Northstowe: Council Demands Exemplar Standards

Councillors have agreed priorities for how to make the proposed 10,000 home new town of Northstowe a great place to live, work and go to school at their latest public meeting.

The masterplan for Northstowe setting out how the land at the new town will be used to make sure each phase of the development is fully integrated was endorsed in July, subject to a phasing plan and greater detail about what will make Northstowe "an exemplar in sustainability" as required by planning policy. 

Following a public consultation on proposals, a list of exemplar measures for the whole town were suggested by South Cambridgeshire District Council, Cambridgeshire County Council and the joint promoters Gallagher and the Homes and Communities Agency before the ten District and County Councillors on the Northstowe Joint Development Control Committee agreed the standards future planning applications for the new town will be judged to enhance life for future and nearby residents. 

The exemplar measures agreed include making sure the town 

* Encourages sustainable living 

* Produces low emissions

* Good design and layout ensures residents have easy access to facilities, and good transport links are in place, including a dedicated route for The Busway.

Agreement today paves the way for a planning application for the first phase of the new town which could see 1,500 homes, a primary school, sports hub, areas of open space, a local centre, shops, employment opportunities and a site for a household recycling centre built to be considered by the committee on Wednesday 24 October. 

This will be considered in conjunction with the town's masterplan, which includes the exemplar list. 

Cllr Tim Wotherspoon, South Cambridgeshire District Council's cabinet member for Northstowe, said: "There is always a balance to be struck with all new developments as we aim for the highest quality possible, while still making sure it is viable so it can be delivered. 

I am very pleased to have the exemplar list and plan for how each phase of the proposed new town would be delivered in place as we are now ready to consider the planning application for the first phase. There is an acute need for more housing in the area to cater for future generations, but the plans must also be the best possible for existing communities as well."

Cllr Ian Bates, Cambridgeshire County Council's cabinet member for growth and planning, said: "Approval of the exemplar list today gives us a benchmark for the town as we look to build a community at Northstowe. We want to make sure the aspirations of both current and future residents are met and we are very committed to working with our partners to deliver new communities where people will want to live in, and where business will prosper."

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