxwood, and Wisborough Green.

Chichester District Council’s cabinet met on Tuesday to hear details of the report and if it agrees, a four-week informal consultation will take place, starting on August 26. Comments will also be invited on a range of different housing targets.

Cllr Myles Cullen, cabinet member for economy, property and tourism, said people would be asked to respond during the informal consultation to questions about what level of housing was required, and about which locations should be the main focus for development.

“The results of this consultation will be taken into account in the preparation of the core strategy, which will go out to consultation in January and February, 2012,” he said.

Cllr Janet Duncton, cabinet member for housing and planning, said: “We desperately need more affordable housing to be built, but the recession has slowed things down.

“We know we have to cater for growth in the population, and so we want to hear from residents, developers and partners on what they think we should be providing, and where.”

Also being recommended by the cabinet is a consultation starting on August 26 for a development brief covering sites in northern Chichester.

The aim is to guide development on surplus NHS land, land at Barnfield Drive, and land at the University of Chichester.

Breakdown of the five options:

Option One: Possible sites in the south include an area of open land to the north east of the city, beyond the River Lavant, near Goodwood airfield and motor circuit, for up to 1,100 new homes.

Other possibilities as part of this option include up to 1,500 homes at Tangmere, 700 at Portfield/Shopwhyke, about 300 at Southbourne, about 450 at East Wittering and Bracklesham, up to 150 at Selsey, and up to 650 elsewhere in the area.

Option Two: Gives priority to the city rather than Tangmere, and allows for a higher level of development in ‘settlement hubs’ and smaller villages than option one.

As in option one, there would be 700 at Portfield/Shopwhyke and up to 1,100 north-east of the city, depending on the overall housing target.

There would be a combined total of 1,450 homes at East Wittering, Southbourne and Selsey, and a further 800 elsewhere in the south of the district. If the overall housing target is relatively low, provision would be made for about 250 homes at Tangmere - if it is higher, this would rise to 800.

Option Three: Gives priority to development away from the city, focusing on Tangmere and the other settlement hubs, and providing significantly more development in smaller villages than option one.

Strategic development land would be identified at Tangmere, with between 950 and 1,500 homes, up to 400 to the north east of the city and up to 700 at Portfield/Shopwhyke.

Southbourne would have 500 new homes, East Wittering and Bracklesham 750, Selsey 200, and elsewhere in the south of the district 800.

Option Four: Combines elements of options one ro three, providing for ‘more balanced’ distribution’ across all the identified locations.

Option Five: Represents the maximum level of housing that the council considers may be achievable in the area over the period to 2028 - an average of 415 new homes a year.

There would be 1,100 north-east of the city, 1,500 at Tangmere, 700 at Portfield/Shopwhyke, 200 at Selsey, 750 at East Wittering, 500 at Southbourne and 800 elsewhere in the area.

*Also being recommended by the cabinet is a consultation starting on August 26 for a development brief covering sites in northern Chichester.

The aim is to guide development on surplus NHS land, land at Barnfield Drive, and land at the University of Chichester.