Garden design for city spaces
London’s King’s Cross and Nine Elms mega-regeneration projects have turned to garden designers to bring a more individual approach to their landscaping. Will the trend really spread in 2016?
Garden city and suburb
The Government is putting £310m into helping the first garden city for a century get off the starting blocks. The support is intended to help deliver the first 15,000 homes at the long-awaited Ebbsfleet garden city in Kent. Greater Didcot Garden Town and garden communities in North Essex have also won Government funding.
That is not all — masterplanners and developers across the country are working up plans for garden suburb-style large-scale developments.
Luxury sky gardens
The Sky Garden at 20 Fenchurch Street might have got mixed reviews since its opening last year, but a garden seems to be the latest must-have for luxury high-rise apartment buildings. Schemes in London featuring sky gardens include EcoWorld Ballymore’s Wardian London and Harry Handelsman’s Manhattan Loft Gardens.
This winter’s floods have drawn attention to the numbers of new homes controversially being built on flood plains, and both factors provide a reminder of the value of sustainable urban drainage systems (SUDS). Government policy stopped short of requiring SUDS to be incorporated into new residential developments potentially at risk, but events are giving developers building in vulnerable locations food for thought.
ON THE WAY DOWN
Shifting Government policy on renewable energy subsidies has generated uncertainty in the sector and looks set to seriously impede the growth of solar farms in the UK.
New social rented housing
A changing policy environment is expected to significantly reduce the number of homes for affordable rent developed by housing associations. The Government is backing the development of more shared-ownership homes and starter homes for sale instead.