News release from 06/08/2018

Vision for proposed new town north of Waterbeach published

Guidance for how a proposed new town north of Waterbeach could be developed has been published today (Monday 6 August).

South Cambridgeshire District Council’s Supplementary Planning Document provides the vision for how the whole town will come forward to create a thriving new community and sets the benchmark that planning applications will be assessed against.

The document gives details on how developers are expected to ensure the new town reduces energy consumption and looks for opportunities to generate renewable energy as well.

Measures the Council would be looking for in applications would include smart energy systems, building layout to optimise opportunities for natural light, the use of efficient systems for heating, cooling and where possible, heat recovery, and incorporating renewable energy technologies within the development such as solar panels.

The Council has also said that developers should explore the opportunity to incorporate on-site renewable and low-carbon energy generation solutions within the new town which will allow it to provide its own power rather than drawing from regional stations.

The planning document also sets out that the approach to building new homes should look to reduce water consumption to less than 110 litres per person per day. This could include using harvesting rainwater to flush toilets and using lower grade grey water for irrigation.

The vision also says that walking and cycling should be prioritised within the new town to reduce the use of private cars. Cycle routes to Cambridge and linking to neighbouring communities should also be part of plans put forward.

The Council’s document also states that developers must contribute funding to:

  • strategic transport improvements that could include on or off line dualling of the A10
  • upgrades to the junctions on the A10
  • Improvements to the Milton Interchange
  • new public transport and cycle links to Cambridge.

The document also identifies locations for the five primary schools, two secondary schools, sixth form college, on site Park and Ride facility and relocated railway station. The town may also include a special education needs school.

The vision also provides a guide for the building heights at the new town. Near the lake, town centre and relocated railway station these would be four to six storeys, with lower buildings of two to three storeys near the edge of the neighbouring village of Waterbeach to ensure it is sympathetically designed.

The Council has also said in the document that the development of shops, employment, education, community facilities and transport links must go hand-in-hand with new homes being built so people moving in early have the right facilities as the town grows.

The Supplementary Planning Document supports the Council’s Local Plan, which sets the overall strategy for development in the area. It gives more details and guidance for the development of the new town.

The Supplementary Planning Document will be presented to a Scrutiny meeting on Tuesday 14 August so it can be debated and recommendations made in advance of the Council’s decision making Cabinet considering it on Wednesday 5 September.

If agreed by Cabinet, a six week public consultation will be carried out.

Deputy Leader of South Cambridgeshire District Council with responsibility for strategic planning, Cllr Aidan Van de Weyer, said: “Lots of work has been done with the local Parish Council to help prepare this document and the views of the community are really important. We know there are key issues such as transport and the A10 impact to understand, and this document sets out a vision for the range of issues we expect developers to consider in their applications. It is important that the proposed new town works as a whole, especially as we have more than one developer, and that we set a high bar that must be passed. Any new development must be respectful of the local area so that the village of Waterbeach retains its identity, and the new community has its own.”

Outline planning applications already submitted to the Council for a new town north of Waterbeach will only be assessed once the Local Plan for South Cambridgeshire has been adopted and the Supplementary Planning Document far enough advanced.

For more information on the report being presented to Scrutiny, visit: