Council approves plans for eco-town

Council approves plans for eco-town

Detailed planning permission has been granted for the first phase of one of the eco-town developments.

Cherwell District Council has given permission for 393 homes and an energy centre to be built as part of the first exemplar phase of the North-west Bicester eco-town in Oxfordshire.

North-west Bicester eco-town

The eco-town was one of four approved by the Labour government in February 2010. The coalition government has shown limited support for the initiative, cutting its funding by half, and imposing new conditions on developers to demonstrate local support.

Housing association A2Dominion is the housing provider for the North-west Bicester scheme. Of the 393 homes in the first phase, 119 will be affordable housing, and the Homes and Communities Agency is putting in £6 million.

John Knevett, deputy chief executive and chief commercial officer of A2Dominion, said: ‘This is an important first stage milestone for the project and comes following close consultation with the local community and stakeholders, who have helped to shape these plans.’

The homes on the site will be built to level five of the code for sustainable homes, and the development will meet the requirements of the government’s planning policy statement on eco-towns.

The council has also granted outline planning permission for a nursery, community centre, eco-business centre, offices, a primary school, three retail units, and a pub.

The eco-town is being promoted by P3Eco, with Terry Farrell and Partners as architects and masterplanners, Barton Willmore as planning and design consultancy, and Hyder as engineering consultants.