Planning JTP bags for Cambridge build-to-let scheme | News

Architect and developer JTP has secured planning permission for a development of 291 built-to-let apartments and a 202-bedroom apartment hotel on the site of the former National Institute of Agricultural Botany in Cambridge.

The proposals, for Howes Green – on Huntingdon Road, northwest of Cambridge city center – involve the demolition of all structures except the former NIAB head office building on the 2.85ha site.

The structure, designed by PR Morley Horder in the 1920s, is currently being converted to provide 68 new homes under separate proposals. NIAB moved to a new headquarters in Cambridge designed by Paul Evans Architects in 2020.

Earlier this month, members of Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council’s Joint Development Control Committee approved JTP plans for the seven residential blocks and new hotel, which have been developed for Vertex Living.

Chemin Huntingdon 1 ©JTP and Atelier78

JTP partner Emma Armstrong said the proposals were inspired by the form, massing and detailing of the existing NIAB building, with brick chosen as the predominant material for the project.

She said Howes Green would be Cambridge’s first ‘large-scale build-to-let community’ and support the council’s net carbon emissions ambitions by promoting active travel, circular economy principles and resilience climatic.

“The program demonstrates a commitment to improving the former NIAB site,” she said. “New homes, landscaped green spaces and valuable new amenities will create a truly walkable neighborhood where residents will have access to their daily necessities right at their doorstep.”

The apartment hotel element of the program includes a “small” microbrewery, while the housing portion includes a management office, community rooms, and designated space for a café or boutique.

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Rozella J. Cook