Northstowe Community Forum: 6 February 2019
60 members of the public attended in person, 12 watched live online via the live stream. Forum was chaired by Alex Maylon.
Small Notices (livestream +7 minutes)
Prajina Baisyet from Cambridge County Council introduced the Northstowe Residential Travel Survey which is an annual survey of residents’ transport habits to enable the County Council to better understand and improve transport in Northstowe.
Everyone who has signed up for travel benefits will be contacted via email and asked to take part.
Jon London, the Community Development Officer fed back on his actions from the previous Forum on litter and dangerous driving. He has communicated the concerns of the residents to most of the housebuilders but he has had difficulties getting them to acknowledge responsibility. A community litter-pick will happen later in the month. Community-led events are going strong.
Emma Wilson gave a short update on crime in Northstowe, noting that although there was crime in the area, it is actually less than you would anticipate.
Andy Daily confirmed that the new Northstowe Secondary School was on track to open in September, and introduced the new head: Carole Moss. She has been working with local primary heads as well as years 5 and 6 on a range of topics including school uniform. It was confirmed that the 3G pitch will be open September, and that the rest of the sports facilities would become available around May/June 2020.
Allotments and Pavilion (livestream -1:58)
Kirstin Donaldson of South Cambridgeshire District Council gave an update on the Allotments and Sports Pavilion.
The allotments land is currently with the solicitors to finalise the land transfer from Gallagher Estates. This will come with a pot of money to lay it out in accordance with the community consultation work done by Emily Haysom.
Architects Saunders Boston have been contracted for the design and delivery of the Pavilion, and will be engaging in community consultation shortly. The southern sport pitches will be seeded in the spring and ready for use approximately 18 to 24 months later.
Phase 1 public spaces update (livestream +30 minutes)
Stephen Sage from L & Q (Formerly Gallagher Estates) gave an update on phase 1 open spaces
- The Green will be completed mid-April
- Work on Pioneer Park, the northern greenway and attached play areas will start around May/June and be completed by the end of 2019
- Work on the southern greenway, attached play area and the water park (lake next to the guided busway) will be complete by 2020.
- Images of the types of play equipment are in the slide deck.
- LEAP 4 will be delivered at the same time as the houses surrounding it in plot H9.
- For the first 12 months maintenance will be the responsibility of L & Q, after this it will go to a maintenance company, who will probably be contracted to South Cambridgeshire District Council
- There are currently no plans to screen off the works site on the B1050, but L & Q will keep the weeds/ground covering under control.
- L & Q are aware of the issues with manhole covers failing on Stirling road. The subcontractor responsible has gone into administration which has made it difficult to determine the reason for the failures. They were all heavy duty kite marked manhole covers. A new contractor is being found to replace them, within the next two weeks.
- L & Q will be running monthly litter-picks.
- The path to the side of Stirling Road has been closed to allow services to be connected to H6. Stephen Sage acknowledged that the community was not warned that the path on one side of the road would be closed, and will ensure that in the future the community is notified in advance.
- Stephen Sage has said that he is happy to be contacted if there are any issues with the built environment in Northstowe, and to contact Jon London in a first instance who will pass on concerns.
- The Employment land is reserved for businesses only. It would only be released for housing if it is still undeveloped after a significant period when it has been genuinely marketed
Town Centre Strategy (+1:11 minutes)
Damon Smith from Homes England gave the update
- There will be community consultations about the town centre.gmail.co,
- Northstowe is intended to complement, but be distinct from other developments in the area
- Homes England are looking at previous new towns in depth to ensure that any mistakes are not repeated.
- The fundamental idea is to create a destination based town centre of places to visit, live and work, rather than a retail based town centre, as it is very likely that most retail will move online in the next ten years
- This will be a flexible strategy to enable the town centre to change to fit locals needs over time
- Anticipated first buildings include a market hall & community hub (as well as the secondary school)
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