Development appraisal involves research into constraints and opportunities evolving from the location, legal and planning aspects of potential sites as well as their physical characteristics.
- Lawyers to report on legal encumbrances and ownership.
- Surveyors to research site history and planning issues.
- Geotechnical and civil engineers.
- Rights of light surveyors.
- Archaeological consultants.
- Traffic and highway consultants.
- Services engineers to study existing and future services to site.
- Valuation surveyors to study demand and competing values.
- Planning consultants
- Cost consultants.
Potential sites will need to fit reflect the developers corporate strategy in relation to:
- Region and location.
- Size of the potential development.
- Type of development and its market.
- Proximity to transportation or centres of population.
- Order of costs.
Research into legal issues may include:
- Title and conveyance documentation.
- Land Registry records.
- Boundaries and demarcation.
- Restrictive covenants.
- Rights of way and easements.
- Rights of light.
- Party walls.
- Existing tenancies licences and unexpired leases.
- Access, adopted highways and third-party access rights.
- Tree preservation orders
- Listed buildings and conservation areas.
Government policy on planning is now set out in the National Planning Policy Framework. When considering potential sites, developers may which to consider whether the proposed development will impact on, or be impacted by:
- The planning history of the site.
- Local needs such as employment and affordable housing.
- Likely local reaction.
- The need for consultation.
- The local plan.
- The potential for the development to set planning precedents for the local area.
- The effects on the local community and local businesses.
- The potential for the imposition of planning conditions or planning obligations (section 106 agreements).
- The community infrastructure levy.
- Transportation and parking restrictions.
- The likely reaction of statutory consultees and non-statutory consultees.
- The likely need for an environmental impact assessment and the possible scope of such an assessment.
- Tree preservation orders
- Listed buildings and conservation area restrictions.
Key physical characteristics of potential site will need to be assessed. This assessment might include:
- Existing site survey information including drawings of public utilities and services including overhead cables
- Assessment of shape and topography of the site.
- Any history of flood risk.
- Condition of existing buildings on site.
- Geotechnical information such as previous foundation drawings and any boreholes or trial pit information.
- Characteristics and condition of surrounding buildings affected by the development.
- Ground contamination.
- Landscape features, water run-off and surface drainage.
- Proximity of surrounding occupants likely to be affected by nuisance the redevelopment.
- old wells, basements and underground obstructions or underground storage tanks.
Market research might include:
- Estimate of time before the development is completed
- Local amenities attractive to the market, such as; location, ease of parking , public transportation.
- The scale of potential tenant’s or purchasers requirements.
- Site and local features that may be attractive to future tenants or purchasers.
- Lessons learned from similar developments.
- Current demand and competing supply of facilities coming onto the market within the timeframe of the development.
- Future proofing building requirements.
- National and regional economic trends.
- The potential effect of technical change.
- The potential effect of social trends such
- The potential effect of changes in working practices.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Community infrastructure levy.
- Condition survey.
- Desk study.
- Development manager.
- Future proofing.
- Investment property.
- Legal agreements.
- National Planning Policy Framework.
- Net Present Value.
- Residual valuation.
- Site selection and acquisition.
- Site appraisal.
- Site information.
- Site surveys.
- Speculative construction.
- Technical due diligence.
- Vendor survey.
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