Wycombe District Council's investment in a new link road through the former Compair site has created a new mixed-use area of the town, attracting investment of £80m, creating new homes and new jobs.
The 'Hughenden Quarter' forms a large corridor of land running between High Wycombe town centre and Hughenden Park, within which lie the former industrial sites of Compair and De La Rue. The availability of these two sites in 2008 provided an opportunity to restructure this part of the town, by comprehensive redevelopment. Ten years later, the final phases of the Hughenden Quarter are taking shape.
An initial component of the vision for the 'Hughenden Quarter' as a new Continuing Care Retirement Community and Student Village was the construction of a £2.3m new 'link road' running north-south through the former Compair site. This provided frontage for the development plots and has an additional benefit to the area of easing congestion at the southern end of Hughenden Road.
The link road park development comprises a two-way single carriageway road and new signalised junction on Hughenden Avenue, together with:
- Structural landscaping, including opening up the Hughenden Stream to be seen and enjoyed
- New planting of native species to enhance and introduce wildlife areas
- New safe and pleasant footways and cycleways alongside the link road and stream
The initial redevelopment was by Bucks New University of 200 student residences, who subsequently added another 200 units and have a remaining site with consent for another 200 units.
This was followed by the sale by the Council of serviced land to Extra Care Charitable Trust, an investor / developer / manager of 'independent supported living'. Extra Care Charitable Trust have developed 260 apartments with a large 'community hub' comprising 'village hall', restaurant, shop, workshops, greenhouses, fitness suite and dementia consulting rooms. 40% of the apartments are 'affordable housing'.
A second site at the northern end was sold by the Council to the charity Royal Star Garter, for development as a 70 unit care home. A third site at the southern end was sold to Martons for development as a pub restaurant, fronting the Hughenden Stream.
The Council are awaiting determination on a planning application for the final piece of the jigsaw - the former factory car park ('the Upper Site'). The proposal being 68 apartments for development by a housing association as affordable housing and up to 1500sm (15,000 sq ft) of small workshop units, for small firms.