East Devon District Councillor has approved the Cranbrook, the district’s new community. The approval unlocks a £16.6 million investment in the project from the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), bringing with it a boost for much needed affordable housing in the area.
The detailed designs for the first 1,120 homes on the approved site off Honiton Road, Rockbeare, were given the go ahead on Tuesday, March 8.
The project already has outline planning permission that was granted following the completion of a Section 106 legal agreement, signed by all the public and private sector partners involved, which will ensure the delivery of vital social and community and transport infrastructure during the early stages of the project.
As a result of the decision, the HCA has approved investment of £16.6m for the delivery of 300 affordable homes and infrastructure work which will support the wider development of a further 700 private homes to be sold on the open market. The decision takes the total amount of money invested by the HCA in the wider Cranbrook development to more than £33.5m and the level of public sector funding in the scheme to around £56m.
It allows developer partners Persimmon, Taylor Wimpey, Redrow and Hallam Land to begin the development within weeks. It also helps improve access to affordable housing in East Devon, where statistics show that house prices are more than 12 times the average household income for the area.
The affordable homes will be jointly managed by Sovereign Housing Group and Devon and Cornwall Housing Association.
East Devon District Council wants to see Cranbrook built to the highest possible standards of sustainabilty and by doing so become a trail-blazer for low-carbon mass open market housing developments.
Cranbrook and the neighbouring Skypark will be served by an energy centre supplying both heat and power to homes and businesses. This will be run using biomass fuel in the future.
It is estimated that the biomass Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant to generate electricity and heat for the first 2,900 homes at Cranbrook, could provide an estimated 10,000 tonnes of CO2 saving per year.
This has been achieved with funding support from the HCA’s Low Carbon Infrastructure Fund; the Growth Fund; New Community Partners; E.ON and St. Modwen.
When this is achieved, Cranbrook will be the first mass open market development in the country to provide a district heating scheme on this scale.
(from a press release)