Plans approved for 33 storey high tower block of flats as part of new Central Milton Keynes 'gateway' development

The block is part of the £180m redevelopment of Saxon Court, the city's vaccination centre

By Sally Murrer
Monday, 6th December 2021, 11:27 am

Milton Keynes Council has granted planning permission for the £180 million redevelopment of CMK's Saxon Court, which is currently used as the city's mass vaccination centre.

Mixed-use developer First Base and investors Patron Capital will build 288 apartments on the site of the iconic former council building.

There will also be spaces to work and socialise with the equivalent size of 19 tennis courts worth of publicly accessible space, which forms the the gateway to Central Milton Keynes.

An artists' impression from the architects of how the development will look

Of the two blocks proposed, one will be up 33 storeys high and the other three storeys high.

The development will see the retention, refurbishment, and extension of the original Saxon Court building, which will save over 3,750 tonnes of Co2.

The 2.35 acre site, to be known as MK Gateway, will create over 2,000 new jobs, deliver over £300m in social value over the next 20 years, and provide opportunities for independent food, drink, and retail outlets, including workshop space for local SMEs.

MK Gateway will also see the development of two new buildings called The Shed and The Village. The first will be a space for local businesses to make and create, and the Village will incorporate a UK first - 11 vertical gardens, totalling 4,500 square feet, for residents to share and enjoy.

Artists' impression of the new MK Gateway at Saxon Court

The development is set to be the first in Central Milton Keynes to comply with MK Council’s affordable housing policy, with 31% of homes available for a discounted market rent.

MK Gateway will support the council’s aspirations for a greener, healthier Milton Keynes, say the developers.

The green plans include a focus on sustainable mobility, which will see the integration of all-electric energy solutions within the development, infrastructure to support electric bikes and charging points for electric vehicles and, as the site links directly onto the Redways, a dedicated independent Cycle Hub will be created.

First Base and Patron Capital acquired Saxon Court in October 2020 and have developed the plans following comprehensive consultation with local residents, businesses, community representatives and stakeholders. Over 6,000 responses were received over the consultation process.

The scheme will bring many benefits, say the developers

Steve Eccles, Project Director at First Base said: “We are delighted to have received support from the council for our innovative and sustainable mixed-use development in central Milton Keynes. We will now look to continue to engage and work with Milton Keynes Council, local businesses, charities,

and the community to bring our exciting plans to life."

He added: “On behalf of First Base and Patron Capital, I would like to say a huge thank you to Milton Keynes for welcoming us, and our forward-thinking ideas, with open arms and for working with us to create plans that will redefine future living in the city.”