Bicester Garden Town Masterplan

Bicester Garden Town Masterplan

The Challenge

SYSTRA were appointed as lead consultants by Cherwell District Council to develop a masterplan for Bicester, and assembled a multidisciplinary team to address movement, urban design and appraisal tasks.

The objective of the commission was to deliver a single, comprehensive masterplan framework for Bicester. This comprises two elements that provide an overarching framework for the delivery of Bicester Garden Town. These are:

  • A strategy framework and movement masterplan to stitch the whole of Bicester together, both existing and proposed. This framework articulates how the identity of Bicester as a Garden Town can be delivered and how the component parts interrelate to deliver ‘one place’.
  • Detailed guidance for the revitalisation and improvement of Bicester town centre, founded on a sound commercial basis, which integrates movement and public realm with development to enhance the centre as a place to spend time in.

A considerable body of work and engagement was carried out both at a town- wide scale and also more locally for a number of key housing development areas. Transport strategy work was also carried out and thhis supports an ongoing transport investment programme. There are also a number of other initiatives and strategies which need to be reflected such as Bicester’s role as a Healthy New Town and the SEP.

SYSTRA’s Role

SYSTRA developed a masterplan which included a healthy streets strategy that is underpinned by a town wide speed limit strategy. This followed a review of the current speed limits across the town and their ’fit’ with the desired outcomes for the masterplan. There are proposed changes to speed limits across a significant proportion of the town and these will be delivered incrementally. The changes include 20mph zones for residential streets, within the town centre and on key approaches. The county council are now progressing implementation.

Public and stakeholder engagement has tested this approach and helped identify specific opportunities that articulate how the masterplan could be delivered.

The Masterplan includes a Delivery Plan that identifies short, medium and long term projects. It also highlights deliverability issues including project inter- dependencies, the roles of different organisations and governance.

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