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Decision details

Lot 2, North West Cambridge 14/1722/REM

Decision Maker: Joint Development Control Committee - Cambridge Fringes

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


The Committee received a reserved matters application for ‘Lot 2’ located within land between Huntingdon Road, Madingley Road, and the M11, North West Cambridge.


The Senior Planning Officer presented the reserved matters application for 264 key worker units comprising 100 one bedroom units, 161 two bedroom units and 3 four bedroom units, 1,983sqm of commercial uses A1, A3 and A4, flexible social space and ancillary estate office, alongside car and cycle parking, landscaping, public realm, utilities and associated ancillary structures, pursuant to outline approval 13/1402/S73.


The Committee noted the updates published in the amendment sheet, including revised conditions:


Condition 1 – Minor alteration to trigger:


Prior to the commencement of development, except for any underground enabling works, of each individual building hereby approved and identified below samples of the materials to be used in the construction…


Condition 2 – Minor alteration to trigger:


Prior to the commencement of development, except for any underground enabling works, of each individual area of public and private realm approved and identified below samples of the materials…


Condition 11 - Revised plan number:


NWC1- TLA- LB- ZZZ- XX- DRG- LD- 0305


The Committee made the following comments in response to the report.

  i.  Discussion of the merits of the application design. Most Members welcomed it.

  ii.  Some wider discussion regarding Areas of Major Change and Green Belt Policy.

  iii.  The phasing of developments meant that appropriate commercial and residential infrastructure was implemented at an early stage with appropriate levels of housing.

  iv.  Restrictions on vehicle delivery times were welcomed.

  v.  The provision of key worker tied housing reduced some of the demand for affordable market housing. There was a recognised housing need for ‘post-docs’, to encourage them to come to Cambridge from around the world. Noted that the overarching strategy had been addressed at outline application stage.


In response to Members’ questions the Principal Planner and the Senior Planning Officer said the following:

  i.  The courtyard areas were secluded and semi-private in nature, so people from outside the development were unlikely to visit them as public open spaces. The areas were not gated, so people (ie non-residents) could walk through.

  ii.  62 cycle parking spaces were available for local centre visitors. An additional 84 were allocated for the food store (separate application). These would cater for different bike sizes.

  iii.  Some on-street car parking would be available in phase 1 of the development. Phase 1 had a Parking Strategy setting out allocated parking for key worker and market housing, plus visitors to these. Parking would be controlled by Traffic Regulation Orders in primary and secondary streets to prevent ‘fly parking’ by commuters.

  iv.  The Ridgeway cycle route ‘quality setts’ were designed to encourage cyclists to slow down in areas where the public realm would be shared with pedestrians, the surface material would not physically slow down cyclists.

  v.  Officers anticipated there would be sufficient retail outlets as part of the phase 1 development. The site only required complementary facilities, the food store was over and above the required provision.

  vi.  The rills were expected to be dry for most of the year. Species of plants for the development were chosen with this in mind.

 vii.  The University of Cambridge was responsible for managing rills to prevent them becoming clogged with litter. The University had a good public realm management record. Most rills were located in private areas. An informal request could be made to the University of Cambridge asking them to ensure the rills did not become clogged with litter, but this could not be made into a formal planning condition.

viii.  Public areas, access ways and courtyards were overlooked by buildings to discourage crime. There was provision in adjacent Lots 1 and 4 for youth and play facilities. S106 would trigger areas coming forward when sufficient housing was in place (youth and play facilities were already approved by JDCC).

  ix.  The Applicant had undertaken a letterbox study to ensure a majority of property letterboxes were accessible from the street. Deliveries could also be made to people’s front doors eg items ordered on-line.

  x.  The mix of housing for phase 1 was based on immediate key worker needs. Therefore most were 1-2 bedrooms, with a few 4 bedroom units in shared houses. 3-4 bedroom houses were expected as part of market house proposals in the remainder of phase 1.

  xi.  Key worker housing was only available to university staff who met eligibility criteria. This policy had been in place since 2003.


The Head of Planning Services noted Councillor’s concerns regarding tied housing, but reassured them issues had been considered at previous JDCC committees through the outline application and S106.


 xii.  The impact of building heights had been considered in the design to avoid the creation of wind tunnels.

xiii.  Public transport provision would change over time, but a Sunday bus service was expected. The Principal Planner undertook to check public transport facilities and inform JDCC Members.


The Committee:


Resolved (by 13 votes to 0 with 2 abstentions) to grant the reserved matters application in accordance with the officer recommendation, for the reasons set out in the officer report, and subject to the amended conditions recommended by the officers.

Report author: John Evans

Publication date: 06/02/2015

Date of decision: 21/01/2015

Decided at meeting: 21/01/2015 - Joint Development Control Committee - Cambridge Fringes

Accompanying Documents: