Salford aims for 4.3m sq ft of offices in Local Plan

Salford City Council has reached the next stage of its Local Plan’s journey to adoption, releasing a revised draft version ahead of publication this September.

The city’s strategic objectives for the years to 2037 are for 4.3m sq ft of offices, 6m sq ft of industrial space and a net increase of 32,680 homes, 80% of them on previously developed land.

Feedback is invited up to 22 March on the revised plan. Following publication and submission to Government in 2020, Salford hopes for the plan to be adopted from summer 2021.

The city said that there will be a strong focus on securing social value from development, and there will be an expectation that all developers will sign up to the city mayor’s employment charter.

Salford specifically mentions within its strategic objectives that it wants to increase the proportion of major developments going through a design review process, and that there should be no net reduction in the number of statutorily protected heritage buildings.

Key points spelt out in Salford’s spatial vision include an enhanced role for Ordsall Waterfront as a key, high-density residential-led link between its city centre, abutting Manchester’s core, and Salford Quays; along with the continued development of employment areas at Eccles New Road, Liverpool Street and Cambridge, with masterplans to be produced for each.

In residential, the plan posits that around half of new housing will be delivered in the city centre and Salford Quays, with the main Green Belt incursion expected to be to the north of Irlam station. The spatial vision also talks of increased policy protection for the West Salford Greenway, and nature parks to be developed at the former Swinton waterworks and at Cutacre, Little Hulton, close to Logistics North. In total, more is to be added to Salford’s Green Belt than removed should proposed changes become adopted.

As far as policies linked directly to key development areas go, the development of Greengate Park is set out within the document. With developments such as MediaCityUK expanding, Salford Quays is expected to take around 2.7m sq ft of the office space to be built out over the 20 years, along with 6,750 of the homes required – the second largest proportion of the housing requirements, behind the city centre with 10,460 homes. A Metrolink connection from the Quays to Salford Crescent station is also included.

Of the industrial space required, Port Salford and its extension, as mapped out in the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework, will play a key role.

The plan also offers insight into how Salford sees the building of tourism and culture as vital to its future. Hotels and leisure on the land around the AJ Bell Stadium are to be encouraged, with applicants exempt from impact assessments and other obligations.

The revised draft Plan is available to view online.

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