Planning Update Delays
As a result of the Covid 19 pandemic, the United Kingdom entered a nationwide lockdown on the 23rd of March 2020. This meant that all non-essential services were required to either close or work remotely where possible. This resulted in a number of local authority services being suspended.
With the current easing of the lockdown, we can confirm that our planning team in the UK are engaging with all the relevant authorities to ascertain the progress of all our sites.
We are treating this as a matter of urgency and we hope to have some updates to share with you in the next 2 to 3 weeks.
Oakington, Cambridgeshire, UK sold out
Our latest strategic land investment site is located on the south western edge of Oakington, Cambridgeshire close to the historical city of Cambridge. On successful allocation of the site for residential use, it is projected that investors will enjoy a close to 300% return over a 4 – 6 year period. This equates to an approximately 31% annualised return.
The site is located on the south side of Dry Drayton Road on the southern boundary of to the town of Oakington. Currently it consists of permanent pasture land that is used for making hay and is surrounded by a mixture of existing light commercial and residential development. It is strategically located directly on the town's main access road, less than 1 mile from the A14 providing direct links to Cambridge and London. It is well placed to existing supermarkets, schools, health care facilities and employment areas to make the site a sustainable urban extension site.
Our Planning Department Comments
- South Cambridgeshire District's area surrounds the major city of Cambridge. Due to the national importance of the Cambridge region, successive administrations have allocated the housing growth requirements for the city in South Cambridgeshire due to the historic medieval layout of the city where it is impossible to allocate new housing within its confines. In the past this has required releases of land from the green belt and the planned allocation of development in new settlements in South Cambridgeshire. The Council have produced a new local plan for the period 2011-2031. The councils needs to provide sites for 19,000 new homes over this period.
- Oakington is adjacent to the eastern boundary of Northstowe, one of the new development settlements. Northstowe is expected to deliver 9,500 homes for the city throughout the plan period. Further planned growth cannot be achieved to the north or west due to physical constraints and this site will provide an opportunity to address the shortfall and for expansion.
- Previous policies for Northstowe have been planned to allow flexibility for future expansion and it is therefore our intention to promote this site as an opportunity for future growth. Whilst the site is currently in the greenbelt it is on the edge of Northstowe and the council's policy states that when reviewing Green Belt boundaries, they will take account of the need to channel development towards urban areas within Green Belts and to villages inset within the Green Belt. Northstowe is seen as a highly sustainable location and there will be the inevitable need to plan for its incremental growth. Once the plan is reviewed we will be promoting the site as an opportunity.
Latest Planning Update
The initial consultations as referenced in the update earlier this year were caried out and completed on the 24th February 2020. However, as a result of the nationwide UK lockdown, all subsequent work was paused, both at a local parish level and at South Cambridgeshire level.
Subsequent to the easing of restrictions, South Cambridgeshire is now working with Cambridge City Council to produce a joint plan for the region and submissions have been made by ourselves to CCC promoting our site.
Cunsultations on the preferred options for Greater Cambridgeshire are tabled for Q2 2021 and we expect to have some further feedback in Q3 2021.