Go-ahead for 4,500-home Leicester urban extension

Plans to deliver a 4,500-home urban extension to the north east of Leicester have been given the green light after planners concluded that the benefits of the 'comprehensively planned' development outweighed the harms identified.

Leicester: urban extension plans approved
Leicester: urban extension plans approved

Charnwood Borough Council last week granted outline consent for the mixed-use residential-led scheme on the 360-hectare site.

Alongside new homes, the scheme also plans to include employment land, schools, healthcare facilities, two local centres, a district centre and open spaces.

According to a planning report, the site has been identified in Charnwood's planning policies as suitable for an urban extension.

The report also noted that the adopted Leicester City Core Strategy identified the location as an "area of search for [a sustainable urban extension] outside the city boundary".

The report said that Charnwood cannot currently demonstrate a five-year supply of housing, and accepts that it has a "record of persistent under delivery".

It said scheme would deliver up to 4,500 homes over a 15-year delivery period, and provide 955 within the first five years.

"In the context of the need to significantly boost housing supply this is a significant benefit of the scheme," it said.

However, concerns were raised about the proposals, with objections from around 115 local residents, and three petitions. Fears included that the development would result in "excessive levels of traffic", and would have a negative impact on the character of the countryside.

However, the planning report concluded: "It is considered that for this planning application, proposing a comprehensively planned, sustainable development including benefits such as schools, a district centre, a wide choice of housing, a significant and immediate contribution to the council’s land supply and other infrastructure contributions, clearly outweighs any resulting harms that have been identified."

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