Bee Bee gets busy with 3.5m sq ft Northants sites
By Stuart Watson
Developer prepares planning applications for schemes near Kettering and Wellingborough.
Alfred Buller's Bee Bee Developments is set to accelerate its development programme in Northamptonshire with plans for more than 15,000 houses and around 3.5m sq ft (325,000 sq m) of commercial space.
Bee Bee intends to submit a raft of big planning applications before the end of March for schemes near Kettering and Wellingborough.
Bee Bee has been land banking in north Northamptonshire - identified as an area for housing growth - for several years.
To the north of Wellingborough, Bee Bee plans Pulse Park, a 3m sq ft (279,000 sq m) business park, as well as 5,000 houses at Castle Ridge.
Buller said Bee Bee is in talks with a university to take space there.
In Wellingborough Town Centre, the company will develop the Main Street scheme to provide a central business district with 450,000 sq ft (41,800 sq m) of offices, restaurants, a theatre and a railway station.
An application was lodged in January for 1,000 flats.
Bee Bee will submit two further applications, each for 5,000 houses in Kettering's eastern expansion area in a joint venture with Buccleuch Property. It also proposes a relief road to reduce traffic on the A14 near the town.
The office development is on a greater scale than any previously proposed for Northamptonshire. Buller argued that the applications were aimed at creating a new business community in the area over the next 15 years.
‘With any other conurbation there is always a business park,' he said. ‘These applications are trying to address the region's shortcomings and give it more of a city offer.'
Bee Bee has already secured outline planning consent at Priors Hall in Corby after East Northamptonshire Council followed Corby Borough Council in approving the 950 acre (384 ha) scheme, which crosses the boundaries of the two local authorities, in December.
It will provide more employment land and a further 5,100 houses, bringing Bee Bee's total in the county to more than 20,000 dwellings.
A school, the Foster & Partners-designed Corby Academy, will be built on an adjacent site.
Bob Lane, chief executive of urban regeneration company Catalyst Corby - which is likely to be merged with local delivery partnership North Northants Together to create a new local delivery vehicle for the area - described Bee Bee's plans as ‘great news'.
‘The momentum created by Sustainable Communities means north Northamptonshire is buzzing,' he said. ‘People are realising that we can deliver a huge amount relatively quickly.
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