Plans in for ‘21st century’ Oxfordshire Garden Village

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Plans for the Oxfordshire Garden Village in West Oxfordshire have been lodged by Grosvenor Britain & Ireland

The Oxfordshire Garden Village masterplan sets out provision for 2,200 homes, new primary and secondary schools, sports facilities, parks, allotments and 57,000 sq m of employment space. The new employment park is designed in particular to attract advanced manufacturing businesses.

The site was one of 14 garden villages endorsed by the UK Government in 2017 to help meet the UK’s housing need. Grosvenor was appointed in the same year by local landowners to bring forward a planning application for an inclusive and sustainable scheme.

The project has aimed to establish a new benchmark for community engagement. Local residents and front-line service providers have been closely involved in the design process through a series of events, exhibitions and study tours of other award-winning developments.

A sustainable community

Oxfordshire Garden Village is the first new community outside London designed to act on the ambitious sustainability goals set last year by Grosvenor Britain & Ireland to address the climate emergency.

Sustainability commitments include:

  • A net biodiversity gain will be achieved with 40% of the site remaining undeveloped, including just under 4 hectares of new woodland planted to preserve and improve natural habitats and capture carbon
  • 20% of the village’s energy demand will be met using renewable sources. Land will be safeguarded for a smart energy hub to connect to renewable energy projects and for an electric vehicle charging station
  • All homes will be energy efficient, with a focus on building fabric that outperforms current Building Regulations
  • The entire site will use electricity for heating and hot water to help save up to 80% of carbon emissions compared with gas heating
  • Walking and cycling will be encouraged by a network of green, segregated routes linking homes and workplaces, including a dedicated cycleway to the local station.

Opportunities to design in further sustainability measures to help meet local aspirations around net-zero carbon will be explored through the build-out period for the development.

Silvia Lazzerini, project director for strategic land at Grosvenor Britain & Ireland, said: “This application is the result of extensive dialogue with the community, council and stakeholders to make sure we understood and listened to local priorities and shaped our masterplan around them.

“The Oxfordshire Garden Village presents a fantastic opportunity to deliver the homes that the area needs.  It is also a chance to set a new benchmark for what a sustainable, deliverable development at scale can look like.

“From the outset our vision has been to create a new community which respects the natural environment – a place where people and nature can not only live alongside one another, but actually thrive together. This outline masterplan is an early step on that journey to establish a neighbourhood that will grow and strengthen over time.”

AECOM acts as planning consultant for the project, with Terence O’Rourke delivering design and masterplanning and Stantec providing engineering support.

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