Peobody and Oxford City Council will create a new identifiable District Centre to meet the current and future needs of the Blackbird Leys community. The centre will have a new inclusive and multifunctional community centre, better accessible public space, new shops and new affordable homes.
The regeneration is to tackle key issues such as health, education and employment inequalities and support wider community inclusion. The work has been carried out to date in collaboration with local community groups and associations and everyone in the Leys community.
Why do we need this?
The existing shopping and community centre buildings are nearing the end of their design life and will need to be replaced. We have an opportunity to design for the future and by creating high quality new and better community facilities bringing a range of benefits to the Leys and at the same time providing much needed new affordable housing.
What will the new facilities offer?
The Community Centre
The new Community Centre will be the focus for the development. It will be more accessible, more inclusive, more active and better designed. The planning application for the community centre is in outline only, confirming a minimum of 1,200sqm for the new centre. This means that Oxford City Council will engage with the community to develop a new design and brief for the community centre, which will be more usable, more adaptable and more energy efficient to support a wider range of users for the community going forward.
No decisions have yet been made on how the new centre will be managed and this will be developed in consultation with the community.
The Public Square
A large community green space is formed in front of the new community centre, where the roundabout has been replaced with a tree-lined area. 138 new trees are to be planted within the District Centre as part of the proposals. The new square will be at the heart of the community in the District Centre, with the new shops, community centre and separate church development creating a community hub.
The New Shops
New shops will replace the existing top shops, and these will face the public square. There will be enough space for all current retailers who wish to return, and we will be working with individual retailers over the next few years. The new shops will have better services and be more energy efficient.
There will be 210 new apartments at the District Centre, of which 100% are affordable. 18% will be for shared ownership and 82% for rent. You can find out more information about shared ownership here.
5% of the rented homes will be wheelchair accessible and these will each have a designated accessible parking space. 92% of apartments have windows with views out in at least two directions. All homes have areas to work, and access to private outdoor space (either a garden or a balcony).
Knights Road will be 100% affordable, with all 84 homes for shared ownership, offering increased opportunities for young people to stay local to get on the housing ladder. There will be a mix of home sizes to meet local demand; 8 of which will be 3 bedroom and 68 will be 2 bedroom.