A council leader has assured residents of Lutterworth that a massive development of 2,750 new homes in the town will bring ‘up to £1billion’ of investment, along with new schools and parks. There will also be new spaces for businesses, creating around 2,500 jobs in the city.
Lutterworth currently has a population of around 9,500, but this will increase rapidly over the next few years as more houses are built around the town, which is at Junction 20 of the M1 motorway. The plan for the new housing – which will go east of the highway – was initially approved by elected officials in July 2020.
This week, after negotiations with developers, a ‘Section 106 agreement’ was finalized, setting out the amount of cash the companies behind the new development will pay for facilities for area residents. , such as recreation, health care and education. Under recently established planning agreements, Harborough District is currently required to build 10,512 new homes over the next 16 years.
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Harborough District Council Leader Phil King said there would be community benefits for current residents of Lutterworth, including jobs, more affordable homes and other infrastructure. He said: “This development will provide a much-needed investment boost to the local economy, with employment and training opportunities during construction.
“As well as providing large open spaces, it will also provide homes for the benefit of many local families and, with 40% of homes affordable, will help those struggling to afford their own home, a place to live.”
The council said the scheme would also ensure the protection of the Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) known as Misterton Marshes, the River Swift and its tributaries and Thornborough Spinney, as well as mature trees and hedgerows of the region.
Coun King added: “It will create thousands of new jobs locally so more people can work closer to where they live, reducing the impact of their travels on the environment and climate. It will also provide a site which could be used to accommodate a new leisure center for Lutterworth if the existing sports center reaches capacity.
The scheme will provide:
- A community park, playgrounds, home gardens, woods, trees and hedges and new ecological habitats
- Land for a potential new leisure center in the future
- Walking and cycling trails – connecting to Lutterworth town center
- 57 acres of retail and commercial space – creating up to 2,500 jobs
- Two new primary schools and a special education unit
- Improvements to main roads and junctions to increase capacity, a new M1 bridge and a new secondary road
- A community center – with the potential for shops, restaurants, cafes, community hall and other local facilities
- About 1,260 of the new homes are expected to be built by 2031 and the rest after 2031
A new secondary road, also being created as part of the scheme, is expected to ‘significantly reduce the amount of traffic flowing through Lutterworth town centre’, the council said.