NW Bicester (Posted 16.07.14)

From apples to carrots – street names picked for UK’s first eco town.

Eight street names have been carefully chosen following a unique competition to name the streets of the 'Exemplar', the first phase of homes at North West Bicester in Oxfordshire - the UK’s first eco town.

Over 900 people entered the competition to have their names chosen after the theme ‘fruit, vegetables and herbs’ was selected by local stakeholders.

Charlotte Avenue and Bramley Avenue have made the cut for the first stage of the development, along with Portobello Close, Pippin Close, Tayberry Close, Morello Close, Chantenay Close and Orchard Walk.

The theme complements other communities in Bicester such as Bure Park, which has streets named after plants, and Langford which has streets named after birds.

Lead developer A2Dominion and Cherwell District Council created the competition as part of A2Dominion’s community engagement approach to involve the existing Bicester community in the development.

Louise Caves, strategic partnership manager at A2Dominion, said: “We had so many great entries and it was a tough choice trying to pick from them all. We are delighted with the chosen names which reflect the ethos of NW Bicester and have now all been verified with Royal Mail for their post code allocation.

“Part of our ambition for NW Bicester is to give residents the opportunity to grow and share their own food using the community allotments and make the best use of the communal herb boxes. The street which overlooks the community orchard will be aptly named Orchard Walk.

“As well as allotments and herb boxes, each new resident will have a fruit tree planted in their garden, so the new street names really will reflect the character of the development. We really valued the involvement of the community as we want to give local people the opportunity to be a part of this unique development. Thank you to everyone who helped us to name the streets on the first phase.”

The 'Exemplar' phase will consist of 393 highly energy efficient true zero carbon homes for existing and new residents of Bicester.

With construction on the first of four phases underway, the 'Exemplar' design fosters a community that is vibrant, resilient and sustainable.

Streets will incorporate communal barbecue areas, seating and features to encourage children to play in the street safely. 40 percent of the development is designated green space.

Homes will all be located within 400m of a bus stop and come with bicycle storage, access to an electric car club and cycle and pedestrian links to Bicester Town Centre with the aim of reducing car usage to 50 percent. Currently 67.5 percent of journeys in Bicester are made by car.

First residents are expected to move into their new homes in summer 2015.