Development plan outlines residents views for Chesterton housing development
ARCHITECTS have laid out a vision for the new 2500 home neighbourhood in the south west of Cirencester that includes bringing back rail links to the town and creating a community hub at Chesterton Farm.
Proposals for the development in Chesterton were revealed at a presentation at the Ashcroft Centre in Cirencester by John Thompson & Partners using ideas put forward in a public consultation weekend earlier this month, which was fiercely opposed by residents.
Among other ideas presented were building a new primary school, extending Chesterton cemetery and creating community and retail uses around a new square.
The ideas presented by JTP are included in a conceptual masterplan document that will be developed over the next year and then used as a guide for planning proposals which are expected to be submitted around Christmas 2014.
Charles Campion, a partner at the firm, said: “The Community Planning Weekend was an opportunity for people to share their local knowledge and participate in the planning of this new neighbourhood. The feedback we received was really valuable and has directly influenced the design of the conceptual masterplan.”
“It was also important for us to hear people’s concerns about development in Cirencester and we understand that some residents will continue to object to the principle of the proposal. However, many participants felt that, if the development goes ahead, they want to ensure it is the best possible addition to Cirencester.
“The community planning workshops have allowed us to work to ideas and aspirations that people have but there is still a lot of work to do. We will report to the community through forums until the master panning is completed. There will be an opportunity for people here to look at the process and set up focus groups to look at any key issues.”
The first in a series of forums that will allow people to give further input on the development will take place at 7pm on Wednesday June 18 at the Ashcroft Centre, on Ashcroft Road, Cirencester.
Although many residents turned out in force to vent their anger over the development at the consultation, opinions were more divided following the presentation.
John Carew said: “I think they are still fogging over the real issue which is that local people don’t want it.”
Andrea Pellagram said: “I thought they did a really good job of summarising the key issues that were concerned. They have demonstrated a willing need to work with the community.”
Michael Woolf explained that whilst he neither favoured or opposed the development he had faith JTP could do the work.
“There has been in general a good effort to serve the views of the community and look at the potential impact of the development.”
The recently published CDC 5-year Housing Land Supply report , said 2500 new homes needed to be built in the Chesterton Farm area from 2019 until 2034 at a rate of around 166 houses a year.
To view the conceptual masterplan visit www.scribd.com/doc/226517061/20140519-Masterplan
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