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Blueprint pinpointing where homes will go in Bicester
7:20pm Thursday 24th May 2012 in Bicester
Plans for where thousands of homes will be built across North Oxfordshire have been revealed.
Bicester is set to see a total of 6,997 houses built up to 2031, according to Cherwell District Council’s local plan.
Former RAF land, off Skimmingdish Lane, has been designated for a hotel, employment and leisure use, and four new business parks could be built creating more than 8,500 jobs.
In total 16,750 homes will be built in in the district, including 4,352 in Banbury, 1,709 in villages, and 1,150 in smaller projects across the district. So far 2,542 homes have already been built.
The new plan comes two years after the former scheme was scrapped following the General Election.
But Labour town and district councillor Les Sibley questioned whether the plans were “deliverable”, and said with any development infrastructure must come first.
The vision reveals a new 41-hectare development site for housing and employment at farmland, next to Langford Village, off the A41.
Currently 150 homes have been included alongside a high-tech business park creating 1,092 jobs.
It comes hot on the heels of two other business parks, off the A41 Oxford Road, and Howes Lane, that could jointly generate a further 5,000 jobs.
Cherwell has also made a u-turn over MOD proposals at Graven Hill, including 1,900 homes in the plan on that site.
In 2010 the council ruled out any housing development there for another 16 years, saying the Bicester eco settlement would cater for the town’s future housing needs.
Part of the MOD’s proposal is a supply chain logistic base securing up to 620 jobs and a business park that could create 2,470 jobs.
Projections for development of the 5,000 home north west Bicester eco town have lowered, with only 1,794 built by 2031. It was previously expected to be complete by 2034.
A further 650 homes have been allocated at Kingsmere, off Middleton Stoney Road. A new relief road south east of Bicester, and details of what could be built at RAF Bicester, are also in the report.
The council said it supports employment, a nursing or residential home, a hotel, education, sport and leisure, and the development of a museum dedicated to RAF Bomber Command.
In the report, Cherwell’s leader Barry Wood said the strategy was to focus housing growth in Bicester and Banbury.
He said: “We aim to create , boost housing in sustainable locations; to mitigate and adapt to climate change.”
Regarding the eco town, the council said build levels had changed due to the recession.
Mr Sibley said: “It’s all right putting it on paper, but is it deliverable? The economic climate suggests a slow-down.
“My real concern is making sure we get proper infrastructure before housing and commercial development.”