Hertfordshire councils gearing up for growth

Hertfordshire’s growth over the next 12 to 15 years comes with a significant infrastructure requirement, which a new study has found will cost up to £6 billion.

The 11 councils in Hertfordshire are planning for the delivery of around 100,000 new homes in the county by 2031, and have commissioned a comprehensive study of the likely cost of the infrastructure that this development will need – such as transport, schools and healthcare facilities.

The key findings of the Hertfordshire Infrastructure and Funding Prospectus 2018-2031 (HIFP) are that by 2031:

  • There will be around 100,000 new homes – an increase of more than 20 per cent of the current total housing stock.
  • There will be at least 107,000 more people living in Hertfordshire – and it is estimated this number could be closer to 175,000.
  • There will be an extra 20 per cent of traffic on all roads. However, our Local Transport Plan (LTP4) is prioritising pedestrians, cyclists and public transport – key to encouraging less reliance on cars.
  • Of the projected total infrastructure bill of nearly £6bn, only £1.4bn has already been identified or is being raised through funded schemes.
  • At present, it is estimated that the contributions from developers and land-owners will cover less than 20 per cent of this £6bn bill.

As with other parts of the UK, Herts is facing up to the challenge of how to accommodate a growing population. Hertfordshire’s local authorities have set up a Growth Board to work together to support the delivery of good, sustainable growth in the county.

It will help councils plan where we need to provide new infrastructure, and work with the wider development industry, which will provide employment sites and facilities for residents.

Councillor David Williams, Leader of Hertfordshire County Council and chairman of Hertfordshire Growth Board, said: “We’ll see significant growth in Hertfordshire over the next decade or so, and we want to help our communities flourish and fulfil their potential. We recognise the imperative to grow our economy and ensure that we have thriving, sustainable communities.

“Hertfordshire is a county of opportunity – an attractive place in which to live. We have some of the best schools in the country, have low crime levels and numerous major companies are based here. But we have to make sure future generations can afford to live and work in the county.

“Our vision is to focus on supporting the development of sustainable communities – where families can live, learn and work all in one place. Good growth means places that are well designed to help families stay healthy, safe and enjoy a good quality of life.

“The Growth Board will use this prospectus to prioritise infrastructure schemes, to secure support from central government and support a funding strategy.”

To find out more about how plans are being made for growth in Hertfordshire, visit  Herts County Council’s website

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