Today the Government has launched a consultation on a proposal for an Urban Development Corporation to deliver Ebbsfleet as a Garden City. The consultation states that the Development Corporation’s objective is to ‘secure the regeneration of its area’, however there is no mention of the Garden City principles or how they will be achieved.
As set out in the TCPA’s recent publication on delivering Garden Cities ‘The Art of Building a Garden City: Garden City Standards for the 21st Century’, the Association believes that if the Government is truly committed to ensuring Ebbslfeet is a Garden City then it must demonstrate how the Garden City principles will be upheld as the project is delivered.
TCPA chief executive Kate Henderson said:
“Unlike the Government’s recently published Locally Led Garden Cities prospectus, the consultation on a proposed Urban Development Corporation at Ebbsfleet does not set out the Garden City principles. Without including these principles the Government risks failing to build a much needed consensus for high quality growth.
We share Government’s commitment to housing growth and desire for Ebbsfleet to be a successful development. However in order to achieve this, the Government must create a Development Corporation that is capable of delivering the very best environmental and social standards and properly fulfil the ideals of the Garden City Movement.
The TCPA will be responding to the consultation, strongly urging Government to include the Garden City principles in the terms of reference for the Ebbsfleet Development Corporation. By including the principles there is a real chance to make the most of the opportunity that Garden Cities present to create high quality, beautiful and inclusive places with genuinely affordable housing and strong social objectives.”
The TCPA has been promoting the benefits of the New Town Development Corporation approach (which differs from the Urban Development Corporation model in a number of ways). Recent debate on the Infrastructure Bill in the House of Lords which included a proposed amendment to New Towns legislation, highlighted cross party support for embedding positive objectives for development corporations.