Crab Hill, Oxford
Crab Hill is one of the South-East’s most significant strategic housing projects. Due to its location, scale and the inherent qualities of the site it presents a great opportunity to develop a high quality, sustainable mixed-use development. OPEN led the masterplanning process for Land Improvement Holdings (LIH) which involved the delivery of representations to the emerging Core Strategy and the preparation of a successful Outline Application securing permission for up to 1500 residential units, combined with a primary school, a neighbourhood centre and other supporting mixed uses.
Following the successful site promotion and Outline Application, OPEN were subsequently appointed by the landowners’ new development partner St Modwen to clear conditions and provide masterplanning and design services for the infrastructure works and significant areas of public open space and landscape.
The site is located on the urban edge of Wantage and extends to around 90ha. The site abuts both an AONB and a green wedge identified as important in preventing coalescence; OPEN’s Landscape and Visual Assessment as part of the Environmental Assessment was therefore critical in ensuring a sensitively designed masterplan with embedded mitigation emerged. Meaningful consultation with both the adjacent local community and Vale of the White Horse District Council officers ensured that an acceptable approach to the sensitive edge conditions was agreed, particularly where existing residential properties back onto the site.
OPEN are currently progressing detailed briefs for the new neighbourhood mixed-use centre and associated community facilities.