What Transport Development Planning do

What is development control?

Broadly, development control is the process that regulates the development and use of land, involving the granting or refusing of applications for planning permission by the county council or the district and borough councils.

What do the councils do?

The 11 district and borough councils in Surrey give planning permission on a whole range of developments, including residential, office, industrial, and retail proposals, and are the planning authority in that respect. The county council itself gives planning permission to a rather more limited range of developments, including minerals extraction, waste and county-controlled schools. Planning applications by members of the general public are therefore almost always submitted to the district and borough councils.

What is the role of Transport Development Planning?

The planning authorities consult Surrey County Council as the Highway Authority on the highway and transportation issues relating to development proposals. Transport Development Planning then:

  • advises the planning authorities accordingly
  • advises applicants, prior to submission of a planning application, on the likely transportation requirements of their proposals
  • recommends to the planning authority whether there are transportation reasons why planning applications should be changed before they are granted permission, granted permission with conditions, or refused.

How do we operate?

When consulted by the planning authority, Transport Development Planning decides whether or not there may be transportation concerns arising from development proposals.

After careful consideration, usually involving site visits and technical work, we provide a formal recommendation to the planning authority. This advice is then taken into account when the planning authority determines the application.

We undertake to make a formal response to the planning authority on at least 75% of such applications within 21 days, to enable them to deal with the applications within their own published target time-scales.

Some applications need a significant amount of technical work and may also need further information from the applicant before such work can be completed. In these cases an extension of the time limit for a formal response may be required.

How we can help you?

In consultation with the planning authorities, Transport Development Planning will assist applicants by suggesting ways of overcoming possible transportation concerns. This may be prior to the submission of a formal application, in which case it is known as pre-planning advice, or in relation to the application itself.

We will explain to the planning authority and applicant both informally and in our formal response, the reasons for a recommendation of refusal or the imposition of conditions on any permission granted.

What do we take into account?

Road safety is the primary concern, but in addition, concerns relating to traffic congestion, and wider transportation policy issues are included in our assessment. These wider considerations include the need to reduce reliance on the private car.

We always refer to Central Government planning policy guidance in the NPPF (National Planning Policy Framework). At county level we refer to the strategies and objectives of the current Surrey Transport Plan. In addition, we also consider the Surrey boroughs and districts saved Local Plan transport policies, or if adopted, the more recent Local Development Framework transport policies.

The technical background on which we rely to support our views includes all relevant highways and technical advice provided by central government, particularly the Department for Transport and Department for Communities & Local Government. Advice will be given to planning authorities and applicants on request as to which documents in particular have had a specific bearing in the consideration of individual applications.

For a copy of the recently adopted Healthy Streets for Surrey, email the relevant borough or district inbox from the contact list.

Our commitment to quality

We provide an efficient and flexible service to the public, to developers and to the planning authorities in advising on the highway and transportation issues in development control.

Scrutinising applications for licensing of goods vehicles

Businesses who want to operate goods vehicles over 3.5 tonnes must obtain an Operator's Licence, (known as an 'O' licence) from the Traffic Commissioner for the South East and Metropolitan Traffic Area. Every operator must have an operating centre, which is the place where their goods vehicle(s) are kept when not in use. We offer advice to operators and to the public about the suitability of operating centres.

Surrey County Council receives a summary of each application for new or additional operating centres. We consider these applications and if any seem unsuitable because of the location of the depot, because of road safety concerns or environmental concerns, including loss of amenity to the public, we may object. Where possible, we resolve problems by asking for the use of conditions on the granting of a licence.

Where it is not possible to agree conditions with the applicant, and the Traffic Commissioner calls a public inquiry, we make a representation at the public inquiry.

New roads built by developers

Following a planning permission for housing development, developers often ask the county council to adopt the new roads they build as public roads. We vet the developer's design and ensure the roads are built to the correct standard before Surrey County Council adopts them as public roads. To do this the developer and the county council enter into a Section 38 agreement. You can find out more information by clicking on the following link Frequently Asked Questions About Adoption of Housing Development Roads.

Development-related highway works

Planning permission for development sometimes require developers to build improvements or alterations to the public highway. Works can include things like roundabouts, right turn lanes, or cycleways. We vet the developer's design and ensure the roadworks are built to the correct standard before the county council inherits them as part of the public highway. To do this the developer and the county council enter into a Section 278 agreement.

You can get more detailed information about the role of Transport Development Planning in the Transportation Development Control Good Practice Guide.

For further information, please contact:

Transport Development Planning, Surrey County Council, 3rd Floor, Quadrant Court, 35 Guildford Road, Woking GU22 7QQ

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