Publication: Pre-Submission Gloucester City Plan

Pre-Submission City Plan

Policy B2: Safeguarding employment sites and buildings

Employment sites and buildings will be safeguarded for B class employment uses and change of use/redevelopment to non-B class uses will generally be resisted. Such proposals will only be supported where the following criteria are met:

  1. The site or premise is redundant or no longer fit for purpose or capable of meeting employment needs; and
  2. The proposal would not adversely impact on the continued use of adjacent employment uses; or
  3. The proposal would bring significant benefits to the local economy and/or community that would demonstrably outweigh the loss of employment land.

3.2.12 Gloucester is a small urban authority with a limited supply of employment land. Evidence from the City Council's Employment Land Review (2019), Economic Growth Strategy (2019) and Strategy Options for the City of Gloucester (2017) point to an excellent supply of existing employment sites and premises within the city, which overall are well occupied and meets the needs of and is attractive to the business community. The city provides a good range of different forms of employment space, from high profile business parks through to lower quality options, but which nevertheless provides the range of quality, type, size and price of accommodation to provide for the needs of businesses.

3.2.13 Gloucester is a primary focus for economic activity in the county and it is important this in maintained. In order to achieve this, existing sites and premises are protected from redevelopment to alternative uses, unless the proposal can meet the criteria outlined in the above policy. Where opportunities exist, the City Council will support proposals to intensify and improve the quality and offer of existing employment sites - see Policy B3 below.

3.2.14 For the avoidance of doubt, this policy covers sites and buildings currently in employment use, as well as extant consents. This is because the existing urban capacity of employment land is an important component in meeting the quantum of employment land required in the JCS.

3.2.15 In demonstrating compliance with criteria a) of this policy, the City Council will normally expect the submission of a Marketing Appraisal, prepared by a suitably qualified person, demonstrating that the site or premises have been marketed for a reasonable period of time, details of any expressions of interest received and expert opinion of why the site was not acquired/leased.

3.2.16 For the avoidance of doubt, this policy applies to all employment falling into Class B of the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987 (as amended) including Class B1 (a, b and c), B2 and B8. It applies to all existing employment land and premises, consented employment land and premises, and allocations made in the GCP.