In theory, yes – approved neighbourhood planning documents can play a key role in stopping unwanted development. The documents name sites for housing developments and, if they are approved in a referendum, they become a legally binding element of the council’s planning policy. The council should then be able to reject planning applications for development of sites that aren’t included in the Neighbourhood Plan. However, neighbourhood plans could become automatically invalid if the council cannot prove it has secured enough immediately available housing land to meet the next three years’ demand.
With regards to the City Plan for DA6 (Hove Station area), we believe the area can and should accommodate more new housing than the minimum 650 units proposed in the City Plan. But increased housing must be accompanied by a proportionate increase in the provision of statutory services, particularly education, health and social services, within or close to the redevelopment area.
The Neighbourhood Plan should develop and promote an integrated, rather than a piecemeal, approach to the regeneration of DA6. Thus it should establish an overall spatial development framework which will ensure that each development project contributes in a distinctive and complementary way to the creation of a new Hove Station Urban Quarter.