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Sacred Or Profane

The Internet Sacred Text Archive is an intriguing website which contains, as it says, the text of numerous books about religion, mythology, folklore and the esoteric. In a section headed Utopia, is a book many consider sacred, namely Garden Cities of Tomorrow by Sir Ebenezer Howard. I-apos-ve been a...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 19 April 2018

Garden Communities And Why Communities Are Saying No

This week sees the launch of two important publications on garden communities. Most important, of course, is the Smart Growth UK report on garden communities with the affected communities themselves saying just why they are saying no. No less than 10 of the local opposition campaigns have come toget...

Posted by Jon Reeds on 12 April 2018

Housing Targets And The Death Of Oxfordshire

First of all we heard from the Oxfordshire Growth Board, which includes the six Oxfordshire councils, that 100,000 new homes were needed -apos-to address the county-apos-s severe housing shortage and expected economic growth-apos-. Then we found out that a new Government method of calculating housin...

Posted by Nigel Pearce on 08 April 2018

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PRESS RELEASE Garden Towns and Villages

Added on 04 May 2017

A new report from the Smart Growth UK coalition on the Government&rsquos programme for garden towns and villages has found there is little to distinguish them from traditional greenfield sprawl and they have serious sustainability shortcomings.

The report includes input from some of the community bodies opposing the developments and says the high moral tone of promoters is at odds with the reality of their proposals. Most of the 10 garden towns and 14 garden villages endorsed by the Department for Communities and Local Government are simply existing urban extension proposals rebadged, with added &ldquogreen-wash&rdquo.

The garden towns are mostly agglomerations of existing urban extension plans, often miles apart and having little or no relationship to one another. They are not towns at all, in fact several are simply blobs of urban sprawl outside more than one existing town.

Only three out of 14 garden villages meet DCLG&rsquos stipulation that they should be new settlements. Few of the garden towns or villages make much use of brownfield land and most are predominantly or wholly greenfield. Most would place heavy demands on local infrastructure.

Adherence to the &ldquogarden city&rdquo principle of low-density development means all of them are set to be basically car-dependent. There is virtually no sign of the transit-oriented development that modern sustainable development demands and they would add to local traffic congestion.

Even if all 24 were ever completed, they would make very little contribution to housing shortages and few are located in areas of greatest need. Some include substantial employment space &ndash but this would just increase housing demand in areas where local people are already finding it hard to find homes for their families. Others would create thousands more homes in areas of low-demand and stagnant markets.

They are supposed to enjoy &ldquocommunity support&rdquo but local opposition is growing despite the heavily moralistic tone of their promoters. The report recommends a Smart Growth alternative approach for meeting our housing needs.

Report

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