The multi-million pound transformation of the former Tullis Russell paper mill in Glenrothes will lead to the extension of the town’s main park.
A significant area of green space will be created, opening a connection between the new development in the north of the town and the centre.
A new public area between Riverside and Balbirnie Parks and new foot and cycle paths will also be created as part of the rejuvenation of the 130-acre site.
Developers say the move will create a genuine social boost to the town as well as an economic one.
The development, which received outline planning permission last week, will be overseen by a partnership between Advance Construction and transport tycoons Sandy and James Easdale, owners of west of Scotland-based McGill’s buses.
It will include up to 850 homes, 85 of which will be affordable, a care home and retirement village and new commercial, retail and leisure space, built over the next decade.
It is estimated it will deliver a £42.5 million boost for Glenrothes, creating up to 450 jobs and employment for around 300 construction workers.
Colin Lavety, director at planning consultants Barton Willmore, said: “This is a unique opportunity to create something very special in the town and the redevelopment of the former paper mill will open up new links from this exciting mixed-use district to the rest of Glenrothes and the A92.”
Advance Construction managing director Seamus Shields described the granting of outline planning permission as a key milestone in the development process.
“Not only will this provide a genuine social and economic boost to the town but it will stimulate further growth,” he said.
Sandy Easdale said the works would bring lasting benefits to the region, particularly at Cadham junction where traffic will be diverted through the new site and traffic lights introduced at nearby Markinch roundabout.
“We have already had five housebuilders from across the UK expressing serious interest in the site and we expect this number to increase over the next few months.”
SNP councillor John Beare said the development was significant.
“Without doubt the application for housing and business use is the most significant potential development in Glenrothes since the days of the Development Corporation, he said.
“Further detailed applications will need to come forward before any development can commence on site and issues like traffic flows from and to Cadham will be part of that process.”