Howton Road Custom build

Teignbridge District Council has achieved a resolution to grant consent for 20 custom build plot opportunities as part of the NA1 development allocation, on a site to the west of Newton Abbot, at Highweek.

Teignbridge worked in conjunction with George Marshall of Devon County Council to bring forward the planning application. The site is the result of a piece of planning white space that was delivered by realigning a portion of a new link road that borders land allocated in the local plan.

The amended road route left a corner of the field unallocated, which offered an opportunity for Teignbridge DC to develop the opportunity.

Teignbridge has a strong link with custom and self-build, both in being an early adopter of the route and the first authority to instigate a percentage plan, whereby 5% of all developable housing land is allocated for custom and self-build on larger sites. This innovative policy is now known as the Teignbridge Rule, and has become one model for allocating land for custom and self-build homes.

In addition, Council Leader Jeremy Christophers is a keen advocate of the route, and is currently an ambassador for NaCSBA’s Right To Build Task Force. Consequently, the council is fully aware of how custom built homes fits in with current Government policy commitments.

The shape of the site largely dictated the type of housing it could be used for, with a series of terraces and a semi-detached unit planned.

“Using HCA loan funding council officers negotiated the land purchase for realignment of the proposed link road, which enabled both a significant saving in engineering works and a portion of land suitable to provide custom build homes in the district. ,” says Charles Acland, Self-build Officer at Teignbridge District Council.

“Homes England (previously the Homes and Communities Agency)  funding has enabled us to secure land and gain consent for 20 plots, which is great news for those on our self build register,” adds Acland.

As planned, people will be able to buy a plot and a build package from a developer, although as yet Teignbridge is still in discussion with potential developers and remain open to expressions of interest.

In addition to the 20-home custom build site, unlocking 1,000 further homes within the NA1 Houghton Barton will also facilitate the delivery of additional plots for custom and self-build. This is under the Teignbridge Rule, a 5% allocation rule that will result in 50 serviced custom build plots as part of the larger development.

While the council has the option to sell 20-home site outright to developer at this stage, Acland explained he’d prefer it if the council could maintain an interest in it.

“We’re keen to capture learning from this site as it’s a first for Teignbridge, and offers scope to create a showcase development,” he said.
“It offers the opportunity for it to be a design exemplar to establish what can be achieved with custom build, so that we can show future potential buyers and developers what custom build can look like,” he says. “This would be a real benefit to the market, showing buyers and the sector the benefits of custom build as a route to home ownership that really widens the offer and diversifies housing supply.”

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