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Cambridge City Council approves its own partnership’s plans for 48 council homes only on a casting vote



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Plans for 48 new homes in Cherry Hinton from a partnership involving the city council were only approved by its own members on a casting vote, writes Hannah Brown, Local Democracy Reporter.

The council homes for rent will be built across two sites in Cherry Hinton, along the High Street and Colville Road. They were put forward by Cambridge Investment Partnership, a joint enterprise between the city council and Hill Investment Partnerships.

How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. This is the view from shops along the High Street. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332367)
How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. This is the view from shops along the High Street. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332367)

Under the plans, four commercial buildings with six flats above, and another four flats in a two-storey building will be demolished on the southern site, and replaced with commercial space and 28 new flats in a part three-storey, part four-storey building.

On the northern site, a pair of two-storey buildings containing eight flats will be pulled down and three two-storey houses built, along with 17 flats in a three-storey building.

Cllr Katie Porrer (Lib Dem, Market) and Cllr Dave Baigent (Lab, Romsey) were unimpressed by the planned 29 car parking spaces, with the latter noting the council is “fighting to reduce car use”.

How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332371)
How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332371)

Cllr Porrer said it was “really disappointing” to have that many spaces in a “reasonably sustainable place”.

However, Cllr Robert Dryden (Lab, Cherry Hinton) said residents in the area had asked for car parking spaces to be included, noting that another car park had been lost and the bus service in the area is “terrible”.

How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332375)
How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332375)

Cllr Katie Thornburrow (Lab, Petersfield) questioned why it was proposed the sustainability assessment rating of the development (BREEAM) would only be ‘Very Good’ when the council policy required it to be ‘Excellent’.

A planning officer explained that the sustainability study had concluded an ‘Excellent’ rating would not be achievable for the proposed development and changing the condition would mean approving plans that would not be deliverable

How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332373)
How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332373)

Cllr Thornburrow sought a deferral for more details, which was defeated despite backing from Cllr Porrer and Cllr Jenny Gawthrope Wood (Lab, King’s Hedges).

Voting on the plans was split, with three councillors against and three in favour.

Chair Cllr Martin Smart (Lab, King’s Hedges) had the casting vote and opted to approve the plans

How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332369)
How the Colville Road development in Cherry Hinton, Cambridge, would look. Image: Cambridge Investment Partnership (53332369)

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