Proposals for 2,500 homes in Filton could get green light next year, with backing from Airbus, Rolls-Royce and BAE Systems

Gazette Series: Proposals for 2,500 homes in Filton could get green light next year Proposals for 2,500 homes in Filton could get green light next year

WORK on the first of thousands of new homes could start later next year if a revised mixed use masterplan for the former Filton airfield is approved.

Consultation is set to start in 2014 to bring people’s views on the blueprint together before South Gloucestershire planners are asked to give their approval.

Proposals for the 365-acre site show it could eventually provide up to 9,000 jobs, as well as some 2,500 homes. The housing would form a major part of the overall 5,700 planned for the new Cribbs and Patchway neighbourhood area.

Most of the jobs will be provided by companies linked to the aviation industry, although major existing firms such as Airbus and Rolls-Royce will be able to expand if necessary.

Other workers will be needed in new schools, a health centre, shops and community and sports facilities.

The airfield was closed a year ago by owners BAE Systems, bringing more than 100 years of aviation history to an end.

It was sold in a reported £120 million deal to London-based investment and development company Bridgehouse Capital, which has since been working with BAE Systems on the masterplan for the site.

Bridgehouse will also be a major contributor to a new museum for Concorde and the Bristol Aero Collection on the land.

The redevelopment of the airfield forms part of the recently adopted South Gloucestershire Council core strategy document – its blueprint for the area up to 2027 – with Filton one of three new enterprise areas that together have the potential to provide thousands of new jobs. The others are Severnside and Emersons Green.

The council approved the document after last month’s clearance by planning inspector Paul Crysell, who decided it was sound and suitable for adoption, subject to a number of final modifications.

Mr Crysell said 28,355 new homes for the district was an appropriate minimum level during the lifetime of the plan and he found the arguments in favour of redeveloping the airfield “compelling”.

But while removing the need in the short term to encroach on the district’s green belt, he said building houses on the airfield was “not a substitute for sites being promoted elsewhere”.

Among other areas to expand will be Thornbury where there is local opposition to hundreds of new homes.

But Mr Crysell said: “More limited development at Thornbury will assist in meeting local needs with the modest increase in population helping to support services and invigorate the town centre."

The town is set to get 500 new homes at Park Farm, with a further 300 allowed for land at Morton Way as the result of a planning appeal.

Mr Crysell said: “In light of the appeal decision, however, I consider there is little justification for further development at Thornbury in the short term.”

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