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The University of Cambridge has awarded contracts to two residential developers, Countryside and Hill, to build the market housing on the North West Cambridge Development. The combined investment will see the housebuilders delivering 400 homes in the first phase of the development.

Deal signed with Cambridge University  for the North West Cambridge development

Brian Nearney, Commercial Director of the North West Cambridge Development said: “Our partnerships with Countryside and Hill mark another major chapter in development. Both developers have demonstrated to the University that they will create new homes that will meet our objectives of sustainable living and exemplar design. We look forward to working with them in delivering this new quarter of the City.”

All 400 market homes as well as the 700 University key worker homes that are part of the first phase of the development will be designed to high levels of sustainability meeting the Code for Sustainable Homes Level 5. They will be integrated into the Sustainable Urban Drainage System including the UK’s largest non‐potable water recycling system, as well as the district heating network, and make extensive use of photovoltaics.

Countryside, working with Proctor and Matthews Architects, and Hill working with Pollard Thomas Edwards and Alison Brooks Architects, will deliver a mix of housing types, including apartments, terraces, semi-detached and detached houses for the scheme.

Graham Cherry, Chief Executive of Countryside’s New Homes & Communities division said: “We are delighted to have been selected by the University of Cambridge to help create a dynamic new district that will form the next chapter in the evolution of Cambridge. Working with Proctor and Matthews we will use our design and place making skills to create a quarter that will set new standards for 21st century living.”

Bidwells has been working with the University as development advisors to the North West Cambridge Development.

Brian Buckingham, Partner of Bidwells said: “It is exciting to have worked with the University to secure two strong local developers from the competition to deliver the market housing – they will set the benchmark for the quality of homes for the later phases of the scheme and underpin the ambitions of the University to create a long‐lasting place.”

The market housing for the North West Cambridge Development will be available from Spring 2016 and the designs will be subject to reserved matters applications to the local authorities in 2015.

Some description




The North West Cambridge Development is the largest single capital project that the University of Cambridge has undertaken in its 800‐year history. Outline planning permission was granted in February 2013 for the scheme, subject to approval of site‐wide legal conditions and Reserved Matters Applications, on the 150‐ hectare site of University farmland situated in between Huntingdon Road, Madingley Road and the M11. The masterplan includes 3,000 homes (50% ‘key worker’ housing, available for qualifying University and Colleges employees), 2,000 post‐graduate student spaces, 100,000 sqm of research space, a local centre and community facilities including a primary school, nursery, doctors’ surgery, supermarket and retail units, as well as all of the site‐infrastructure and landscaping for the scheme. The development has been designed as an extension to the city, with an urban rather than suburban grain and will be of the highest design quality as well as being an exemplar of sustainable living. www.nwcambridge.co.uk

Project team

Client: University of Cambridge

Project: North West Cambridge Development

Residential Homes Developers: Countryside and Hill

Development advisors: Bidwells

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