I never know whether it’s just me that’s interested in these things or other house-builders, too! I’ve been finding out about housing density, which technically speaking we could just leave to the planners to worry about.
That said, quite often self-builders in towns and cities buy houses with an eye on the garden. Is there a plot there? Could it get the go-ahead? I’m someone who actually doesn’t like this approach – in the same way that paving over front gardens to turn them into car ports brings me out in a cold sweat! – but I’m a realist and I understand this is one way to increase housing density. Why might we want to do this anyway, you might ask?
In my latest podcast interview I chat to retired architect and planner, Graham Towers. Over the years he’s been involved in high density housing design as well as regeneration projects in central London. He presents a compelling case why if we’re serious about tackling climate change, higher density housing makes a lot more sense. That doesn’t mean it has to be extreme, just to a level where heading out on foot becomes the easiest way to get about. The energy and financial savings quickly stack up, too, and public transport becomes more efficient. I even wondered whether our future cities could be car-free but apparently there’s a city in Germany that’s already done this.
In my chat with Graham we look back at some of the UK’s history to see how housing has developed through the years. We also hear about some of the successes and some of the developments that should never have gone ahead!