256 low carbon homes plan beside Cambourne Business Park is submitted
This is how 256 new low carbon homes could look if a planning application is approved for land beside Cambourne Business Park.
The plans, including 72 affordable, net zero homes, are from South Cambridgeshire Investment Partnership (SCIP) a 50-50 partnership between South Cambridgeshire District Council and The Hill Group.
The 9.64ha site - currently a meadow - would feature homes ranging from one-bedroom apartments to five-bedroom houses. Some 40 per cent of the homes - 102 properties - would be affordable, with 70 per cent of these earmarked for affordable rent and the rest available for shared ownership.
And 72 of the affordable homes would achieve net zero carbon with Passivhaus levels of performance, thanks to high levels of insulation, airtight construction, air source heat pumps for heating and hot water, photovoltaic panels and energy efficient building services and controls.
The whole development will be gas-free, with each home designed so that water usage would not exceed 99 litres per person per day - lower than the 110 litres standard required by national building regulations.
Every house will have its own garden, with the flats due to have a private terrace or balcony.
The existing vacant marketing suite on the business park would become a new community cafe under the plans, while playground amenities and green open spaces are promised., along with Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems, informal woodlands, greens and watercourses.
The applicants say they would deliver a 20 per cent net gain in biodiversity with landscaping to enhance wildlife, new trees, hedges, wildflowers, a pond and swales – along with the preservation of the existing woodland. Off-site biodiversity improvements would also be funded.
New pedestrian, bus and cycle lanes will connect the new community to the developing Cambourne West site nearby.
Electric vehicle charging points will be available, with provision for them at every property, and space to store over 800 bicycles.
Tom Hill, a SCIP board member and regional director at the Hill Group, said: “As a partnership, we are committed to listening to the local community and being mindful of the environmental impact that can come from development. It was imperative for us to ensure the design of this development embodies these values. As such, we look forward to delivering high quality, energy-efficient homes to higher sustainability standards alongside a range of open spaces; each with their own character and purpose, helping to establish a strong community.”
Three self-build plots will be advertised for 12 months.
Under the original masterplan for Cambourne, the site was set aside to be used for employment uses, but has remained undeveloped.
District councillor Richard Stobart, a SCIP board member, said: “Ensuring that this development will be as conscious of the environment as possible has always been a key priority for us at the council. We are aiming for a very high standard when it comes to the site’s green credentials, and this is evident through the plans we’ve submitted. Making new homes as energy efficient as possible has never been more important, with rising fuel bills and the cost of living crisis impacting residents across the country. By working together as a partnership and bringing our varied skill sets together, we hope to deliver a flourishing new community, which encourages residents to live more sustainably.”
The district council is the planning authority, so will determine its own plans, but public consultation takes place first, with residents able to comment until February 24 at the Greater Cambridge Planning website by searching for the reference 23/00123/FUL.