First phase of Northstowe planning application submitted

Developers have submitted a planning application to South Cambridgeshire District Council (SCDC) for the first 1,500 houses at Northstowe.

A master plan for the whole town, which is expected to have 10,000 houses when completed, has also been submitted.

The initial phase includes a primary school, sports hub, shops and a recycling centre.

The plans have been put forward by developer Gallagher and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA).

Shona Johnston, county councillor for Longstanton which includes Northstowe, said: "It's going to be vitally important that we get Northstowe right, right at the start.

"We've got to make sure we develop a proper community that people want to live in and can be happy in."

Public response

Northstowe will be built at the former Oakington barracks site, which was subsequently used as an immigration detention centre until 2010.

Gallagher and the HCA submitted their plans after working with a consortium of 12 parish councils and asking the public for responses.

The greatest number of comments about the plans related to the need for the A14 to be upgraded and finding ways to reduce congestion on the dual carriageway.

Upgrading the A14 was considered an essential part of the initial Northstowe proposal, but the coalition government shelved this plan.

However, the new town will be served by a public transport system in the form of the guided busway, which was opened by Cambridgeshire County Council in 2011.

The first 1,500 houses will be built next to Longstanton's busway stop.

Councillor Tim Wotherspoon, SCDC's cabinet member for Northstowe and new communities, said: "The town is vital to responding to the acute housing need in South Cambridgeshire.

"We will be publishing the plans and consulting with residents to make sure they have their say."

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