Economic Development and Employment Land Needs, Greater Cambridge Shared Planning

Client: South Cambridgeshire District Council
Location: Cambridge

Appointed by South Cambridgeshire District Council on behalf of both South Cambridgeshire District Council and Cambridge City Council (represented by the ‘Greater Cambridge Shared Planning Service’), our Economic Planning team were asked to review the economic development and employment land needs of South Cambridgeshire District and Cambridge City (the ‘Greater Cambridge’ area) to 2041.

The unique project, the study required an understanding of the Cambridge economy, which has seen an explosion of growth in recent years as a result of the successes in knowledge-based sectors and research and development.


The final report provides clear recommendations as to the amount of land required for employment purposes over the plan period.

North East Cambridge, and the industrial estates within, were a particular focus in light of an emerging Area Action Plan. GL Hearn’s report helped to underscore a need for maintaining industrial floorspace that has been lost elsewhere in Cambridge.

Also, the report looked at specific locations for growth and where certain uses, such as Wet and Dry Labs (used in the bio-tech and pharmaceutical industries), would be most beneficial.

In conjunction with this report, GL Hearn also produced a topic paper looking at the relationship between housing and employment land uses. This considered the impact of the various employment scenarios on housing need.

The report was completed in a relatively quick time frame in order for the councils to meet their Local Plan review programmes.

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