Suffolk Design Project updates

To see the latest updates on the Suffolk Design initiative please view the following project update page.

Invitation to comment on the consultation Suffolk Design: Streets Guide 

A draft of the Street Design: Street Guide is now available to read and you are invited to shape the final version of the document by completing the survey.  Organisations such as yours are being invited to consider the document during a consultation period that will close on 10 February 2021.  A report of the consultation will be published when Suffolk Design: Streets Guide is presented to Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet.

The District, Borough and County Councils of Suffolk have been working to improve the design of new developments through the Suffolk Design initiative. As part of this programme, the County Council commissioned Stantec to produce a new Street Guide to update guidance for residential streets. 

The Streets Guide seeks to draw together national policies, guidance and other best practice and set within the Suffolk context.  It covers more than just technical standards for roads.  Requirements for footpaths, cycleways, utilities, sustainable drainage are also set out for example.  It also sets out a design approach that is needed to deliver genuinely attractive walking and cycling routes.

This Streets Guide provides a new process for thinking about how new development provides access for all sorts of users, not just to the road network but the surrounding area.  This follows on from the National Design Guide and Manual for Streets 2 which set out design approaches to encourage walking and cycling, but also the needs of vulnerable users. 

The focus on users and then translates to movement corridors to inform layouts for new developments of any scale.  The approach can also help to develop new policy through local and neighbourhood plans. 

The Guide does not set out detailed parking standards or measures to control the volume of traffic.  It also does not provide the answer to all sites and, although examples are provided, these might not apply on all cases.  The provision of electric charging points has been a particular challenge to address because standard charging points for use on streets are not yet available.  The County Council is part of an innovate project known as Live Labs that is investigating how existing lighting infrastructure could create vehicle charging. 

The guide is not intended to be used to resist development.  It is to guide designers and developers and, hopefully, small-medium-sized companies will find this guide helpful in drawing together proposals that they want to put forward.

Account has been made of the Planning White Paper that was published by the Government in August 2020 and the detailed guidance on the provision of cycling infrastructure.

The Streets Guide is not intended to be a formal supplementary planning document but will be used by the County Council in responding to applications as the highway authority. 

If you do have any questions on the design guide that you want to ask before responding to the consultation do email suffolkstreets@suffolk.gov.uk and one of the team will respond to you as soon as possible.

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