Plans for Waterbeach New Town East development pass major hurdle

Plans for the 4,500-home Waterbeach New Town East development have been approved by South Cambridgeshire District Council’s planning committee.

The New Town would also feature retail space, two primary schools, a secondary school, a sixth-form centre and more.

The vote delegates authority to the council’s director of planning to grant outline planning permission subject to agreeing conditions and community contributions to be made by the developer, and also subject to the decision being referred to the secretary of state for housing, communities and local government, Robert Jenrick.

The application was recommended for approval by planning officers, and the committee voted by six votes to five in favour.

The decision follows the granting of permission in 2018 to the same developer to relocate Waterbeach Station to the new town, and the decision in 2019 to grant outline permission to Urban&Civic for a 6,500-home development and community space and amenities on the Waterbeach Barracks on the western half of the site new town site.

RLW Estates’ proposal for Waterbeach New Town East includes 4,500 homes, retail space, two primary schools, a secondary school, a sixth-form centre and community facilities and public spaces and parks, and brings the total number of homes expected to be built in the new town to 11,000.

Sire aerial of Waterbeach New Town East proposal
(Image: LDA Design/RLW Estates/Google Maps)

Outline planning permission grants approval and sets parameters for the concept and general principles put forward by a developer, and is a significant step in the process.

But a reserved matters application – dealing with much more detailed issues of design and layout – will still require approval before construction can begin.

The approval is also conditional on a new station being built and open for use to serve the new town and other conditions.

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