Cycle hub proposed for 287-home development in Central Milton Keynes

Pedal power is to support a new 27-storey high development proposed for the heart of the city centre,

Wednesday, 3rd March 2021, 4:07 pm
Updated Thursday, 4th March 2021, 11:06 am

Developers are seeking planning permission to turn Saxon Court, currently being used a the city's mass vaccination centre, into an "iconic" new place for people to live, shop and meet.

But the £190 million plan will not come with its own dedicated parking spaces.

This week mixed-use developers First Base and investors, Patron Capital outlined their plans to include a cycle hub as they gear up for a second round of consultation.

Artists' impression of the new Saxon Court development

They say the the bike hub will cater for everyone from BMXers to seasoned cyclists as well as everyone in between.

The former council building will include this cycle themed centre, housing a café, bicycle workshop, bar and exhibition space. It is based largely on a concept made popular by Look Mum,No Hands, a similar venture in London.

The space would be "perfect" for cycle enthusiasts, as well as a great central location, for people to meet friends and sample local artisan produce, say the developers.

"It is hoped that people will use the space as their starting point or as a pit-stop as they explore Milton Keynes via its network of more than 200 miles of redways," said a spokesman.

The new hub would be a Mecca for cyclists

"Saxon Court will also have a provision of e-bikes and e-scooters, opening up cycling and e-travel to a wider audience and adding further weight to First Base’s plans to align with MK’s sustainable living strategy," he said.

The proposals are part of the developers’ plans to integrate into Milton Keynes’ current and future sustainable transport links, while supporting the strategy for 2050 which includes ambitions to be a near carbon zero city, with a focus on emission-free travel.

"The cycle hub will act as the ideal complement to the current plans for the building, designed by world leading architects RSHP, which are set to lead the recovery and future growth of Milton Keynes, creating over 2,000 new jobs and opportunities for local, independent food, drink, leisure and retail businesses," said the spokesman.

John Ritchie, Chair of Team MK Cycling, said: “As one of the UK’s most cycle friendly places a cycle hub is something Central Milton Keynes is definitely missing. The proposed Saxon Court hub would create a much needed facility giving cyclists a practical and social focal point."

.So far, developers have engaged the local community on its initial plans for Saxon Court in phase one

of public consultation, which took place at the end of last year. More than 1,500 residents gave their

feedback with an "overwhelmingly positive response" to the proposals, they say.