Fakenham masterplan includes 900 homes
Chris Hill THE first glimpse of how Fakenham could look after its biggest expansion for decades has been revealed through a proposed “masterplan”.District planners are preparing Local Development Framework (LDF) documents which could become the blueprint for where houses, businesses and leisure facilities will be built in the next 15 years.
THE first glimpse of how Fakenham could look after its biggest expansion for decades has been revealed through a proposed “masterplan”.
District planners are preparing Local Development Framework (LDF) documents which could become the blueprint for where houses, businesses and leisure facilities will be built in the next 15 years.
They identified Fakenham as one of north Norfolk's best opportunities for growth, with an area to the south of the A148 bypass earmarked for 900 homes.
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It was included in a six-week public consultation which ended in July, although few specific details were then available on the early plans.
But while the LDF policy proposals continue their long journey towards government approval, landowners on the Fakenham site have unveiled a draft design brief for the area's possible layout.
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The masterplan shows how planned new neighbourhoods could be arranged alongside an industrial estate, a new school, a market place and a possible hotel - all surrounded by parks and open spaces.
It was commissioned by Trinity College in Cambridge - which owns more than 80pc of the land - and could form the basis of future planning applications once the principle of development has been agreed.
Polly Wake, senior planning officer for North Norfolk District Council, said the public would get a chance to voice opinions on the plan later this year before councillors decided whether to adopt it. “There has been nothing on this scale in north Norfolk for many years so it will be very exciting to see the creation of these new facilities,” she said.
“It is a real opportunity to provide a mixed-use community to the north of Fakenham. The balance is important because we want to make sure people can live, work and meet their day-to-day needs in an area close to hand, without having to travel great distances.
“The plan demonstrates the landowners' commitment and gives more details as to how it could look on the ground.”
The masterplan also allows for “landmark features” like public art, green corridors for wildlife and would incorporate improved bus services and cycle routes into the town centre.
Mrs Wake said phased construction could start as early as 2012 but the “very long-term” plans still needed to overcome several hurdles including a current lack of capacity at Fakenham's sewage works to cope with the extra housing.
The document has not yet been given any formal status by the district council, but is due to be discussed by its LDF working party on Monday.
Statutory bodies like the Environment Agency, Anglian Water and highways officers will be consulted before a public consultation, which is due to happen in the winter.
For information on the plans, contact North Norfolk District Council's planning team on 01263 516318.