Developers Legal & General and Gisborne, in partnership with landowners the Church Commissioners for England, have launched their consultation on plans to redevelop Bushfield Camp. They say the development will be “a best-in-class mixed use scheme [that] has the potential to attract major brands looking for new headquarters to the county from sectors including life science, academia, media and the health sector.“
We’re sure that Cycle Winchester supporters will have a variety of views about the development, but – as usual – our focus as a campaign group is to ensure that, if redevelopment goes ahead, it will be supportive of our goal to make Winchester better by bike. Given the site’s location, near to NCN23, South Park and Ride, Shawford Station, and a major supermarket, planning decisions will be crucially important in achieving the needed shift from private cars to active travel.
Winchester City Council’s local policy for the site provides us with a strong basis to press our case. It requires that any development:
- promotes non-vehicular access to and within the site, through the creation of new routes and extensions/diversions of existing routes to ensure that the site integrates with surrounding areas and to minimise and mitigate its impact on the strategic highway network;
- exploits the site’s proximity to the Winchester South Park and Ride site to access the site without reliance on the private car;
We are pleased that the prospective developers invited Cycle Winchester to an early discussion on their plans. We presented some suggestions regarding cycle routes through and to/from the site, which the developers told us aligned closely with their own initial concept. They have now opened a first public consultation, which we encourage Cycle Winchester supporters to participate in, especially if you cycle in the vicinity.
What we think
If this development happens, it provides some good opportunities for filling in gaps in cycle routes south of Winchester. Some are within the site the developers own, others could be paid for as part of the planning agreement. As this is meant to be an employment site with businesses based there, it’s really important that the developers make it as easy as possible for people who work there to get there by foot, bike, train and/or bus rather than adding to the already heavy traffic on that side of Winchester. That means providing safe, useful, linked-up, good-quality cycling and walking routes that can be used year-round in all weathers.
Our initial list of ideas:
- A cycle route from the north through the site to the new development, to encourage workers and visitors to cycle or walk from town or the station.
- Cycle routes running parallel to St Cross Road and Badger Farm Road, providing safe links from Badger Farm and St Cross to the Hockley Link roundabout
- Provide recreational cycle paths within the Drovers Field area. Great for kids and new cyclists to gain experience in a safe environment; also nice for a family ride.
- Crossings on Badger Farm Road to link the site with the paths and bridleways to the west.
- Provide the funding for cycling improvements around the Hockley Link Roundabout. Safe, controlled cycle crossings to link up routes form Badger Farm and St Cross (see above) with the Viaduct Way and with National Cycle Route 23 as it heads south towards the southern Park & Ride and Shawford Station.
- Provide the funding for cycle route improvements along National Cycle Route 23 at least as far as Shawford.
- Provide the funding to improve the neglected bridleway running between Whiteshute Ridge and the site.
How to join the consultation
Visit the website announcing the scheme here.
Leave feedback on the interactive map. You can create your own pins, or you can respond to existing pins. Cycle Winchester has already placed a number of pins, so feel free to add your ‘Like’.
There are two ‘in-person’ consultation events:
- Friday 18th November, 3pm – 7pm, Shawford Parish Hall, Pearson Lane, SO21 2AA
- Sunday 20th November, 10am – 2pm, Badger Farm, Community Centre, SO22 4QB