In response to the Government’s announcement at the start of 2017 to use garden cities and towns as a way of supporting much-needed housing delivery across 14 key regions in the UK, PBA launched the 'Creating Garden Communities' blog series to review the original principles of the garden city movement and discuss how these need to be updated to be relevant to the challenges of tomorrow.
In the first of these blogs, PBA Partner Tim Allen drew on his experience of the emerging story at Ebbsfleet, where we have been engaged for over 25 years, as well as our experience on many of the Government named garden settlement schemes around the country.
In subsequent posts, we explored some of the emerging principles in more detail and the complete series is now available as a printed publication. We hope that this publication will contribute to a better understanding of how garden style communities can be developed to provide sustainable places where people will want to live, work and play – as well as to make a contribution to meeting future housing needs.
In September 2018, PBA was delighted to win the Ebbsfleet Garden City Design Competition as part of the H.A.L.O model team. In the judges’ view, the HALO concept fulfilled exactly what they had hoped for: a design that was radical, but realisable. The panel was also excited by its possibilities, particularly because the design reflected the ‘three magnets’ concept developed by the garden city movement’s founder, Ebenezer Howard.
PBA's Ron Henry commented:
“PBA offered valuable engineering insight into the proposed vision making this a realistic and deliverable proposal. With our broad range of skills and knowledge of similar schemes delivered, we were able to demonstrate pragmatic design solutions that appealed to the selection panel. We are proud to be part of the innovative HALO model and team with Bradley Murphy Design and JTP.”
Could Howard’s original vision, that the Garden City Movement would resolve fundamental social and community problems for both city and country dwellers, be lost?
With the connections between place, mobility, health and wellbeing now increasingly present in our policy conversations, are we finally catching up with the Garden City pioneers?
Can we realise the dream of a cleaner, greener, and more economical garden city?
The challenges facing planners are markedly different to when the original Garden Settlements were being planned 100 years ago.