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Homes can start being built at a brand new neighbourhood in Crawley

Published date : 22 April 2014

Work can start on building homes at Crawley’s 14th neighbourhood due to the legal agreement being signed between all public and private sector partners.

Planning permission for the first phase of new homes was granted in March for a brand new neighbourhood in Crawley called Forge Wood. The development is made possible due to a deal brokered between the public and private sector to get it moving.

A consortium of Taylor Wimpey, Persimmon Homes, Crawley Borough Council and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) are the driving force behind Crawley’s brand new neighbourhood which already has outline planning permission for 1,900 new homes, employment, retail, and community areas, plus a new primary school.

As part of the deal the HCA, as joint landowner, is making its land available to Taylor Wimpey and Persimmon with no up-front cost in order that significant and essential infrastructure works can be carried out - an expensive piece of work that has previously held up the development of the site. This includes work on Junction 10 of the M23, bridging works and on-site infrastructure needed for a development of this scale.

Ken Glendinning, Head of Area, explains:

“Part of our role is to unlock public land to free it up where we can for new housing.  This site is a really good example of where Government land can be used to enable the private sector to get on and build homes, simply by working in partnership and taking a longer term view on costs and values.”

More than 200 homes are set to be built during the first phase. A total of 40% of the housing across the whole site will be made available to those on the housing needs list; the rest will be a mix of private sector homes. Crawley Borough Council will be delivering the affordable homes themselves as part of the agreement.

Peter Browning, Director of Transformation and Housing, said:

“Plans for this new neighbourhood have taken a long time to get to this stage so I’m delighted that work is soon to start. It’s been a complicated process but by working together we’re bringing forward much needed housing and infrastructure for Crawley.

“Crawley Borough Council is acquiring more than 530 affordable homes across the four phases of this development and I’m delighted with that;. It represents a six per cent increase in the council’s current 8,100 housing stock, all of which will benefit local people most in need.”

Developers Taylor Wimpey and Persimmon recently started the infrastructure work for a neighbourhood centre at the site, which is bordered by Crawley Avenue and Balcombe Road in Tinsley Green, which will include a community hall.