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Property Development: Floods

Volume 485: debated on Monday 15 December 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what recent representations she has received on the planning guidance announced on 26 November relating to flood protection for new developments; and if she will make a statement. (241504)

I have been asked to reply.

The Long-Term Initiatives for Flood Risk Environments (LiFE) project, which has produced a guide to help planners and architects develop more integrated and sustainable approaches to site design, was funded by DEFRA’s flood risk management innovation fund. This fund was established under the Government’s Making Space for Water flood management strategy to test new and novel ways for managing flood risk in the future that are sustainable and deliver a range of benefits.

Where the sequential approach set out in Government Planning Policy (PPS25) shows that there are no reasonably available sites in areas with a lower probability of flooding and the need for the development outweighs the flood risk, development may, exceptionally, need to go ahead in flood risk areas. In such cases, PPS25 and its accompanying practice guide emphasises the importance of site layout and design in mitigating the impacts of flood risk. The LiFE guide is a useful contribution towards increasing awareness of flood risk management issues and highlights some potential solutions. It does not however replace current planning policy and guidance set out in PPS25 and the accompanying practice guide.