The latest on plans for Rushden Lakes extension

A proposed extension to Rushden Lakes has halved in size.

Tuesday, 2nd July 2019, 4:33 pm
How Rushden Living could look, with Rushden Lakes in the background.

Plans for the Rushden Living scheme, to the west of the popular shopping destination, went on show last year and promised almost 12,000 sq m of shops, restaurants and office space.

Last month those plans were withdrawn and new plans were put in for a similar scheme but on a smaller scale.

Under the new plans there would be a maximum of 5,606 sq m of floorspace - with half taken up by light industrial or general industrial uses.

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A CGI impression of the Rushden Living pedestrianised area.

The new scheme will have fewer car parking spaces, with 212 compared to the previously suggested 752. It will create 154 jobs, down from the 513 proposed in the previous plan.

Drawings show several units and car parking spaces have been replaced with more green space and footpaths and a new wetland area.

It's not yet known who could move into the majority of the 11 new buildings if they are approved although one of the flagship units, unit six, would be taken on by co-operative group Made in Northamptonshire to showcase the county's best produce.

As well as a retail space the L-shaped building will have a cafe and a area for cooking demonstrations and exhibitions.

The new site layout.

A planning statement said: "The building has been designed to provide a rural, barn-like character, while maintaining a contemporary look in keeping with the context of a modern retail development.

"The design of the building will reflect its intended use as a centre for local enterprises and business, complement the other buildings proposed and contribute to the ‘village’ character of the site."

The units will include shops, restaurants, and leisure/physiotherapy space.

There will also be a public square adjacent to the Made in Northamptonshire unit with a pop-up space, pergolas and seating, a central hub and activity areas.

How the Made in Northamptonshire building could look.

The new development would be accessed by the Ditchford Road link road linking Rushden Lakes, which opened in 2017, and Ditchford Road, or through the main Rushden Lakes entrance. The link road was approved last year.

It's not yet known when construction on Rushden Living or the link road could start.

The previous plans for Rushden Living were objected to by a number of surrounding councils, including Kettering Council who said the scheme was contrary to adopted planning policy.

East Northants Council say they hope to make a decision on the new plans within the next three months.

The link road aims to reduce queues at the entrance to Rushden Lakes.