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New planning gain system is born

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Developer Gallagher Estates has been awarded planning consent for 1,400 homes at Broughton Gate on the east of Milton Keynes, an agreement that sees the birth of a new form of planning gain.

Milton Keynes Partnership released the consent, which is the first in the UK, with the developer agreeing to 'trail blaze' an infrastructure tariff - a new form of Section 106 agreement that will help fund the infrastructure needed for growth.

It is intended to enhance contributions from developers by ensuring long-term funding through a fixed rate tariff that relates directly to the number of homes being built. Some refer to the deal as a form of 'roof tax'.

The process is hoped to continue throughout the Urban Development Area, with similar contributions from developers of over 15,000 new homes.

Jane Hamilton, chief operating officer of Milton Keynes Partnership, said: 'At the moment these agreements are usually put together in a piecemeal way. We have looked at the big picture. This is a much more strategic approach and lets us plan properly for the future.'

The Milton Keynes Partnership (MKP) is in charge of growth, development and investment in the city.

The MKP was created in June 2004, and is comprised of English Partnerships, Milton Keynes Council, and representatives from Local Strategic Partnerships as well as independent representation.

by Rose Green

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