Providing quality services for the future health, education, sports and leisure and community needs of the Borough’s residents are fundamental factors in achieving a high quality of life, and with a growing population it is essential that these are planned in such a way that they meet the future demands that are placed upon the town. Growth within Southend needs to be infrastructure led, ensuring key services and facilities are delivered when and where they are needed, taking account of existing capacity and the phasing of future development.
Good quality infrastructure is essential to enable growth to occur. This includes physical infrastructure such as utilities (water, electricity, gas, digital, etc) as well as wider social infrastructure such as schools, health, sports and leisure facilities. It is known that there are localised issues with infrastructure within the Borough that will require addressing in the future. Examples are some schools being full with others undersubscribed, sewer capacity limitations and weaknesses in the electricity grid in parts of Leigh.
New development can exacerbate current problems if these are not addressed but also has the potential to significantly improve the situation through new investment that also benefits existing users. An example of this would be a new Link Road (multi-modal) between the A127 and Shoeburyness, which would be vital in facilitating new neighbourhood/s to the north of Southend, whilst providing relief to the local network to the east of the borough (See Section 2.7).
A high-level assessment of different infrastructure types in Southend has already been undertaken as part of the South Essex Strategic Infrastructure Position Statement (SIPS)*. The provision of community services and infrastructure is the responsibility of a range of public and private bodies. Discussions have been held with various providers which will continue as part of detailed plan preparation as it becomes clearer what sites will be included within the New Local Plan.
A detailed Infrastructure Delivery Plan will be prepared for the New Local Plan to identify what the current issues are and the implications of growth. It will also identify potential timescales for improvements and how these will be funded. Examples of funding mechanisms include the Business Plans of individual providers and developer contributions, including through a review of the Community Infrastructure Levy and legal agreements such as Section 106 Agreements under the Town and Country Planning Act.
Providing Community Services and Infrastructure
What does this Issue Cover?
- Community facilities and other infrastructure priorities
- Planning for future demand for social and community infrastructure for people at all stages in their lives
What information or evidence do we need for this issue?
- Southend and Rochford Settlement Role and Hierarchy Study (2020)
- Southend Playing Pitch Strategy and Built Facilities Strategy (2018)
- South Essex Strategic Infrastructure Position Statement (2019)
- Infrastructure Delivery Plan (to be reviewed)
Related Southend 2050 Outcomes - where we want to be
- Residents feel the benefits of social connection, in building and strengthening their local networks through common interests and volunteering
- A range of initiatives help increase the capacity for communities to come together to enhance their neighbourhood and environment
- Our streets and public spaces are valued and support the mental and physical wellbeing or residents and visitors
- Southenders are remaining well enough to enjoy fulfilling lives, throughout their lives
- People have a wide choice of transport options
- Southend is a leading digital city with world class infrastructure that reflects equity of digital provision for the young, vulnerable and disadvantaged.