Today the government launched a new garden towns initiative to create or further develop communities around the UK along garden town principles. One of those towns selected to benefit from the scheme is our county town of Taunton. This will potentially be good news not just for Taunton, but the surrounding area as it potentially creates jobs and promotes the region as a whole.
In some areas of the UK, the project will be all about building brand new towns along garden town ideals. However in Taunton it will be developing a series of garden villages as a ribbon development around the town at Monkton Heathfield, Comeytrowe/Trull and Staplegrove.
The full value of the project is still unclear. Initially it has been awarded £350k to cover planning costs for the project. That however will be a pinprick in the total cost. The real test of the value of this project is how much of the £2.3bn allocated by government for the whole scheme, Taunton can win.
The largest new garden community is Monkton Heathfield where approximately 4,500 new homes are planned together with employment sites, a new excellent school already provided, a district centre, a country park and woodland in the green wedge between Monkton Heathfield and Priorswood.
There is as yet very little detail on what this will mean but we’ll report further on this as more information starts seeping out.
Happy New Year!