Thursday, June 22, 2006

A Land Fit for Concrete

A damning indictment of the plan to build 'double' the number of predicted new homes in the South-east in today's Daily Telegraph:

"It's begun, as we knew it would. They've predicted, so now they are going to provide. Government forecasters said five million new households would be formed in England over the next 20 years, 1.5 million of them because of record immigration. And now we are seeing the drip, drip of announcements that will provide those notional households with real homes, the majority of them in the South-East."

Read on:

14 comments:

Cllr David Green said...

Planning policy statement three (PPS3), which deals with planning for housing, gives Councils’ the ability to phase the development of sites to ensure brown-field sites are developed first. Current planning rules enable councils to manage the release of sites.
Developers generally, would prefer to ‘cherry-pick’ green-field sites, which can be easier to develop than brown-field sites, leading to increasing development on the outskirts of towns.
PP3 says If new house building is concentrated in areas of high housing demand on the edges of towns and cities, there is a danger that commuting times will be increased and quality of life will suffer. It is vital that urban sprawl is avoided and, where possible, the new housing is concentrated in existing urban centres offering employment opportunities nearby.
It is important in Thanet to retain the ‘brown-field first’ system and this is a key test of whether we are serious about the environment or just paying lip service.
However locally, there are some consequences to this approach. It obviously will require greater densities in our existing towns. Ideally this should be carefully planned to avoid piecemeal development. An important test is over the Westwood development and whether we should insist on phasing release of the land to ensure that development of brown-field sites elsewhere continues.
Another issue at Westwood concerns the balance between funding for low cost home ownership competing for funding for social rented housing. Thanet’s 4000 council waiting list require housing to rent, whereas developers generally prefer low cost home ownership as their contribution to “social housing”
Another issue to consider concerns the effect of properties left empty by absent landlords. Should we be doing more through compulsory purchase to release these resources?

Anonymous said...

Although the evidence is a bit flimsy as yet,it appears that some of our migrants work in the u.k and then drive back to their home countries and give most of their earnings to family left behind to look after their houses and land.
If it can be proved that these people own homes abroad,they should not be offered council properties as seems to be happening at the moment.

J.G.Burns

Nethercourt said...

I wonder how desperate developers will have to be before any of them will take on the really 'brown' sites.... like the old gasworks....

Anonymous said...

Please can anyone help rather than put a senior to the test, or are these questions for Sandy?

Has anyone checked the number of planning applications (going back since the inception of the U.K. Planning site) for the proposed numbers of new homes built and to be built, also the numbers of properties converted from commercial to residential use and the numbers of large properties converted into flats? Further do they know the total number of residents that these properties could house?

Also do they know the number being built and paid and converted for by London Boroughs and housing associations?

One wonders if the residents of Nash Lane and Star Lane realise that outline planning approval has been granted for the Rose Poultry Farm/Silent Gliss site? admittedly this is a brown field site but this will be a further deterioration of the quality of life for these existing residents in this area. Outline approval has been granted for houses and flats to be built adding to the proposed Westwood Housing Estate. This development consists of: 7 x 2 bed terrace units + 6 x 3 bed terrace units + 5 x 3 bed terrace units + 33 x 2 bed appartments + 3 x 1 bed appartments + 57 car parking spaces.

Questions:
In their opposition to the new Westwood Housing Estate are the residents of Nash Lane and Star Lane aware of the above developnment?
Are they aware that the entrance/exit to this development will also be in Nash Land/Star Lane?
Will the new school proposed for the Westwood Housing Estate be of sufficient size to cope with the addition of the extra pupils from this developement?
Are KCC & TDC requesting a fee from the developers of the Rose Farm/Silent Gliss development of X number of pounds to go towards the expansion of the new school on the Westwood Housing Estate?
Will the secondary schools be able to cope with the additional pupils? Don't forget that Kent Education say that the school rolls are falling.
Will the existing roads be able to cope with the additional cars before the Westwood Housing Estate is built or will the roads be put in place before all developements in this area?

From the Cynical Snob

Anonymous said...

I think you might find that the old gass works site is being cleaned up in preparation for development.

Anonymous said...

Can anyone let us know how the outline planning application for houses to be built on the land round Salmstone Grange is proceeding? also the Eco Friendly site in Nash Road?

Anonymous said...

Will the development round Salmstone Grange also include the allotments?

Anonymous said...

Never mind Thanet will still be a tip even though the Council will receive all this extra revenue.
Still at least we will be able to house plenty of foreign nationals all claiming rent and property tax rebates and all the other benefits that others can't think about or get.

Anonymous said...

I read recently in one of the free papers that the people behind the housing development at Westwood are also the owners of Westwood Cross Shopping centre. Anyone else remeber this?

Anonymous said...

Ah yes. Chelvertons.

Dave Chamberlain said...

Recently attended the Grand Designs Live at Excel exhibition. There was also an interesting article in the Sunday Times supplement a few weekends a go by Kevin McCloud who stated we are still using building techniques devised by the Assyrians and last refined by the Romans. We dig mud from the ground, bake it into slabs, glue the slabs together with more mud, add more mud and goo to the out and insides to smooth it off and stick a hole in the roof to let heat and smoke out. He goes on to add you would not buy a well engineered car which had been built in a field so why likewise a house? In Finland half the population live in a house which was built in a factory, in the UK last year of the 160,000 new homes built only 1% were factory built.
Have a look at my new blog. Further links will be added as there are some interesting development solutions out there. Sorry Dr. Moore, it seems like a plug. Thanks! http://uklandsolutions.blogspot.com

Dave Chamberlain said...

The ecological carbon zero units for planning application in Nash Road sound like senior's homes. Mention of 22 ecological sheltered units plus warden accomodation.
The site plan obviously gives away the old railway line that ran here, long and narrow is the best description! Whilst I am dissapointed the site appears to be another seniors housing development (please tell me if I'm wrong, that is the impression) and the fact the people it's angled at, if that is the case, probably produce a lot less carbon emissions anyway it's good to see someone taking a chance with a radical design. I note the website http://www.ecological-construction.com/intro.htm appears on the 3D visuals and some of their work in Thanet is on show there.

Anonymous said...

Cllr Green, a question. I see building of homes all over infill areas in Thanet at the moment as a response to high local property prices. How many housing units have received planning consent in the past few years and what is the total of extra housing already being built in Thanet? Surely our Council knows/ Could we have some real facts here?

Cllr David Green said...

I've emailed a reply to Dr Moores and asked him to publish it.
Its also on my web site eastclifframsgate.blogspot.com