Re-development of Northumbria Police HQ site

Re-development of Northumbria Police HQ site
An outline planning application for residential development at Northumbria Police Headquarters site is being submitted by Police and Crime Commissioner for Northumbria and the Chief Constable.
It follows a decision by the former Police Authority to relocate most services from the Ponteland site where the Force has been well supported by the local community.
Maintaining a traditional headquarters site was not considered the best way to deliver operational benefits nor did it fit with the police objective to deliver its services in neighbourhoods.
Most of the services have now been relocated.
Police & Crime Commissioner Vera Baird said: “The Chief Constable and I are very committed to maintaining the number of police officers and staff working in our neighbourhoods and we need to reorganise to prioritise that.”
The Chief Constable Sue Sim added: “Neighbourhood policing remains our cornerstone in delivering our service and I will continue to protect, as far as possible, officers and staff who are visible and work in our communities.
“The Force has an excellent record in reducing crime and disorder and keeping our communities safe and I want those high standards to continue.”
As well as contributing towards the need for new houses in Northumberland, the application will also retain the Police Northern Communications Centre and Command Suite on the site.
The proposal will avoid using “Greenfield” land and the site’s redevelopment will reduce the pressure to release other undeveloped land in Ponteland.
Providing a mixture of housing and police related uses has been considered by the Local Planning Authority for the site in the recent past and found to be acceptable.
The current proposal significantly reduces the amount of police accommodation, which the Council previously found suitable.
If the outline application is approved, a reserved matters application will be required before any work begins to agree the specific layout and the design of individual buildings.
The Masterplan illustration shows how the development could look with the proposed access via the existing Police Headquarters access off North Road.
It is centred around maintaining the listed buildings on the site and ensures that both the characteristics of the site and Ponteland village have been considered.
The planning application is supported by an Ecological Survey, Transport Assessment, Archaeological Appraisal and Design & Access Statement.
The development will include a mixture of 3, 4 and 5 bed, semi-detached and detached homes, constructed from traditional materials. The layout will respect the existing topography of the site and retain existing trees and hedgerows along the site’s boundaries. 
Have your say....
A public roadshow is taking place on Tuesday, 18 February, 2014, in Merton Hall, Merton Road, Ponteland, from 2pm until 8pm.
Members of the Project Team will be available to discuss the proposals and answer any questions.
Any member of the public interested in the development can also offer their comments before the planning application is submitted.
You can submit your comments in writing to:
Police and Crime Commissioner for Northumbria
2nd Floor, Victory House
Balliol Business Park
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE12 8EW
Comments should be sent by 26 February, 2014.
Following public consultation the proposals will be finalised and an application submitted to Northumberland County Council. This will be formally publicised in the local press by the Council and by letter to immediately adjoining neighbours.