Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Brits Redeveloping Brownfield into 'Sustainable Town'

Thanks to Mike Papageorge at AlternativeSource for passing along this piece of very cool news -- the Brits are building an entire sustainable town on "the disused Oakington Barracks in Cambridgeshire":
England is to get its first 'sustainable' new town with all 10,000 homes meeting the Government's eco-standards and using micro-renewable energy....

The purchase of the 288 hectare site is set to unlock the development of the proposed new town of Northstowe, creating up to 10,000 new homes.

Northstowe, which is five miles from the centre of Cambridge, will contribute to the region's growth agenda and ease pressure on the Cambridge housing market that currently suffers from a shortage of new and affordable homes.

But what makes Northstowe so different is the Government's desire to set the 'sustainability' standard through this development.

ODPM Minister for Communities and Local Government David Miliband said: "More sustainable housing has a vital role to play in tackling climate change which is why we have increased energy efficiency standards for new buildings by 40% since 2002, setting further stretching standards through our Code for Sustainable Homes, and reviewing the sustainability of our existing stock."

Margaret Ford, Chairman of English Partnerships said: "This is another significant example of government agencies working together to bring forward surplus land effectively and for the benefit of local communities.

"The land at Oakington will make a significant contribution to Northstowe where a new and sustainable community offering homes, amenities, jobs and open space is planned in an area of housing need."

Defence Estates Chief Executive, Vice Admiral Peter Dunt, said: "Government is committed to using more brownfield land to create sustainable communities with affordable housing.

"The sale of Oakington is yet another example of the strong working relationship between two government agencies in devising strategies to make best use of surplus public sector land."

The OPDM has also released "new measures aimed at building on existing work by ODPM to tackle climate change and promote sustainable development..." The British government certainly has its failings, but they're doing a stellar job of making sustainable development a national priority.

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