The work will facilitate the construction of the relocated Bishop’s Stortford High School to the Whittington Way site
Leading developer Countryside has commenced infrastructure works on its significant new development in Bishop’s Stortford, known as St James’ Park.
A key milestone in the site’s development, these initial infrastructure works are being carried out to facilitate the building of the relocated Bishop’s Stortford High School by creating a new access and haul road off St James Way for the school’s contractors. Construction of the school is planned to start in late September 2020.
Crucial to the success of the school’s timely relocation, Countryside in partnership with Hertfordshire County Council has brought forward these works, demonstrating their commitment to the local area’s educational facilities. The new secondary school will comprise a 10,017 sq m (107,639 sq ft) school building, sports hall, floodlit multi-use games area and parking. Infrastructure works to the northern end of the site will follow on to provide an access road off Whittington Way for works traffic, ahead of the construction of the first phase of new homes due to start in the autumn.
Once complete, St James’ Park will ultimately be a mixed-use development spread over four hectares, delivering 750 new homes, a care home, employment space, a primary and secondary school, and a local centre with shopping facilities.
Named after the oldest building in the parish, Grade I listed local landmark St James’ Church, St James’ Park will comprise a series of distinct character areas linked by a network of pedestrian footpaths and cycleways and extensive green open space, complete with attractive landscaping and equipped play areas.
Underpinning this sustainable new community, the schools will sit together at the heart of the development, surrounded by extensive playing fields and green space. The primary school will have capacity for up to three forms of entry and have Early Years facilities; the secondary school will take up to eight forms of entry.
Outline planning permission for the St James’ Park masterplan, and detailed permission for Phase 1 of the development, was granted in December 2019. Phase 1 will include the first 142 houses to be built, an impressive 40% of which will be affordable (available through either affordable rent or Shared Ownership).
Martin Leach, Managing Director Strategic Land, Countryside said:
“We’re pleased to have commenced the vital infrastructure works at St James’ Park. The vision for the development is centred around creating a sustainable and thriving new district for Bishop’s Stortford. As a developer, Countryside is committed to creating sustainable new communities by delivering valuable infrastructure in the early stages of development. By prioritising the relocation of Bishop’s Stortford High School, we are ensuring St James’ Park is fully integrated with the existing community and supports local community living from day one.”