PRUDENTIAL TO PRESS CASE FOR GREAT HOLTS
Prudential Property Investment Managers (PRUPIM) have underlined their continued commitment to the proposed new neighbourhood north east of Chelmsford, known as Great Holts and have said that none of the other 70 sites put forward for housing throughout the borough will need to be developed if the proposal is taken forward.
The proposals, which are located on or near the former Boreham Airfield aim to meet identified housing needs to 2021 and provide for a sustainable new community of up to 6,000 new homes along with community facilities such as new schools and employment areas.
Chelmsford Borough Council has recently begun a consultation on all of the sites put forward by prospective developers to meet Chelmsford’s future housing growth. Great Holts features in this ‘Alternative Development Sites’ consultation. Shortly, the Council will also go out to consultation on its North Chelmsford Area Action Plan, which seeks to locate up to 800 new homes in the Broomfield area and around 4,500 to 5,000 north of Springfield.
Kevin Ashman at PRUPIM said, “We have always agreed with the Council that the optimum location for new development outside of sites within the built up area of Chelmsford is to the north east of the town. It is here that there are significant proposals for new infrastructure such as the north east bypass and a railway station. The key issue for us is how new development can be best accommodated and the draft North Chelmsford Area Action Plan presents just one option to the north east for peoples’ consideration – the Greater Beaulieu Park proposal which will surround the Grade I Listed New Hall.”
Kevin Ashman added, “We believe that our Great Holts proposal remains the best place for major new development and over the past eighteen months we have been pleased to receive substantial support for it from local residents and local organisations. We are asking everybody to show that support again by indicating during the consultation period that they wish to see Great Holts as the preferred location.”
Great Holts has previously been independently assessed by consultants acting for the Council and they found that it was a highly sustainable location in comparison with other sites.
The Great Holts proposal is:
Infrastructure-led – providing a critical mass of development in one location which can maximise financial resources to facilitate and spatially integrate key infrastructure such as the proposed NE bypass, public transport and a new NE Chelmsford railway station.
Capacity-led – it is the only site outside of Chelmsford with sufficient capacity to deliver the necessary growth in a sustainable way and respond to the future growth requirements defined by the Government
Employment-led – is able to provide the quantum and quality of commercial office space, meeting the known needs of key job-creating sectors.
Delivery-led – a single location which can be planned and delivered without the complexities of managing the contributions of multi-sites/multi-developers.
Connected yet protecting the settings of existing communities – can provide effective public transport to link through to the town centre and other key destinations but at the same time avoid coalescence with existing communities at Broomfield, Boreham and Springfield.
Great Holts also:
Retains and protects open attractive countryside and the built heritage – avoids adverse impact on countryside which English Heritage considers to be ‘special’ (at Broomfield and around New Hall) and uses disturbed and previously developed land on and around Boreham Airfield.
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Kevin Ashman said, “We are preparing to put forward our arguments to an independent planning inspector later this year as to why we believe Great Holts should be chosen. We would like to work with Chelmsford Borough Council to achieve a new community which will be a truly sustainable place to live and work.”
Chelmsford Borough Council began its Alternative Sites Consultation on 26th June and it will end on 7th August. The main way to have a say is through the online form on the Council’s website at http://web3.chelmsfordbc.gov.uk/af3/an/default.aspx/RenderForm/?F.Name=XsrYD5CqA24 For those without use of a computer, consultation forms may be obtained On request by telephoning (01245) 606330, faxing (01245) 606526, or writing to Planning Policy Manager, Planning and Building Control Services, Chelmsford Borough Council, Civic Centre, CM1 1JE. The Great Holts proposal is listed as site ALT34.
For more information, please contact Martin Hughes on 020 8366 2151 (DDI) or 07831 869878 (mobile).