"We want to see attractive and excellent homes that will appeal to all as much for their utility, location and setting as for their green credentials. Providing homes of choice in eco-towns will be crucial to raising aspirations for the planning of all new development."
The Eco-towns Housing Worksheet "Creating low carbon homes for people in eco-towns" highlights that a holistic approach is essential so that people will chose to live in an eco-town because of all the benefits on offer, from access to infrastructure planning, and from equity to land values, and not just for the eco-features.
Former Chief Executive of the National Housing and Town Planning Council and lead author of the Housing Worksheet, Kelvin MacDonald, said: "With the threats inherent in climate change being brought into even sharper focus in the run up to the Copenhagen Conference, it is more important than ever to show how planning and housing development can play their role in making the UK a low carbon country. This demands a fundamental re-think of the ways we plan for communities – not simply by adding eco-bling onto individual houses. This worksheet is designed to provide relevant – but challenging – advice on how to do this."
The aspirational criteria for housing in eco-towns can be summarised as:
* Choice and flexibility: A choice of how to live, a choice of types of housing, and a choice of facilities and services;
* Quality and inspiration: Homes and surroundings that have a quality that pleases residents, and allows them to be proud of where they live and of the fact that it has its own unique identity;
* Affordability: At least 30% of housing to be affordable, including social rented and intermediate housing;
* Safety, security, and a sense of community: A feeling of belonging for local people, opportunities to join in community activities if they want to, opportunities to take responsibility if wanted, and feeling and being safe both at home and outdoors;
* Healthy living: Housing that helps to deliver good health in the community, including through air and noise quality, allotments, and recreation space;
* Having a stake – and a say – in the future: Full information about, and the opportunity to be involved in, decisions about the future including community-based assets;
* Addressing climate change: Housing that minimises the development impact on the environment and which contributes to achieving the goal of a zero carbon community.
Have your say on this story using the comment section below