Final phase of Bicester town centre revamp to start in summer

An artist’s impression of the development

An artist’s impression of the development

First published in News by

WORK on Bicester’s new civic building will start this summer to complete the £70m town centre regeneration.

The £6.5m five-storey building will house Cherwell District Council’s Bicester office, a new library, a 53-bedroom Travelodge Hotel, office and retail or restaurant units.

It will be built over Franklin’s Yard car park, which will close.

The Cherwell District Council planning application was approved by its own councillors on Thursday despite objections from residents.

Objectors said the building was too big, its design inappropriate and that it would change Bicester’s skyline.

Nearby Hunt Close residents feared hotel rooms would overlook their homes “invading privacy 24 hours a day”.

Norman Bolster, Cherwell’s lead member for economy and estates, said: “Almost 12 months on from the opening of Pioneer Square, permission has now been granted for the final stage of this town centre regeneration programme with the Bicester Community Building.

“Its approval marks the end of Franklins Yard car park, but the beginning of a brighter and more prosperous future for the town.

“This decision will enable the use of this site to be maximised to its full potential for the benefit of Bicester.

“Not only will this scheme bring jobs, boost the economy and provide essential community facilities, the addition of the hotel and restaurants will continue to rejuvenate the town outside of office hours, bringing greater activity and vitality.”

The development will also include some of the land at the rear of buildings in Sheep Street, which were made available as part of a land swap.

The quarter-of-a-hectare site is currently used for town centre parking, but there will be no parking within the new construction. Vehicles are expected to use the nearby Sainsbury’s car park, off Manorsfield Road.

Cherwell says the building, which will have eco features including solar panels and a combined heat and power provision and cycle parking, should be completed by summer 2015.

The council’s office will be on the ground floor alongside retail/restaurant units, with the new library on the second floor and offices, and Travelodge on the third and fourth floors.

  • PEOPLE got a glimpse of what the UK’s first eco-town might look like yesterday.

A2Dominion Group is staging a public exhibition in Pioneer Square, Bicester, showing off the plans it will submit to Cherwell District Council later this year. The exhibition is also open from 10am till 2pm at Unit 3, Pioneer Square, today.

The North West Bicester development will create about 6,000 homes and 4,500 jobs. It will be the UK’s first zero-carbon town.

The exhibition shows designs for the first application to be submitted, which will be north of Lords Lane, and features 392 acres that will contain about 2,600 houses. The second application, north of Howes Lane, is where 3,500 homes will be built.

They will be submitted to the council in the summer.

  • BICESTER Village outlet shopping centre has been given permission to build two new shops.

The plans for Pingle Drive will create 961sq ft of extra floor space, according to shopping centre owner Value Retail.

The plans were approved by Cherwell district councillors on Thursday.

Michael Gibbard, the council’s lead member for planning, said: “Expanding the current retail opportunities on offer at Bicester Village will generate both economic and social gains, while continuing to enhance a sustainable location.”

It is not yet known who will occupy the stores.

Our top stories:

Oxford pub boss guilty of cocaine plot

Oxford Mail: Oxford Crown Court

7:10am Saturday 29th November 2014

A PUB boss and building company director has been found guilty of conspiring to deal cocaine.

Labour hangs onto a trio of seats in Oxford

Oxford Mail:

7:10am Saturday 29th November 2014

LABOUR has comfortably held three council seats in Oxford by-elections this week.

Paedophile from Banbury jailed after being caught for second time with indecent images of children

Oxford Mail: Oxford Crown Court

7:00am Saturday 29th November 2014

A PAEDOPHILE who downloaded 12,696 indecent images of children, some as young as 18 months, has been jailed.

West Way campaigners disappointed by approval call

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Saturday 29th November 2014

A CAMPAIGN group has been left “disappointed and angry but not surprised” by a report recommending the £100m West Way redevelopment goes ahead.

'Austerity war' killed our brothers, say campaigners

Oxford Mail:

6:30am Saturday 29th November 2014

TWO sisters of men who starved to death after having their benefits slashed united for a desperate plea to find out why their brothers died.

Black Friday: Shopping traffic causing chaos around Bicester as police warn to avoid area

Oxford Mail:

1:59pm Friday 28th November 2014

POLICE have urged people to avoid the Bicester area due to heavy traffic into Bicester Village on Black Friday.

John Campbell desperate to seize second chance with Oxford United

Oxford Mail:

9:10am Friday 28th November 2014

JOHN Campbell expects it will be a struggle to sleep tonight as he deals with excitement levels beyond anything he experienced playing in two Wembley finals.

Grant: City bids for share of £144m cycling money

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Friday 28th November 2014

OXFORD’S share of a newly-announced £114m grant could be spent on a fully connected city cycle network or teaching cycling in schools, campaigners have said.

Drugs conspiracy case jury considers verdict

Oxford Mail: Scales of Justice

8:30am Friday 28th November 2014

The jury in the case of a pub boss and building company director accused of being involved in a drugs conspiracy has retired to consider its verdict.

Queen of crime who ‘thrilled and inspired a generation’

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Friday 28th November 2014

PD James was yesterday hailed by fellow Oxford literary legend Colin Dexter as ‘one of the most stylish and distinguished modern crime writers’.

Update: Driver taken to hospital after two lorries crash on A34

Oxford Mail: A34 traffic alert

7:38am Friday 28th November 2014

TRAFFIC is "very slow" on the A34 after one lane was closed following a crash between two lorries.

Churchill train revamp

Oxford Mail: Archive pic from Winston Churchill (10800337)

8:00am Friday 28th November 2014

Work is almost finished to restore a train carriage that brought Sir Winston Churchill to his final resting place in Oxfordshire.

Man arrested after attack on rail worker on Chiltern Railways train near Banbury

Oxford Mail: British Transport police badge

8:00am Friday 28th November 2014

A train manager was attacked on a train near Banbury.

Jayden hostel set to close

Oxford Mail: Jayden Parkinson

8:00am Friday 28th November 2014

THE hostel where 17-year-old Jayden Parkinson lived before she was murdered is to close, it was announced yesterday.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree