The Masterplanning Process

What is a Masterplan?

A Masterplan is a strategic, long-term planning document which sets a vision for the future development of a site with an accompanying set of framework plans which establishes how site-specific matters such as its layout and landscaping may be realised. It also includes an implementation strategy to ensure that the proposed infrastructure is delivered in a structured manner.

The delivery of a mixed-use development on the ‘Land to the west of Mildenhall’ site involves an extensive process that ranges from its allocation within the adopted Local Plan to the eventual grant of planning permission. The flow chart, below, is designed to help you understand this process.

Step 1

Site Allocation

West Suffolk Council (WSC) is required to identify and allocate sufficient land to meet demand for wide range of uses, including housing. Accordingly, they invited landowners to suggest land parcels that could meet this demand – Suffolk County Council put forward this site.

Various sources were used by WSC to assess its development potential, including evidence base studies and dialogue with infrastructure providers. WSC concluded that it was suitable for mixed-use development, and it was therefore allocated within the SALP.

Step 2

Masterplan Preparation

From its allocation within the adopted Local Plan the project team undertook a further analysis of the site and surrounding area. This informed the production of a evidence base which was subject to a public consultation in January-February 2021.

A range of evidence and options was gathered in light of this feedback. A draft Masterplan is now subject to this public consultation event. This will inform any final revisions. Once finalised, it will be submitted to WSC for adoption as a material planning consideration.

Step 3

Planning Application Submission

With the Masterplan adopted, a suite of architectural drawings and technical reports will be prepared by the project team. This will support the submission of planning applications to WSC for approval of the mixed-use development.

It should be stressed that any planning application submitted on the site will need to demonstrate its compliance with the high-level principles established within the adopted Masterplan.

Step 4

Delivery of Development

With each planning permission obtained, there will be further details that will need to be submitted and approved by WSC. This process is called ‘discharge of conditions’. Alongside this, a number of financial contributions will need to be paid towards additional infrastructure provision.

Once the applicable matters have been satisfied, construction works will be able to commence on site. This will be structured into four key phases.

How your feedback can help

A Masterplan has been developed for this site in line with the requirements of Policy DM3 (Masterplans) of the Joint Development Management Plan. Any future planning application submitted on the site will be expected to comply with the high-level principles established within the Masterplan.

Whilst we would welcome feedback on all aspects in relation to the proposed Masterplan, the table below has been prepared to outline the type of feedback that can assist its evolution as well as those planning matters which the document cannot address.

Feedback that can influence
the final Masterplan
  • The overall vision and objectives for the site
  • The opportunities and technical constraints that the proposal presents
  • The design principles proposed, such as storey heights and overall densities
  • The various framework plans (site-specific strategies), such its layout and landscaping
Feedback that cannot influence
the final Masterplan
  • The principle of mixed-use development on the site
  • The overall quantum of development proposed, such as the number of dwellings
  • The precise layout of the proposed land uses or the exact housing mix
  • Addressing existing infrastructure issues