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The Outer M25

I suppose one should be grateful for the candour of the National Infrastructure Commission when it admitted the purpose of its proposed Oxford-Cambridge Expressway is to facilitate car-dependent urban sprawl. In its proposal for the gherkin-shaped sprawl corridor last November, it said decisions on ...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 21 May 2018

A Matter Of Principle

About a hundred years overdue, we could finally be seeing a serious national debate over whether garden cities are a good thing. This is an issue the planning profession has treated with kid gloves ever since its inception, thanks to the role garden city enthusiasts played in its foundation and the ...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 05 May 2018

Election Fever

You may not have noticed it, but this is local election time in large parts of England. Election fever, however, has been hard to spot. I visited my own local authority website a couple of days ago to find out who the candidates are in my ward. The council had not even bothered to upload them. It to...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 01 May 2018

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Transit-oriented-development urged

Added on 20 September 2016

A paper from the Campaign to Protect Rural England has urged adoption of transit-oriented-development to create more homes and vibrant communities, while reducing pressure for greenfield development.

Making the Link makes a case for TOD in medium to small towns as well as the larger settlements where it has traditionally been used in North America and elsewhere.

"To build the homes we need and make our towns attractive for residents and businesses, housing development and transport must go hand in hand," said the paper‘s author Trinley Walker.

"Good access to public transport should be an important factor when councils make decisions about where to build houses, yet it often gets sidelined. This means that in many towns the potential for regeneration, quality housing and better connected communities is missed."

CPRE says TOD, which it calls public-transport-oriented-development, emphasises density, diversity and design and is consistent with the Smart Growth approach.

But while traditional TOD approaches have emphasised densification of low-density areas in larger towns and cities to produce better balanced and less car-dependent centres, CPRE says the focus should be on hub towns with populations between 10,000 and 30,000.

The paper sets out how councils could identify sites, how such work could be incentivized and recommends tax increment financing as a suitable mechanism.

Making the Link

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