Sevenoaks District Draft Local Plan Consultation July 2018

Document Section Draft Local Plan July 2018 Ensuring Well-Connected Communities are Supported by Appropriate Infrastructure Viability Policy 7 - Transport & Infrastructure [View all comments on this section]
Comment ID DLPP1121
Respondent Highways England (Heather Arch… [View all comments by this respondent]
Response Date 01 Oct 2018
Current Status Accepted

Thank you for consulting us on the Regulation 18 consultation for the Sevenoaks District Council
Local Plan 2033.
On behalf of the Secretary of State for Transport,. Highways England is responsible for managing and
operating a safe and efficient Strategic Road Network (SRN), i.e. the Trunk Road and Motorway
Network in England, as laid down in Department for Transport (DfT) Circular 0212013 (Planning and ,
The Strategic Road Network).
We are a key delivery partner for sustainable development promoted through the plan-led system,
and as a statutory consultee we have a duty to cooperate with local authorities to support the
preparation and implementation of development plan documents. Highways England is aware of the
relationship between development planning and the transport network, and we are mindful of the
effects that planning decisions may have on the operation of the SRN and associated junctions. We
cannot be expected to cater for unconstrained traffic growth generated by new developments, and we
therefore encourage policies and proposals which incorporate measures to reduce traffic generation
at source and encourage more sustainable travel behaviour.
We wish to draw your attention to Highways England's document 'The Strategic Road Network,
Planning for the Future: A guide to working with Highways England on planning matters'(September
2015). This document sets out how Highways England intends to work with local planning authorities
and developers to support the preparation of sound documents which enable the delivery of
sustainable development. The document indicates that Highways England will review and provide
comments on any amendments to local plans proposed by local planning authorities that have the
potential to affect any part of the SRN.
We do not consider it appropriate to state our support or objection to particular proposals, therefore
instead this letter clarifies our views on a number of aspects of the Local Plan primarily focused on
the potential impacts of all sites on the SRN and highlights junctions which may experience
significant increases in traffic. This letter will also consider the evidence base used to understand the
impact of development and the potential funding of any infrastructure schemes that are required. Our
interest in local plans is specifically focussed on the council's approach to highway and transport
matters in relation to regeneration and new development. Given the key SRN junctions and mainlines
be submitted as a Strategic Transport Assessment. It is therefore unclear at this stage whether it will
be possible to sufficiently mitigate the impact of the allocated development locations or whether the
impact will be too great to feasibly ensure that the network operates within capacity at the end of the
plan period. Until this has been submitted, Highways England are not in a position to offer any
detailed comments at this point in time. We advise that the Strategic Transport Assessment is sent to
Highways England for consultation as soon as possible.
The Strategic Transport Assessment that is currently being formed should be in accordance with
Circular 02/2013. We require suitable measures to be considered and evidenced in the Local Plan to
manage demand of future traffic levels and growth. Highways England expect the promoters of
development to put forward initiatives that manage down the traffic impact of proposals to support the
promotion of sustainable transport and the development of accessible sites. The transport related
evidence base needs to be sufficiently appropriate, up-to-date, transparent and robust, such that it
can be deemed sound. The evidence base should cover an appropriate area; for transport this may
be beyond the borough boundary. The evidence base should also ensure that it assesses the
individual and cumulative impacts of developments within the study area over the whole plan period
and, as necessary, at various intermediate dates to identify any tipping points when action will be
We welcome the opportunity to respond to the Sevenoaks Draft Local Plan Consultation and look
forward to continuing to participate in future consultations and discussions.