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2 Facilities and services

Does the development provide (or is it close to) community facilities, such as shops, schools, workplaces, parks, play areas, pubs or cafes?

2a Are there enough facilities and services in the local area to support the development?
If not, what is needed?

Where new facilities are proposed:

2b Are these facilities what the area needs?

2c Are these new facilities located in the right place? If not, where should they go?

We recommend

Planning development so that everyday facilities and services are located within a short walk of people's homes. The layout of a development and the quality of connections it provides can make a significant impact on walking distances and people's travel choices.

Providing access to facilities through the provision of safe, convenient and direct paths or cycle routes. Consider whether there are any barriers to pedestrian/cycle access (for example, busy roads with a lack of crossing points) and how these barriers can be removed or lessened.

Locating new facilities (if provided) where the greatest number of existing and new residents can access them easily, recognising that this may be at the edge of a new development or on a through route; but consider whether existing facilities can be enhanced before proposing new ones.

Where new local centres are provided, design these as vibrant places with smaller shops combined with residential accommodation above rather than for example, a single storey, single use supermarket building. Work to integrate these facilities into the fabric of the wider development to avoid creating an isolated retail park type environment dominated by car parking and highways infrastructure.

Creating new places within a development where people can meet each other such as public spaces, community buildings, cafes and restaurants. Aim to get these delivered as early as possible. Think carefully about how spaces could be used and design them with flexibility in mind, considering where more active (and noisier) spaces should be located so as to avoid creating potential conflict between users and adjacent residents.

We recommend that you avoid

  • Locating play areas directly in front of people's homes where they may become a source of tension. Carefully consider the distance between play equipment and homes in addition to the type of play equipment selected and the target age group.
  • Creating the potential for future conflict if residential uses and commercial premises are not combined thoughtfully.