Greenlight for major housing and light industrial development on the Ovaltine site

04th February 2004

Greenlight for major housing and light industrial development on the Ovaltine site

After complex negotiation, work will start on a unique new riverside development in Kings Langley, Hertfordshire in June 2004, following the decision by Three Rivers District Council to grant planning permission.

The biggest development to be undertaken in the District for 3 years it will include 367 homes and some light industrial units. Green space, soft landscaping, a childrens' play area, space to park your bike and underground car parking are among the planning conditions set by the District Council to make Fairview's development of the landmark Ovaltine site in Station Road, Kings Langley the most environmentally-friendly major development in Three Rivers District undertaken.

Thirty percent of the homes, the highest percentage ever in a housing development in Three Rivers, will be affordable "social housing" at rents or prices below full market levels.

The development which of 257 private homes and 110 affordable homes, on the site of a former factory accommodates all the homes without eating into the 64% of the District which is designated Green Belt. A buffer zone alongside the canal will provide undisturbed refuge for wildlife using the river corridor and will be planted with native species. The landscaping of the development will also use native trees and plants.

Financial contributions are being made by Fairview towards the infrastructure of Abbots Langley and Kings Langley. Money will be directed to allow local schools to be expanded to accommodate extra children and for extra bus routes.

Although 1.5 parking spaces have been allocated to each property, because the site is strategically located next to the railway, bus routes, major roads, the canal and the river Gade, it is hoped that residents may opt to walk, cycle or take the bus or train as an alternative to their cars.

The Art Deco façade to the former Ovaltine factory, a well known landmark with its sheafs of corn, will add to the character of the development. While it is not listed, the District Council has requested that Fairview retain it to preserve the history and character of the site.

Peter Brooker, Director of Leisure and Environment at Three Rivers District Council said: "It has taken a lot of complex negotiation to create a plan which has the minimum impact on the environment, creates a sense of community and is a nice place to live. We have paid great attention to access and parking and it is a condition of development that the road network is put in place before building begins. Every detail has been considered. We know that prevailing winds are north easterly so we have asked that the trees and bushes are planted to protect the areas around the recreation areas and children's playgrounds," he continued.

Plans for minimising the impact of the commercial development on the eastern side of the road is also in place. There will be bike parking spaces and shower facilities in the commercial properties to allow employees to cycle to work.