Website URL : http://www.cherwell.gov.uk/index.cfm?articleid=10158

Second phase approved for south west Bicester

The second phase of the south west Bicester development programme has been given the go ahead, paving the way for up to 726 new homes to be built.

At a meeting of Cherwell District Council's planning committee yesterday (Thursday, 7 August), councillors granted outline planning permission for the development of arable farmland north of Whitelands Farm, adjoining Middleton Stoney Road in Bicester.

The plans allow for a residential development of up to 726 homes to be built along with amenities including an extra care facility, primary school and sports pitches.

Cllr Michael Gibbard, lead member for planning, said: "This application is for the second phase of the south west Bicester development programme, which is also known as Kingsmere. It is adjacent to the first phase of development and will bring the total number of homes across the two sites to somewhere in the region of 2,300.

"This site has been earmarked for development in Cherwell's submitted draft local plan and as such, this is not a speculative application by an opportunistic developer. The development of this site meets guidelines as set out in the Government's National Planning Policy Framework in that the adverse impact of developing the area will not significantly outweigh the benefits of increased housing provision."

In addition to the houses, the site will also be used to provide an extra care facility incorporating 60 units, a primary school and shops. Play facilities and sports pitches will be provided, as will allotments and open spaces. All relevant infrastructure including roads, footpaths and cycle routes will also be included.

The properties will be a mixture of maisonettes, bungalows and houses of varying sizes. At least 30 per cent of all homes will be affordable and offered on either a shared ownership or affordable rent basis.

As part of obtaining planning consent, applicant Countryside Properties (Bicester) Ltd will also be required to make Section 106 contributions to various amenities and services including the secondary school on phase one and improved transport links including bus, roads and rail.

The developer will now need to submit further, more detailed applications before commencing work on site.

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