A development blueprint to deliver new homes and community facilities in Sedgefield, County Durham, will go on to the planning application stage after receiving support from the majority local residents.
More than 170 people attended a two-day consultation event held by investment business, the ESRG Group, on plans for 450 homes and community facilities on two sites off Beacon Lane and Salters Lane.
A total of 62% said they supported the proposals - although a number of concerns were raised, including the lack of bungalows and the pressure the development would place on schools and other facilities.
David Evans, director of the ESRG Group, said: “We’re really pleased by the number of people who took the time to attend our public exhibition. There were a number of misconceptions about the scheme prior to the consultation and I’m pleased to say that many warmed to our plans after seeing them first-hand.
“Our proposals have the potential to create future jobs, build quality homes and deliver extra-care for older residents for the town. However, we appreciate that there are some concerns. “Having listened to resident feedback, we are now looking to update our proposals ahead of submitting a planning application at the end of May. We are exploring many of the issues raised in detail and will look to incorporate a number of high quality bungalows as well as additional facilities for young people into our overall proposal to meet some of the needs outlined by residents at the event.”
The plans for land off Beacon Lane include 218 homes made-up of executive, family and affordable properties within a landscaped setting, alongside a 60 bed retirement complex.
A further 232 homes, including 60 retirement apartments, would also be delivered off Salters Lane, the sale of which would help to fund further community facilities. A contemporary new commercial facility would also provide a business hub for nurturing local entrepreneurial talent and delivering specialist skills training.
Designed with support from North East practice Gradon Architecture and the Newcastle-based Haylock Planning and Design, the proposals meet the identified need for more housing and community facilities in the town.
Graham McDarby, design director at Gradon, said: “We have put in place a carefully designed blueprint that has been sensitively designed to retain Sedgefield’s unique community feel, delivering quality facilities and offering a better alternative to a standard housing development.”