Background documents

National planning guidance requires that development plan documents are founded on robust and credible evidence.

We have identified a number of studies that are required to provide this evidence base. Where applicable, the title of the document also includes a reference number. This relates to the council's Reference Documents Library.

Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment

Read the strategic housing land availability assessment page.

Strategic Housing Market Assessment

The purpose of the Strategic housing market assessment is to enable the understanding of the dynamics of housing markets across Cambridgeshire and to provide the evidence needed to guide investment in housing across all tenures.

The 2012 SHMA can be found at Cambridgeshire Insight

The 2008 SHMA produced by Cambridgeshire Horizons can also be found at Cambridgeshire Insight.

Employment Land Review

In 2007, Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council commissioned consultants to produce the Employment Land Review 2008 [PDF, 13MB] (RD/E/010) for the combined area of both authorities.

In summer 2012 the councils commissioned consultants to update the Employment Land Review to inform the production of the new Local Plan. This update looks at:

  • projected demand for employment space and employment land
  • changes with regard to the supply of employment land and premises
  • planning employment provision for the economy of the Cambridge area for 2011 to 31
  • a review of selective management of employment policies

Download the Employment Land review update 2012 [PDF, 1.8MB] (RD/E/020)

In 2013 Cambridge City Council commissioned a further update of the Employment Land Review to look at the jobs projections coming out of the work informing the Memorandum of Cooperation.
Download the Employment Land Review update 2013.pdf (RD/E/030)Cambridge Sub-Region Retail Study - RD/E/080

In October 2008, Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council commissioned consultants GVA Grimley to carry out the Cambridge Sub-Region Retail Study.

This was to inform retail planning in accordance with guidance set out in planning policy statement 6 - planning for town centres.

The study forms part of the evidence base for retail policies and allocations for future planning policy documents, allowing each council to make informed choices about the nature and extent of retail growth to be accommodated in the future.

To view the Cambridge sub-region retail study, please select from the links below:

Alternatively, volume 1 of the retail study can be purchased at a cost of £50 (not including postage and packing), and the appendices can be purchased separately at a cost of £100 (not including postage and packing). Please telephone 01223 457200 for more details.

October 2009 update

Since the study was originally published in October 2008, a number of technical discrepancies have been found and amendments have been made.

These include some changes to the forecast figures for additional retail floor-space in the sub-region, but these do not affect the conclusions of the study.

GVA Grimley have issued a note of changes to explain these amendments.

Retail and Leisure Study Update - RD/E/130

The Cambridge Retail and Leisure Update 2013 [PDF, 6.2MB] provides an evidence base to inform the strategic options and development management policies set out within the City's emerging Local Plan, which will cover the period to 2031.

City Centre Capacity Study - RD/E/120

The primary purpose of the Cambridge City Centre Capacity Study [PDF, 12.3MB]  is to examine the capacity of Cambridge city centre to meet the needs of the district and the wider sub-region in the period to 2031. The study will form part of the evidence base for the emerging Local Plan.

Strategic Flood Risk Assessment RD/CC/150

Read the Strategic flood risk assessment page.

Cambridge Northern Fringe East viability study - RD/SS/030

The development potential of the Cambridge Northern Fringe East, which includes land around the sewage works, Cowley Road industrial units, the former Cowley Road Park and Ride site, and land at Chesterton Sidings, has been extensively reviewed in the past.

In January 2008, Roger Tym and Partners were appointed to carry out a study to review previous reports for the development of the site, identify key issues, define potential development options and assess the feasibility of likely projects.

Work on the study was guided by representatives of Cambridge City Council, Cambridgeshire Horizons, Cambridgeshire County Council, South Cambridgesire District Council, Anglian Water and Network Rail. You can download the Cambridge Northern Fringe East - Viability of Planning Options Report.

Details of additional studies will be made available on this page as they become available.

The Decarbonising Cambridge Study - RD/CC/250

Cambridge City Council has made a commitment to an 89 per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2050, as set out in the adopted Climate Change Strategy. There are many ways in which this target can be achieved, and planning for new development in Cambridge will have a considerable role to play. As such, we are looking to ensure that all new development in Cambridge contributes to the reduction of emissions.

In order to develop such policies, national planning policy requires us to have an evidence-based understanding of the local feasibility and potential for renewable and low carbon technologies to supply new development in the city. In addition, national policy also allows for the development of an evidence base to support local policies requiring new developments to be built to specific standards of sustainable design and construction, for example the Code for Sustainable Homes and BREEAM standards. The Decarbonising Cambridge Study forms part of this evidence base.

The study, which was carried out for us by Element Energy and Terence O'Rourke, is primarily a technical study, the aims of which were:

  • the production of a heat map to determine which areas of Cambridge may be suitable for the development of district heat networks
  • an assessment of the potential for various decentralised renewable and low carbon technologies in the Cambridge area, including biomass, wind and microgeneration technologies such as solar panels
  • an assessment of the viability of achieving different levels of sustainability standards, such as the Code for Sustainable Homes and BREEAM in order to inform policy development
  • the consideration of policy options to inform the development of climate change policies as part of the council's planning policy documents.

The study was approved for publication at a meeting of the council's Development Plan Steering Sub-Committee in September 2010. To view a copy of the study, please select the link below:

Cambridge Cluster at 50 study - RD/E/060

In May 2010 EEDA commissioned the Cambridge Cluster at 50 study to analyse existing data and consult with businesses and other key stakeholders about the Cambridge economy, 50 years on from the formation of the Cambridge Cluster. The aims of the report were to:

  • better understand the performance of the Cambridge economy currently (including the impacts of the recession), and the factors that underpin and explain this;
  • understand long-term opportunities for and threats to the Cambridge economy, taking into account changes in government policy and the different aspirations of new generations of Cambridge-based businesses and residents;
  • understand the potential synergies and conflicts that exist in relation to Cambridge's different economic roles, both now and looking forward;
  • examine the constraints to economic growth - infrastructure, workforce, spatial, attitudes, institutional - and distil what might be done to address these; and
  • understand - in broad terms - the spatial implications of the above.

To view a copy of the report, please select the following link:

Surface Water Management Plan - RD/CC/170

We have produced a Surface Water Management Plan for Cambridge and Milton. It provides evidence for developing new planning policies and will also be a material consideration in the determination of planning applications.

The information contained within the assessment is also used for emergency planning purposes and as a starting point for the strategic surface water flood risk management of Cambridge.

Population, Housing and Employment Forecasts Technical Reports

In May 2012 Cambridge City Council produced a technical paper that pulls together various sources of evidence and information used to generate options exploring how many new homes and jobs need to be provided in Cambridge to 2031.
Housing and Employment Provision: Draft Technical Background Paper [PDF] (RD/STRAT/070)

In April 2013 Cambridgeshire County Council produced a technical report looking at population, housing and employment forecasts for the County. This document projected population, homes and jobs growth to 2031 and informed the updated Strategic Housing Market Assessment.
Population, Housing and Employment Forecasts 2013 [PDF] (RD/STRAT/080)

Memorandum of Cooperation - RD/STRAT/100

The Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Memorandum of Co-operation has been produced by the local authorities to support the development of a coherent and comprehensive growth strategy across Cambridgeshire & Peterborough. It has been developed in response to the removal of the statutory strategic planning tier.

Student Accommodation - Affordable Housing Financial Contributions Viability Study - RD/H/340

The Student Accommodation - Affordable Housing Financial Contributions Viability Study [PDF, 0.9MB]  was created to inform the Council’s on-going work with regard to the potential for introducing an affordable housing contribution for new student accommodation development in the City.

Small Sites Affordable Housing Viability Study - RD/H/320

The Small Sites Affordable Housing Viability Study [PDF, 1.5MB] was completed in 2013 to inform the Council's development of affordable housing policy. It considered the lowering of thresholds for affordable housing.

Research into Houses In Multiple Occupation in Cambridge - Research Findings - RD/H/470

The Research into Houses In Multiple Occupation in Cambridge - Research Findings Report [PDF, 1.2MB] was commissioned to examine the conditions and issues experienced by residents of housing in multiple occupation within Cambridge.

Inner Green Belt Boundary studies

The council has carried out a broad appraisal of the inner green belt boundary areas in the context of recent land releases, and how those releases have affected the revised inner green belt boundary. This appraisal was undertaken in May 2012 and sits alongside the Local Plan - Towards 2031 Issues and Options Report (June 2012).

A joint review of the Inner Green Belt Boundary around Cambridge was undertaken in autumn 2012 by officers at Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council.

Its purpose is to provide an up-to-date evidence base for both councils' new Local Plans, in particular helping the councils reach a view on whether there are specific areas of land that could be considered for release from the green belt and allocated for development to meet identified needs, without significant harm to the green belt.

It draws on and reviews the 2002 Inner Green Belt Study prepared by Cambridge City Council and builds upon and is consistent with the May 2012 Inner Green Belt Boundary Appraisal.

Gypsy and Traveller provision

In 2011 a review of the 2006 Gypsy and Traveller Accommodation Needs Assessment was undertaken.

The council has undertaken an assessment of sites for Gypsy and Traveller provision.

Hotel Study - RD/E/150

The council has undertaken a study of supply and future demand for hotel provision in the Cambridge area.

Public house study - RD/CSF/160

The council has undertaken a study of public houses in the City of Cambridge.

Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire Sustainable Development Strategy Review (November 2012) - RD/STRAT/040

This document forms part of the evidence base for the Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire Local Plan Reviews. It aims to review what sustainable development means in the context of both districts and to ensure that the sustainability of different broad spatial options are assessed.

Issues and Options 2 technical documents

Issues and Options 2: Part one - RD/LP/170

The following technical document has been prepared by Cambridge City Council and South Cambridge District Council for the edge-of city-sites as part of the Issues and Options Stage 2 joint consultation on Development Strategy and Site Options on the Edge of Cambridge. The sites assessed are those that were submitted to both councils as part of their call for sites when preparing their respective Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessments (SHLAA) along with any land identified through the new green belt review as fulfilling green belt purposes to a lesser degree.

The full technical assessments are contained in the Site Assessments for Edge of Cambridge Sites document. The outcome of the technical assessments of all sites in each broad location around the edge of the city have been brought together in this technical document.

Issues and Options 2, Part One: Technical Document

Issues and Options 2: Part two - RD/LP/260

This document sets out the methodology for the assessment of the potential sites to be allocated in the Cambridge Local Plan Towards 2031. It also contains the full assessments of all 34 sites within the Cambridge city boundary that are considered to be suitable for allocation for either residential, mixed use, employment, university/college and residential mooring development.

Technical Background Document – Part 2 Supplement 2013 - RD/LP/310

The Technical Background Document - Part 2 Supplement 2013 is a supplement to the Issues and Options 2 Part 2 - Site Options Within Cambridge Technical Background Document. It is part of the audit trail setting out the origination and evaluation of sites brought forward for allocation in the Draft Submission Plan. The full audit trail to date includes: The identification of sites through the SHLAA, May 2012; Site and issues raised through the Issues and Option 1 stage of the Plan preparation, July 2012; The detailed assessment of sites in Issues and Options 2, Part 2 Site Options Within Cambridge – January 2013: Technical Background Document - Part 2; The Issues and Options 2 consultation and responses on specific sites. This supplement provides a full technical assessment of any additional sites or sites on where there have been significant changes since Issues and Options 2.

Major sub-regional facilities in the Cambridge area: Review of evidence and site options (January 2013) - RD/CSF/020

The purpose of this paper is to consider the evidence available regarding the need for major sub-regional facilities in the Cambridge area, and explore whether any site options warrant consultation in the second issues and options consultations for the Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire District Council Local Plans.

Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council Infrastructure Delivery Study 2012 - RD/T/010

Produced by Peter Brett associates on behalf of both councils, the Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council Infrastructure Delivery Study was adopted to the evidence base for the Cambridge CIL and the Cambridge Local Plan Review at Development Plan Scrutiny Sub Committee on 11 September 2012.

Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council Infrastructure Delivery Study Update 2013 - RD/T/020

Produced by Peter Brett associates on behalf of both councils, the Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council  Infrastructure Delivery Study Update 2013 [PDF, 2.3MB] was adopted to the evidence base for the Cambridge CIL and the Cambridge Local Plan Review at Development Plan Scrutiny Sub Committee on 9 July 2013.

Cambridge City Council Local Plan Review - Viability: Community Infrastructure Levy Viability Assessment - RD/T/200

Produced by Dixon Searle LLP on behalf of the Council the Cambridge Community Infrastructure Levy Viability Assessment was adopted to the evidence base for the Cambridge CIL and the Cambridge Local Plan Review at Environment Scrutiny Committee on 12 March 2013.

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