Council leader not confident over 5,000 home development in Peterborough

Cllr John Holdich
Cllr John Holdich
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The leader of Peterborough City Council has said he is not sure a major development planned for Peterborough will happen, saying developers are in the ‘last chance saloon’ after an agreement was delayed for a third time.

An agreement between the council and developers over the final details of the 5,000 home Great Haddon development to the south of the city was delayed again last week.

Great Haddon plans ENGEMN00120130320125538

Great Haddon plans ENGEMN00120130320125538

The first houses in the development were originally meant to be built in 2011 - but developers and council planners have been unable to agree the £75 million contributions - known as a Section 106 agreement.

A deadline was originally set for September 30 for an agreement to be made. After that deadline passed, a cut off point was set for November 10 - but at council planning meeting last week, another deadline was set for February 28.

Leader of the council, John Holdich said: “They (the developers) are in the last chance saloon. We need the right houses for the right people with the right skills to be coming to the city.

“I am not confident an agreement will be made, but my officers believe they are close. This development is very important for the future of the city. We need the houses.”

He said if an agreement was not finalised by February, it was likely the planning permission for the development would be refused.

However, North West Cambridgeshire MP Shailesh Vara called for council officers to get the deal done as soon as possible. He said: “It simply should not take five months to sort who will pay for what at Great Haddon and this latest extension must be the last.

“The council needs to get this issue sorted as soon as possible and tell its officers to finish the job at hand before the February deadline.”

Cllr Peter Hiller, Cabinet Member for Growth, Planning, Housing and Economic Development said: “All parties are working hard to achieve a common goal here at this major development site for our city. The issues are certainly complex, given the shared responsibilities, but I am personally reassured by our expert planning team we will achieve that goal within the revised timescale allowed.”