Among the welcome statements are:
Para. 1.18 This SPD also supports the delivery of sustainable development, by improving the attractiveness of the borough for residents, workers, businesses and visitors, helping to create stronger community cohesion and supporting sustainable patterns of development as well as the use of sustainable design solutions and technologies.
Para. 1.10 The council is also very concerned about build quality, which has become a significant issue in relation to some new development in the borough. Therefore, the council considers that it is vital that new development is well-built and the council will take whatever measures it can to ensure rigorous enforcement of building regulations.
Para. 2.15 [Orientation of buildings] is also a particularly significant issue in relation to sustainability. For example, paying proper regard to orientation creates opportunities to maximise passive solar gain and facilitate the use of certain renewable energy technologies such as solar panels.
Para. 2.23 It is necessary to identify and consider the implications related to unneighbourly land uses and/or sources of pollution.
Para 4.9 (part) …Given the importance of securing sustainable modes of transport, including walking and cycling, these should be given at least the same level of consideration as vehicular routes when considering how to incorporate routes and connections.
Unfortunately the subsequent paragraphs 4.17-4.20, describing design principles for main streets carrying throughgoing traffic, don’t specify that there should be dedicated lanes for high volumes of high-speed “commuter” cycle traffic, but paragraph 5.7 partly redresses this, recognising that cyclists and pedestrians need to be separated “wherever possible”.
Para.s 6.38 to 6.40 on the benefit of urban trees include “…the site planning process should protect good quality existing trees wherever possible and ensure that opportunities are taken for new tree planting, especially in prominent positions. If any trees need to be removed then replacement planting will be necessary.”
Para.s 8.46 to 8.56 describe energy- and water-harvesting housing: passive solar, solar PV, rainwater diversion and green roofs. “…the council is very keen to support more ambitious approaches…” to design for sustainability (para. 8.46).
Para. 9.2 Materials are also very important from a sustainability perspective. The materials chosen need to have regard to their sustainability credentials. It is necessary to consider issues such as the processes involved in the production of man-made materials, and the sustainability credentials of naturally sourced
materials in terms of their location of origin, transportation and durability.
Para. 8.86 has principles for new build or conversion of existing buildings into Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs), including the need for soundproofing. Having HMOs included in the document is important recognition that a room in a HMO is the only home that many ordinary people can afford, and that these people also deserve to live in well-planned homes.
Section 10 on gardens and amenity space has rules about garden areas and shading, but no discussion of the use of these spaces for growing food.
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