The plans for a new garden village with 2,200 apartments, schools and a science and business park are almost complete.
Salt Cross Garden Village, north of the A40 near Eynsham, is one of the first garden villages to be approved by the Government in 2017.
West Oxfordshire Borough Council said the planning inspector had “approved most of the council’s ambitious plans”.
The agency said the inspector had set out some changes to be consulted in July.
Councilor Carl Rylett, Cabinet Member for Planning and Sustainable Development, said: “I am pleased to say that the Planning Inspector has approved most of the Council’s ambitious plans, including breakthrough targets for biodiversity and affordable housing.”
But he said he was “very disappointed” that the requirement for the new homes to be built to net-zero carbon standards had not been approved by the inspector.
He said: “We are very disappointed that the inspector did not approve the net zero carbon home approach we proposed. However, the Council is absolutely committed to doing everything in its power to address the climate change emergency and we will consider what other options we have to minimize the ongoing climate impact.”
The 215 hectare (531 acres) property is owned by separate landowners.
The Area Action Plan sets the framework for how the Salt Cross Garden Village should be developed through extensive consultation with local communities.
The plan includes:
A requirement to achieve a net biodiversity gain of 25% compared to a national standard of at least 10%
A mix of new homes with build-your-own opportunities and 50% affordable housing, including a mix of rented and affordable homeownership options
A new 40 hectare science and technology park adjacent to a Park and Ride in Oxford
Around 50 percent (including private gardens and green roofs) of the area will form a barrier-free and high-quality green infrastructure network
A comprehensive green infrastructure network for walking and cycling to reduce car dependency
A plan to ensure local people can benefit from training and local employment opportunities
The Council presented the Salt Cross AAP in February 2021, with the Planning Inspector holding public hearings.
The inspector has now confirmed that the plan is nearing completion, subject to amendments, which are set out in a letter which the council will now consider.
Opinions on the proposed changes are being sought through a wide public consultation, the timing of which will be confirmed as soon as possible but is expected to take place for a period of six weeks from July 2022.
More information about the Garden Village can be found at https://www.westoxon.gov.uk/planning-and-building/planning-policy/salt-cross-garden-village/