Publication Local Plan, Chapter 6: Efficient and coordinated use of land

Creating a fairer Salford by:

  • Maximising the efficient and effective use of land in all neighbourhoods, helping to minimise the loss of green areas and maximise opportunities to make trips by public transport, cycling and walking

6.1 If sustainable development is to be achieved, it will be important to use the city’s land and resources in an efficient and coordinated way. This will avoid more sites being developed than is necessary, and ensure that development supports the success of the wider area and does not compromise development options on other sites.

Efficient use of land

6.2 The efficient use of land will be particularly important for supporting economic growth, ensuring that the best possible use can be made of the finite land resources within the city. This will help to minimise the potential need for the development of greenfield and Green Belt land, or other sensitive sites.

6.3 The density of development is a key aspect of using land efficiently, supporting efforts to minimise the need to travel and maximise the number of journeys made by more sustainable modes of transport such as walking, cycling and public transport. However, it will be equally important to ensure that other structures, infrastructure, open space, car parking, etc, are also integrated into a site as effectively as possible. Low-rise non-residential developments such as single storey retail units can represent an inefficient use of land, and in some cases it should be possible to increase densities by accommodating residential accommodation above them, particularly in the most accessible locations.

Policy EF1 - Efficient use of land

Developments shall use land efficiently. All parts of a site shall have a clear and positive purpose. 

Support will be given to the use of suitable previously developed land and appropriate opportunities to remediate despoiled, degraded, derelict, contaminated or unstable land.   

The density of a development shall:

  1. Respond to the local context, character and distinctiveness; and
  2. Reflect the accessibility of the site:
    1. By public transport, cycling and walking; and
    2. To public services, community facilities, amenity and recreation provision.

The highest density development shall be in the most accessible locations. Proposed improvements to the accessibility of a site will be taken into account in implementing this policy, but only where there is a high probability of their delivery and long-term retention. 

Residential densities shall meet the requirements in Policy H3. 

Where low-rise non-residential development is proposed, in order to assist in maximising the efficient use of land, the applicant shall demonstrate that positive consideration has been given to incorporating residential uses above, where this is appropriate to the design context, the function of the surrounding area and the need to ensure that residents would have a good level of amenity.

Co-ordinated development

6.4 It is important to ensure that development on one site does not unnecessarily constrain what can be achieved on other potential development sites, as this could lead to the inefficient use of land, poor quality design, or land use conflicts. The possible impacts on other sites will therefore be important factors to be considered by developers when locating and designing their schemes. This principle will also be applied to large sites that are likely to be brought forward by more than one developer.

6.5 Whilst masterplans and development frameworks will not be required in the majority of cases, they may be necessary in some locations to ensure that development is properly co-ordinated and contributes to high quality neighbourhoods. This will be especially important for coordinating infrastructure delivery. It is anticipated that organisations other than the city council may produce masterplans/frameworks. However, where this occurs, it will be important for the city council to be involved at all stages of their production so as to ensure that the masterplans/frameworks properly meet policy requirements and to minimise the potential for delays in determining any associated planning applications. The content of the masterplan/framework is to be agreed with the city council, and its scope should address the relevant issues having regard to the individual needs of the site.

6.6 If any sites in Salford are allocated in the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework, then they will, by definition [1], be of strategic significance. Hence, it will be important for each of them to be subject to a masterplan in accordance with the following policy.

Policy EF2 - Co-ordinated development

Development will not be permitted if it would unacceptably hamper or reduce the development options for adjacent sites or the wider area. Development must make provision for, and be phased with, supporting infrastructure, facilities, and appropriate environmental mitigation. 

Development on individual sites will only be required to be guided by a masterplan or framework for the wider area where there is a need to:

  1. Demonstrate that development options on other sites would not be unacceptably reduced;
  2. Secure consistency in layout and/or design across more than one site;
  3. Accommodate and/or fund infrastructure when this would not be possible by viewing individual sites in isolation; or
  4. Ensure that the cumulative impacts of development in the area are properly assessed;

Where a masterplan/framework is produced by someone other than the city council:

  1. The boundaries and scope of the masterplan/framework area shall be agreed with the city council at an early stage in the production process; and
  2. The final version of the masterplan/framework shall be endorsed by the city council.

The production process for the masterplan/framework shall:

  1. Ensure the proper consultation of the local community and other stakeholders within and adjoining the masterplan/framework area, meeting the principles set out in Policy F1;
  2. Seek to maximise social value and inclusion in any resulting development in accordance with Policy F2; and
  3. Identify early in the process whether the scale and nature of the development proposed within the masterplan/framework area is likely to need to be subject to an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and, if so and as far as practicable, use the EIA process to guide the development of the masterplan and identify opportunities to improve it.

No development will be permitted on sites allocated for development through the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework until a masterplan or Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) has been developed with the local community and other stakeholders, and endorsed, or in the case of an SPD adopted, by the city council.


6.7 The main indicators that will be used to monitor this chapter are: 

Indicator Baseline position Target
Proportion of new dwellings on  previously developed land 92% of all dwellings completed between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2019 in Salford  were on previously developed land [2] 85%


[1] Section 334(5) of the Greater London Authority Act 1999, which now also applies to Greater Manchester as a result of paragraph 3(1)(a) of The Greater Manchester Combined Authority (Functions and Amendment) Order 2016, requires that the spatial development strategy must deal only with matters which are of strategic importance to Greater Manchester

[2] Salford City Council (June 2019) Residential development monitoring: 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019, page 14

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