Saturday, 13 June 2015

Bidwell West Developers Agree to Make Up £12m Funding Gap For #WoodsideLink #HRN2

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In a document entitled "Statement of Very Special Circumstances Addendum" Bidwell West Consortium developers (the HRN2 developers) have agreed to fund up to £12 million to help construct the £38.3m Woodside Link, a project by Central Bedfordshire Council.

The document acknowledges that the cost of the Woodside link is about £42 million, and that the HRN1 developers contributed funding towards the A5-M1 link, but made no contribution to the Woodside Link, except to provide the land. To alleviate congestion as a consequence of the growth within the identified Houghton Regis North allocation, the HRN2 developers have agreed to provide funding for signalisation at the A5/A5-M1 Link roundabout and at the A5120/A5-M1 Link roundabout along with a contribution toward Woodside Link: "it is acknowledged that the development proposal represents the largest contributor to the growth of the HRN allocation after Site 1 and therefore is required to contribute a greater share commensurate to the scale of the development proposed. As such, it is identified that the development proposal can provide the required signalisation in totality along with a large proportion of the remaining cost of the shortfall toward the Woodside Link. "

When the Woodside Link scheme was announced the cost had been estimated at £42m, but had fallen to £38.3m when the contract was issued. See http://www.hrnd.co.uk/2015/04/council-award-contract-for-woodside.html - The South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP) are contributing £20 million, the Government £5 million, local developers £1m.


Amendments in respect of Application CB/15/00297/OUT by Bidwell West Consortium have also been received by Central Bedfordshire Council. The amended items all have the word "REVISED" after them.  This is about detailed outline plans for Land west of Bidwell, and at Thorn, in the parish of Houghton Regis, to the north of the Houghton Regis Chalk Quarry.

The plans show the removal of some footpaths and bridleways, and the introduction of new bridlepaths footpaths and cycle routes. Bus stops and places for crossings are indicated. Open space and play areas are shown. Heights of buildings around the areas to be developed are also shown, along with landscaping, and proposals for a Primary School, a local centre, and land for community and leisure use including urban park, garden, orchards, allotments, and attenuation ponds. Detailed design codes are given.

Up to 1,850 homes are planned. Land to be developed would go right up to the edge of the quarry in the south, and have a green buffer abutting the edges of the Plaiters Way and Farriers Way existing developments. There will be variety in terms of the spacing of buildings, with continuous terraced houses and flats along the primary route and around open space; regularly spaced buildings in the centre of the character areas; and irregular spacing along the edges of green spaces.

Working names for the areas to be developed include, Lower Thorn Village, Upper Thorn Green, Park View Crescent, Bidwell Mews and Bluewater Heights. The "Design Code" documents give insights as to density and types of homes that will be located in these different areas.




Blue Waters Woodland

Blue Waters Woodland is outside of the area to be developed, but is in close proximity.

Links to documents revised:
All Documents
Link to Site Wide Masterplan
Link to Open Space and Development Parcel Phasing Plan


Comments on the proposals can be sent to planning@centralbedfordshire.gov.uk, or by post to Planning, Central Bedfordshire Council, Priory House, Monks Walk, Shefford, Bedfordshire, SG17 5TQ. Please quote CB/15/00297/OUT when writing.


Search earlier news desk items on "Woodside Link"