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The first outline planning application has been made for the large-scale Southern Extension housing development in Gillingham.

Developers Welbeck Land have put in an application for outline permission to build 961 houses on a 2,642 sq.m site between Shaftesbury Road and New Road.

In its application to North Dorset District Council, who are the planning authority, the developers state that the proposed development ‘will comprise a residential – led mixed use scheme …. and land to facilitate the extension to St Mary the Virgin primary school’.

Welbeck then list the benefits of the scheme as including:

-the delivery of market and affordable homes;
– high quality and sustainable development ;
– a mix of non – residential uses to serve the development which will assist in creating a sense of community;
– a mixed use local centre which will create new job opportunities;
land to enable the extension of St Mary the Virgin Primary School ;
– provision of public open space and substantial landscaping ;
– a permeable network of pedestrian and cycle routes connected to the existing network

The fact that an application has finally been made for the site will come as a relief to local planners as the Southern Extension development – which will eventually include up to 1800 homes – has been beset by delays at a time when North Dorset needs new homes to meet the local housing supply shortage.

Last September Welbeck said that if all now runs according to plan they hope to have the first tranche of 100 or so homes ready to live in within two years.

Details of the application can be found via www.dorsetforyou.gov.uk.

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