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South Canterbury's 4,000-home planning application biggest in city's history

Developers have now lodged Canterbury’s largest planning application in history – a vast “garden suburb” of 4,000 homes.

Dubbed Mountfield Park, the scheme in south Canterbury would see the city expand by an area four times the size of the historic centre.

Corinthian Land’s proposals – now submitted to the city council – show a huge residential community on what is currently 560 acres of green space.

View from the New Dover Road
View from the New Dover Road

If granted permission, the scheme would stretch from Canterbury’s southern edge as far as the village of Bridge.

Images released exclusively to us show how the future development could look.

A civic square, flanked by three and four-storey buildings, can be pinpointed on Corinthian’s latest masterplan, also revealed today.

Alongside thousands of contemporary homes, Mountfield Park would offer shops, office space, sports pitches, two primary schools and a potential new site for Kent and Canterbury Hospital.

The latest Mountfield Park masterplan
The latest Mountfield Park masterplan

New public squares and green spaces are to be created, and a new road system.

A new park and ride scheme would provide access to the city centre, and the entire development offers direct access to the A2 via a new interchange.

John Trotter, development director for Corinthian Land, said: “This will not be a housing estate, but a vibrant and well-supported community that will be developed gradually as the demand dictates.

“We hope it will become a well-integrated part of the city.”

Planned along “garden city”principles, Mountfield Park would deliver 1,200 affordable homes, 70,000 sq m of business space, parkland and woodland, doctors’ surgeries, and community meeting spaces.

Proposed housing
Proposed housing

Mr Trotter said: “This planning application represents eight years of detailed work and preparation, with every aspect taken into account.

“This is not a speculative application. We have invested heavily to ensure that this proposal is the best option for Canterbury, enabling it to develop in the future in a way that reflects and complements its illustrious past.”

Mountfield Park is presently farmland, with small orchards and a park and ride.

Bisected by the New Dover Road, it begins from the Barton housing area, spreading south as far as the A2 and west to Nackington Road.

Proposed housing along North Downs Way
Proposed housing along North Downs Way

Canterbury City Council has earmarked sites across the district to accommodate 16,000 new homes over the next 15 years, of which Mountfield Park will be by far the largest.

Should planning permission be granted, the developer aims to begin initial site work in January 2017, with the first 100 homes completed by March 2018.

The council says it is processing the application and letters are being sent to around 250 neighbours, there will be extensive site notices and a public notice in the Kentish Gazette on March 31. Comments are welcome from people across the city, not just those who would be directly affected by the proposals.

View the full application on Canterbury City Council's website canterbury.gov.uk ref CA/16/00600

Scheme would be four times the size of the historic city centre
Scheme would be four times the size of the historic city centre

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