What is proposed?
The proposals would include up to 1000 new homes, 80 percent of which would comprise three and four bedrooms with 30 percent affordable to rent or part-own, to help meet recognised local needs.
Family homes would be concentrated around 11 distinctive character areas on the Northern Gateway East site with new apartments located on the Mill Pond site. Many of the apartments would benefit from attractive views of the Mill Pond and River Darent.
All houses would include private gardens, with some of the larger homes comprising gardens up to 12 metres in length. Communal gardens would be provided for apartments.
New shops, restaurants and community uses
The Mill Pond buildings to the east of the river would include a series of flexible ground floor commercial units for shops, restaurants, offices and leisure uses. A community hall and a café with outdoor seating would also be provided. In total around 3000 sq m of commercial space would be provided which could create between 80 and 150 new jobs.
Attractive public spaces and activity areas
A generous provision of around 41 percent of the Mill Pond site and 20 percent of the Northern Gateway East site would be designated for public spaces and activity areas.
The northern edge of the site would be transformed into an attractive new park. As well as providing a relaxing area for local people, it could also include new playing fields and sports pitches.
A landscaped public space would be provided in front of the Mill Pond buildings to create a pleasant opening out to the waterfront.
Residential areas would be based on the urban village model and split into eleven character areas, each with a village square at its centre.
A number of equipped activity areas which could include children’s playgrounds or sports facilities such as tennis and basketball courts would be provided throughout residential areas.
Improved pedestrian and cycle routes
Safe, attractive footpaths would be provided to ensure that pedestrians have easily access to the River Darent footpath, station and town centre. New routes have been conceived with the future development of the Station District in mind. New leisurely cycle routes would also be provided.
New public transport and vehicular links
A new spine road would run from Mill Pond Road opposite Overy Street and connect at the junction of Temple Hill and Temple Hill Square. Secondary routes would lead off this road to create the new blocks of residential development.
Public transport routes would be fully integrated into the masterplan with the spine road designed to accommodate the Fastrack bus service.