Site LPS 8: South Cheshire Growth Village, South East Crewe
A new sustainable settlement will be delivered over the Local Plan Strategy period. This will be achieved through:
- The delivery of around 650 new homes. The density and scale of the development should reflect the sensitivities and relationships of different parts of the site and should be directly informed by a detailed heritage impact assessment that will inform and shape a development brief, masterplan and design code for the site. This should have special regard to the relationship to heritage assets and their settings and their collective character and significance and what this rich heritage context contributes to the character of the site and to its wider setting;
- The provision of a new mixed-use local (village) centre, with a range of uses, including:
- Appropriate retail provision to meet local needs;
- Community meeting facility and a new village square and enhanced public realm elsewhere;
- Sports and leisure facilities;
- The provision of open space including sports pitches, multi use games area, outdoor gym, equipped children's play space and facilities for teenagers;
- The provision of pedestrian and cycle links to the new primary school and wider adjacent Basford East site;
- The creation of wildlife habitats, including those for protected species in accordance with detailed ecological assessments and management proposals; and
- The incorporation of the following green infrastructure:
- In the area to the south of Old Park Road (outside the historic parkland of Crewe Hall), retention and/or creation of hedgerow boundaries with native woodland tree species and associated landscaping along all site boundaries on routes into the site and alongside the railway corridor and for all boundaries adjacent or in proximity to heritage assets (where those are appropriate to the setting of the heritage assets) to offset detrimental visual impact to the open countryside and the setting of designated heritage assets;
- Parkland restoration to the north of Old Park Road in the historic parkland of Crewe Hall (including the registered park and garden) would include the retention and restoration of the shelterbelt, clumps of trees and other parkland features;
- Additionally, the retention, where possible, of hedgerows and trees within the site that have a cumulative screening impact on development and contribute to the habitat value of the site;Other targeted landscape mitigation as set out in the Heritage Impact Assessment (CEC 2016) and summarised under part b of ‘Site Specific Principles of Development’ below;
- The creation of drainage ponds that have visual and habitat potential, allotments and a community orchard.
Site Specific Principles of Development
- Development should incorporate green infrastructure and reflect 'The Green Infrastructure Action Plan for Crewe' (TEP, 2012) including tree planting and hedgerows in historically appropriate locations and the creation of green spaces, including those linking green infrastructure and providing for safe and secure pedestrian and cycle routes that should be integrated into the development proposals.
- Within this green infrastructure framework, specific landscape mitigation shall be provided in accordance with the recommendations of the Heritage Impact Assessment (CEC 2016) the details of which are to be further developed through the preparation and adoption of a Design Brief and via the Masterplan and Design Code for the site. These key elements of mitigation as set out in the Heritage Impact Assessment (CEC 2016) entail the following:
- Provision of sufficient areas of open space to the south and east of Hollyhedge Farmhouse to maintain its open rural setting;
- Provision of a substantial landscaped edge to the south/south east of the development parcel immediately to the south of the railway line (on the opposite side of Main Road to Hollyhedge Farm). This should combine a mix of copse and individual tree planting contained by a new native hedgerow. At the point nearest Hollyhedge Farm in the south eastern corner, a copse should be created. It should include woodland planting on the western edge of the parcel, tying in with the woodland buffer of the Basford East site;
- Provision of open space and appropriate parkland landscaping alongside the access/drive and to the south of Crewe Hall Farmhouse and associated barns;
- Provision of an area of greenspace to the east of Stowford hamlet, retaining the existing pond, trees and other positive planting as a key space within the development;
- Reinstatement of historic shelter belt planting to define the edges of the former historic parkland to the east of the access to the Crewe Hall Enterprise Centre, immediately to the north of Old Park Road, and to the east of the entrance/access to Crewe Hall Farm. The detail of the shelterbelt planting is to be based on compelling historical evidence of the original planting scheme for the parkland; and
- Parkland restoration of the parcel of agricultural land immediately to the north of Stowford hamlet between the drive to Crewe Hall and the access to Crewe Hall Enterprise Centre (immediately to the west of the South Cheshire Growth Village site). The detail of this should be based on compelling historical evidence of the parkland planting scheme.
- The development will be expected to provide contributions towards education provision and provide key linkages through to a school to be provided at Basford East, along with the wider Basford East area. This should include both pedestrian and cycle links.
- The development should be comprehensively masterplanned with a detailed design code to ensure the following:
- The creation of appropriate linkages and connectivity between this site and Basford East, Crewe town centre and railway station and the M6;
- A high quality of development is secured by ensuring that new development is appropriately located, and is of an appropriate density and scale in its relationship to heritage assets, including their setting, principally the grade I listed Crewe Hall, the registered park and garden at Crewe Hall, Hollyhedge Farmhouse and other groups of listed buildings to minimise the impact upon the heritage assets;
- To ensure the development relates appropriately to its wider context and the wider setting of the heritage assets, including consideration of key views into and out of the site, landform, key approaches into the site and the wider landscape character of the countryside; and
- The character of the two distinct areas should be maintained, i.e. the parkland character should be enhanced within the historic parkland of Crewe Hall to the north of Old Park Road (including the registered park) and the agricultural landscape to the south of the parkland should be reinforced. This should be based on compelling historical evidence.
- As an integral part of formulating the development brief, Masterplan and Design Code, a full assessment of the significance of the heritage assets and their setting that are affected by the South Cheshire Growth Village development will need to be undertaken, and the findings of the assessment should be reflected in the development brief, masterplan and design requirements set out in the Design Code.
- Improvements to existing and provision of new pedestrian and cycle links to new and existing residential and employment areas, shops, schools and health facilities.
- Contributions to improvements to existing and the provision of new public transport links to Crewe Railway Station, Crewe town centre and local villages.
- The Local Plan Strategy Site will provide affordable housing in line with the policy requirements set out in Policy SC 5 'Affordable Homes'.
- The land within the registered park and garden of Crewe Hall and the Green Belt will be excluded from the site boundary but appropriate specific landscape mitigation measures, as set out in the Heritage Impact Assessment (CEC, 2016) will be required outside of the site boundary.
- On site provision, or where appropriate, relevant contributions towards education, health, green infrastructure, open space and community facilities.
- The development would be expected to contribute towards and / or facilitate road infrastructure improvements in the area, including, A500 link capacity improvements, A5020 Weston Road junction and junction 16 of the M6.
- Potential for self build and adaptable units to be incorporated into the masterplan and design code for the site.
- An appropriately designed green buffer will be provided between the site and the village of Weston.
- The area has a 'typical' Cheshire Landscape, characterised by a flat topography broken up by a dense network of field hedges interspersed with mature hedgerow trees. The development must respond to this sensitive landscape setting.
- Pre-determination cultural heritage desk based assessment is required, to determine the need for further evaluation and any mitigation that will be required.
- Future masterplanning must ensure that connectivity for pedestrians and cyclists is maximised and that high quality cycle and pedestrian links are provided to the adjacent mixed use site of Basford East, including the new primary school.
- Financial contributions will be required towards the provision of a new primary school on the nearby Basford East site LPS 2.
- Provision of habitat for protected species, if required.
- Noise and air quality assessments, if required, relating to the railway and main roads passing through or adjoining the site.
15.127 The allocation proposes a new sustainable village which provides distinctive new housing in a high quality landscape setting. Existing woodland and vernacular estate architecture set the tone for the creation of new residential community which compliments the current housing offer in Crewe. The site will help meet the needs of Crewe's growing population and labour force demand, to support the retention and growth of a highly skilled workforce.
15.128 The provision of this site will support growth in Crewe and the aspirations of the Northern Gateway in improving local infrastructure, reducing the loss of skilled people to other areas and increasing local expenditure on goods and services leading to further jobs being created. The South Cheshire Growth Village will contribute to delivering the vision for Crewe as a national significant economic centre and a sought after place in South Cheshire.
15.129 This site will be able to take advantage of the interchange planned at Crewe for the current preferred route for the High Speed Rail 2 network. The council will work in partnership with the Duchy of Lancaster, the Highways Agency, Environment Agency and other statutory consultees to deliver improvements to the A500.
15.130 The site has good accessibility to the M6 via the A500, which will be improved by the Crewe Green Link Road. The council will work in partnership with the Duchy of Lancaster, the Highways Agency, Environment Agency and other statutory consultees to deliver improvements to the A500.
15.131 The provision of new and the improvement of existing green infrastructure are of paramount importance. This will assist in improving the health and wellbeing of residents, as well as enhancing the environment of the town and reflects the findings of the Green Infrastructure Action Plan for Crewe (TEP, 2012) and will also help deliver the aspirations of Northern Gateway.
15.132 A new pedestrian and cycle link will be created to Basford East. This must provide a safe and secure environment for children to travel to school. Priority should be given to a route on the north of the Railway line, combined with a cycle / footbridge. Only if after thorough exploration a northern route proves unfeasible, will an access south of the railway be permitted. This could take the form of an all-weather lit route. No vehicular link to Basford East will be permitted.
15.133 The future development brief, masterplanning and design coding must be informed by a full 'assessment of significance' as required by the NPPF as well as by the recommendations in the Heritage Impact Assessment (CEC, 2016). This must assess the significance of the heritage assets and their settings and seek to minimise the impact of the development upon the historic environment by delivering high quality design and mitigation as set out in this policy. It is extremely important that high quality development, with a strong sense of place is secured, hence the requirement for a development brief, masterplan and comprehensive design code.
15.134 Adjacent land lies within the Green Gap and Green Belt, along with the grade I listed Crewe Hall and registered park and garden (grade II and on the Heritage at Risk Register). It is important that the visual impact of development on these areas is minimised by appropriate landscaping, parkland restoration and the retention of existing trees and hedgerows. The area south of the village, either side of Main Road, Weston, is particularly sensitive, including its relationship to Hollyhedge Farmhouse a grade II* listed building, and its setting. The land retained around Hollyhedge Farmhouse (as defined in the Heritage Impact Assessment CEC 2016) shall remain undeveloped. A high quality landscape scheme, with appropriate, strong planting on the boundaries of the development and substantial areas of open space should be provided in the vicinity of Hollyhedge Farmhouse, to reduce the impact of the development upon its setting.
15.135 It is important that this site contributes to highway network improvements, to ensure highway network improvements, to ensure highway safety and deliver the aspirations of the Northern Gateway.
15.136 The area of protected open space is located within the Green Belt. As well as providing for open space and recreation to meet the needs of the village, it will be accompanied by supporting facilities compatible with Green Belt Status. The detailed boundaries of the Green Gap will be reviewed and could further assist in separating the Village from Weston.
15.137 An archaeological assessment will be required, to understand the impact on undesignated heritage assets and to minimise or mitigate harm. This should be informed by consultation with the Local Authority's archaeological advisers.
15.138 Habitat for protected species must be provided if required.
15.139 Any replacement and/or new sports provision should be in accordance with an adopted up to date and robust Playing Pitch Strategy and with Policy SC 2 ‘Indoor and Outdoor Sports Facilities’.
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