To ask the Minister for Housing; Planning and Local Government the new guidelines being issued in regard to local housing assessment needs in each local authority as outlined under the new National Planning Framework; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
The preparation, in the context of National Policy Objective 37 of the National Planning Framework (NPF), of a "Housing Need and Demand Assessment" (HNDA) for each local authority area, will be important in estimating likely future housing need. Work on this process has commenced in my Department, which includes the establishment of an expert advisory group.
An evidence-based approach will form the basis of a more accurate and consistent projection of demand for different tenures, types and sizes of housing, including specialist housing need. The HNDA methodology will comprise guidance and an assessment tool, that will inform local authority Housing Strategy requirements.
As well as assisting local authorities in ensuring that long-term strategic housing needs are planned for and can met, the HNDA process will also inform the preparation of City and County Development Plans, and in particular their core strategy requirements.
Work on guidance for local authorities in this regard is being undertaken in conjunction with a parallel set of updated guidance on the preparation of Development Plans, many of which are due to commence variation or review in the coming months.
It is of note that an aggregate view of HNDAs will assist in forming a national picture and reporting overall, including, in particular, monitoring and assessing delivery and performance in line with national objectives. It is intended that draft guidance on both HNDA and Development Plans will be available for consideration by the end of the year.
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