Property development
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COMMENT  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Council development levy changes are insufficiently evidenced and don't meet city infrastructure needs

Exeter City Council and Liveable Exeter partners impose faulty typology driven by policy objectives while ignoring new local plan, evidence base and statutory funding statement and excluding residential and retail charges from review.

NEWSWIRE

Exeter in brief - January 2023

Keeping you up to date with local news that matters.

, updated

Exeter City Futures falsely claims development fund documents disclosed under FOI legislation

ANALYSIS  ⁄  DEMOCRACY & GOVERNANCE

Exeter City Futures falsely claims development fund documents disclosed under FOI legislation

Senior council director puts company on collision course with Information Commissioner's Office as significant governance failings emerge after councillors and public kept in dark over Liveable Exeter financing scheme proposals.

Exeter City Living put council at "significant financial risk" after £2.2 million loss in first two years

ANALYSIS  ⁄  DEMOCRACY & GOVERNANCE

Exeter City Living put council at "significant financial risk" after £2.2 million loss in first two years

Missing business plan, lack of transparency and conflicts of interest among senior council directors prompt board resignations and governance review at council-owned and funded company.

NEWSWIRE

Exeter in brief - December 2022

Local news that matters

, updated

University holds public consultation on 1,700 bed West Park redevelopment design

NEWS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

University holds public consultation on 1,700 bed West Park redevelopment design

Outline plans to demolish 30 buildings and construct 50,000m2 of student accommodation on fifteen acre Streatham campus site did not comply with university or council environmental policies.

Heavitree Road developer gets sixth pitch for student/co-living complex

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Heavitree Road developer gets sixth pitch for student/co-living complex

Eight design iterations, six council meetings, four consultation rounds and two deferrals combine to impede public participation in planning process on key Liveable Exeter site and increase chances of decision being overturned at appeal.

Flood risk threatens to sink Haven Banks redevelopment plans

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Flood risk threatens to sink Haven Banks redevelopment plans

Proposals for 434 rental units accommodating up to 1,167 people on 1.7 hectare Liveable Exeter site would deliver extreme housing densities that deny amenity to prospective occupants while inflicting significant impacts on existing residents.

Council borrowing nearly triples in three years as property acquisition and development loans mount

ANALYSIS  ⁄  ECONOMY & ENTERPRISE

Council borrowing nearly triples in three years as property acquisition and development loans mount

Freedom of information request reveals five paragraph "outline business plan" for £55 million Guildhall shopping centre investment.

First Exeter "co-living" block comes on stream with rooms at £946pcm+

NEWS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

First Exeter "co-living" block comes on stream with rooms at £946pcm+

Even "affordable" rooms in six storey 133-unit Gladstone Road block would leave many local key workers living below minimum income threshold.

Council paves way for 186-bed "co-living" block in Summerland Street

NEWS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Council paves way for 186-bed "co-living" block in Summerland Street

Freedom of information request reveals intended scale of development after executive committee takes decision behind closed doors.

Do Exeter Labour election campaign claims stand up to scrutiny? Part III: Climate & environment

ANALYSIS  ⁄  CLIMATE & ENVIRONMENT

Do Exeter Labour election campaign claims stand up to scrutiny? Part III: Climate & environment

The third in our 2022 local elections series examines Exeter Labour claims about climate crisis leadership, renewable energy, recycling, retrofitting and development standards as well as decisions to scrap council and city decarbonisation goals.

Do Exeter Labour election campaign claims stand up to scrutiny? Part I: Exeter's housing crisis

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Do Exeter Labour election campaign claims stand up to scrutiny? Part I: Exeter's housing crisis

The first instalment in our 2022 local elections coverage examines Exeter Labour claims related to the housing crisis overtaking the city.

Why does Exeter City Council evade public scrutiny of Exeter City Living property development decisions?

ANALYSIS  ⁄  DEMOCRACY & GOVERNANCE

Why does Exeter City Council evade public scrutiny of Exeter City Living property development decisions?

Significant decisions concerning the council-owned company are being taken in secret despite transparency legislation and assurances when it was created, with governance and scrutiny arrangements also potentially putting the council at risk.

£55 million Guildhall shopping centre decision may breach local government transparency rules

ANALYSIS  ⁄  DEMOCRACY & GOVERNANCE

£55 million Guildhall shopping centre decision may breach local government transparency rules

Exeter City Council decision to purchase and redevelop shopping centre may be unlawful, ineffective and subject to judicial review, increasing already significant commercial investment risks.

Decision to send council CEO and director to work for Exeter City Futures is "disservice to citizens"

ANALYSIS  ⁄  DEMOCRACY & GOVERNANCE

Decision to send council CEO and director to work for Exeter City Futures is "disservice to citizens"

City council disregards governance, risk and conflict of interest issues despite cross-party challenges and conflates decarbonisation agenda with property development financing scheme.

Has the county council learned its lesson?

NOTES & SKETCHES  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Has the county council learned its lesson?

Judging by the “ample space” for greenfield business park and housing development promoted in the “Clean Growth Vision for the West of East Devon” it commissioned from City Science Corporation (an Exeter City Futures sister company) for submission to the East Devon Local Plan consultation, it seems not...

Exeter City Council approves second Harlequins "co-living" block, sealing fate of Paul Street

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Exeter City Council approves second Harlequins "co-living" block, sealing fate of Paul Street

Previously rejected vision will now form basis of "abysmal" and "poorly thought through" Liveable Exeter development of 383 "units of accommodation" with increased proportion of substandard studios but reduced economic value to city.

Prospects improve for pop-up Paris Street and Sidwell Street tenants wanting to stay on development site

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Prospects improve for pop-up Paris Street and Sidwell Street tenants wanting to stay on development site

Council leader Phil Bialyk says it will be "some years" before planned CityPoint redevelopment affects repurposed retail units, and that council "would want" to accommodate artistic and cultural initiatives and independent local businesses "should they wish to remain".

Exeter Digest #5: Second Harlequins "co-living" block? - Arts centre opens despite CityPoint threat - City of Culture bid - Parliamentary boundary review

In the fifth edition of our newsletter we review key stories from the past few weeks and announce the return of our community journalism training courses and workshops.

Harlequins developer plans to scrap hotel to build second "co-living" block on shopping centre site

NEWS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Harlequins developer plans to scrap hotel to build second "co-living" block on shopping centre site

Existing planning approval will be factor in decision to return to earlier, rejected, vision which would mean 378 studios and "cluster flat" rooms along Paul Street.

Positive Light Projects opens community arts centre despite CityPoint redevelopment threat

ANALYSIS  ⁄  ARTS & CULTURE

Positive Light Projects opens community arts centre despite CityPoint redevelopment threat

Parts of Exeter city centre are experiencing an unplanned renaissance as small shops and cultural venues move in to fill empty units on Paris Street and Sidwell Street, but uncertainty remains as the council still plans to demolish and redevelop.

University drops environmental standards for huge student flats development with council approval

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

University drops environmental standards for huge student flats development with council approval

University of Exeter and Exeter City Council both ignore own policies in plans to demolish 30 buildings and construct 50,000m2 of new student accommodation, telling us more about their priorities than their climate leadership claims.

Developer plans to convert retail units in Exeter city centre block to additional student bedrooms

NEWS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Developer plans to convert retail units in Exeter city centre block to additional student bedrooms

Conversion of five of eleven shop/leisure units at The Depot in Cheeke Street would add nineteen rooms to existing 715 bedrooms in monolithic PBSA.

Council pushes back on Liveable Exeter Place Board scrutiny following membership change

ANALYSIS  ⁄  DEMOCRACY & GOVERNANCE

Council pushes back on Liveable Exeter Place Board scrutiny following membership change

Exeter City Council has responded to an enquiry about disproportionate Church of England representation on the Liveable Exeter Place Board by accusing Exeter Observer of promoting a "partisan narrative" and claiming our public interest reporting "bears no resemblance to fact".

Exeter Science Park STEMM "grow-out building" construction begins

NEWS  ⁄  ECONOMY & ENTERPRISE

Exeter Science Park STEMM "grow-out building" construction begins

A new specialist centre for fast-growth Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths & Medicine businesses will be completed by November 2021.

University plans to demolish 30 buildings to construct ~50,000m2 of new student accommodation

NEWS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

University plans to demolish 30 buildings to construct ~50,000m2 of new student accommodation

Permission sought for 1,250 new bedrooms on fifteen acre Streatham campus Clydesdale and Birks development site, half as large again as 1,200 bedroom East Park development.

Renewed permission sought for Longbrook Street student block

NEWS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Renewed permission sought for Longbrook Street student block

Developers are seeking to renew previously-granted planning permission for an eight storey 108-bed student accommodation block on the site of the King Billy public house.

First Liveable Exeter homes are substandard "warehousing for people" which is student accommodation "in all but name"

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

First Liveable Exeter homes are substandard "warehousing for people" which is student accommodation "in all but name"

Harlequins shopping centre redevelopment approved by Exeter City Council includes 251 co-living units in seven storey tower block despite widespread opposition from conservation charities and community campaigners who have since appealed to the Secretary of State to call in the decision.

Hospital creates parking for 200 cars despite city climate crisis goals

NEWS  ⁄  CLIMATE & ENVIRONMENT

Hospital creates parking for 200 cars despite city climate crisis goals

Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital says new parking "temporary" but no end-date given in planning application and no hard evidence of need provided.

Exeter City Council executive members take direct control of city planning decisions

ANALYSIS  ⁄  DEMOCRACY & GOVERNANCE

Exeter City Council executive members take direct control of city planning decisions

Council's executive now possesses majority on city planning committee, with council leader and planning portfolio holder also included despite national guidance, offering basis to challenge decisions and increasing democratic deficit.

Unelected Liveable Exeter Place Board created to oversee city from the shadows

ANALYSIS  ⁄  DEMOCRACY & GOVERNANCE

Unelected Liveable Exeter Place Board created to oversee city from the shadows

Exeter City Council has convened an unelected board that meets in private, does not publish its discussions or decisions and is taking responsibility for major policies which will determine Exeter's future.

Exeter's first "zero carbon" housing development includes 96 car parking spaces for 40 homes

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Exeter's first "zero carbon" housing development includes 96 car parking spaces for 40 homes

Exeter City Council has approved plans to develop land at Pinhoe with a parking ratio of 2.4 cars per household as part of an "exemplar scheme for future residential development in the city" while accepting that zero carbon construction comes "at a cost to the provision of affordable housing".

Echoes of Exeter's Roman past reveal risks to city's future vision

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Echoes of Exeter's Roman past reveal risks to city's future vision

The unexpected discovery of Roman remains on Exeter's bus station redevelopment site suggests significant risks may also exist for the adjacent Citypoint regeneration scheme.

Mount Radford Lawn development proposals conflict with St Leonards community vision

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Mount Radford Lawn development proposals conflict with St Leonards community vision

Exeter Deaf Academy hopes to sell a school playing field to developers who plan to build luxury homes. Local residents have other ideas about how best to use the land. A dispute is looming over an historic green space driven by prospective profit from planning gain.

Clifton Hill sports centre – the background

ANALYSIS  ⁄  PLANNING & PLACE

Clifton Hill sports centre – the background

Storm Emma met the Beast from the East and dumped a huge amount of snow on the roof of Exeter's Clifton Hill sports centre, setting off a chain reaction which has ignited two campaigns and put Exeter City Council's approaches to competence and openness into sharp focus.

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