Landmark planning consent for the creation of 241 new homes in Benson, South Oxfordshire.
The significance of this prjoect is as much about the positive result, as the fact that the decision was made decisively at Committee level. In recent history, strategic developments of this nature would have been refused at Committee and therefore had to be pursued and won at an appeal instead.
The village will see the timely delivery of desperately needed new homes including a much welcomed contribution of 96 affordable dwellings (40% of the total). Local housing need cannot be understated and is not just particular to South Oxfordshire; every local authority district in the Oxfordshire find themselves with a significant shortage of housing.
Another benefit to the community borne out as a result of this first-round success is that all of the associated community facilities promised as part of the scheme can and will be built out. These facilities include; additional school playing fields; a scout hut; a skate park; a nature park; trim trail; and an equipped play-space. These facilities were identified by the local community through a series of public consultations to ascertain the needs of the community and their shared aspirations for the village.
From an Urban design perspective, in scheme we have been able to embed some fantastic design features including protected vistas, green boulevards and generous landscaped public spaces. Moreover, a cohesive transport strategy for the entire site ensures better integration of new urban space with the existing settlement.