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Plans submitted for 5,750 home 'garden suburb' in Kent

Plans submitted for 5,750 home 'garden suburb' in Kent31 Aug 2012

A planning application has been submitted for a new 5,750 home 'garden suburb' in Ashford, Kent, which would cover 415 acres across Chilmington Green.

The proposed masterplan was submitted by a consortium of four developers and includes plans for 5,750 new homes arranged over three neighbourhoods with a high street, a secondary school, four primary schools, a park and extensive areas of formal and informal green space.

The consortium includes Hodson Developments, Jarvis Homes, Pentland Homes and Ward Homes, which proposed to create a "long term, holistic vision for the area" which would be delivered in four phases over two decades.

The proposed garden suburb includes a sustainable transport strategy at the centre of the plans, which aims to connect Chilmington Green to Ashford by a network of footpath and cycle routes as well as a high quality bus service. The renewable energy strategy also proposed extensive areas of natural green space to contribute to the community’s environmental sustainability.

The masterplan has taken into account guidance from the Town and Country Planning Association, which said that "Garden Cities and Suburbs" should be used as part of the solution to the UK’s chronic housing shortage.

“Plans for Chilmington Green re-invent Ebenezer Howard’s Garden City principles for the 21st century," said Ian Bull, project manager for the consortium. Garden Suburbs based on Howard’s principles have stood the test of time and continue to set a benchmark for new communities.

It is hoped that the proposed development will provide "well-designed places" that offer communities a lifestyle of wellbeing through a range of employment opportunities, cultural facilities and services, the consortium said.

The scheme proposed a mix of housing tenures which include plans for affordable housing, it said. The development will include well-connected and walkable neighbourhoods, which it is hoped will provide the chance for residents to connect with nature through carefully landscaped streets, parks, private gardens and allotments.”

A Community Development Trust will be created to deliver a programme of social activities designed to nurture the new community from the outset and maintain the key facilities and open spaces to ensure a high quality of environment is established and maintained. 

Ashford Borough Council is expected to make a decision on the outline planning application in Spring 2013.