The prospect of a major development in Oxfordshire including 3,000 new homes looks set to take a step nearer reality this week.

Oxford City Council’s cabinet is likely to agree to go in search of a development partner and consultants for the scheme on land south of Grenoble Road at its meeting on Wednesday, October 13.

The proposed development – known as South Oxfordshire Science Village (SOSV) – will also feature an extension to The Oxford Science Park, new schools, open spaces, community facilities and shops, as well as travel improvements which could include a new park and ride and the reopening of the Cowley branch line at the science park.

The SOSV land is largely within South Oxfordshire District Council’s (SODC) area and was released from the Green Belt to assist meeting Oxford’s unmet housing need. SOSV will also contribute to the regeneration of Blackbird Leys.

The city council will work with its fellow landowners Magdalen College and Thames Water to put a development agreement in place and begin procurement of a master developer. A planning application could be submitted in 2023.

Cllr Alex Hollingsworth, cabinet member for planning and housing delivery, said: “It’s been a longstanding ambition of the city council to develop our land at Grenoble Road, to provide some of the homes needed to meet demand for affordable housing in Oxford.

“The allocation of the land in the South Oxfordshire Local Plan and the council’s partnership with Magdalen College and Thames Water – the other landowners in the area – allows that ambition to be realised.

“The allocation of this site for just under 3,000 homes includes a requirement that half will be affordable tenures – including council homes, sub-market, affordable rent and shared ownership homes.

“There’s a lot to do before a planning application is submitted and we’ll be working hard with Thames Water and Magdalen College to put a development agreement in place and bring in a partner to help share the risks of the scheme, and get the building of these new homes under way.”

“We’re already working closely with our friends at South Oxfordshire District Council, who are the planning authority, and look forward to realising a shared vision with them for this important new development on the edge of Oxford.”

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