London Residential is always delighted by reports of investment into our city and when that investment is coupled with a mission to make London greener we feel very happy indeed.
News that planners are encouraging house-builders to “design-in” green spaces such as meadows and allotments to specific new developments across the capital is not just welcomed by the residents they will house. An example of their city-wide benefits can be found in the completed redevelopment of an ex-council estate at Woodberry Down, Hackney. This new reservoir-fronted neighbourhood of 4,600 new homes plus nature reserve can now benefit everyone in the wider area. Sailing clubs, beekeepers, runners and families visiting the Wetlands Environmental Centre and Cafe are just some of those enjoying the finished project.
Another project piquing our interest is at Camley Street Natural Park, King's Cross where new-build flats overlook a nature reserve and the Regent canal. With careful nurturing, birds and butterflies have returned to this wildlife refuge in recent years, making it the perfect place for visitors to wander and watch barges float by.
Espoused by forums such as New London Landscape, these eco-friendly house-building principles - where in-built flood defences and encouragement of wildlife are standard - certainly have our approval. But will these regenerated green spaces make existing properties for sale, in King's Cross for example, more marketable? We say most definitely yes. Not only are they an attractive feature for potential London buyers but they will also become a future priority in forward-planing a response to global warming.
In the meantime, we’ll certainly be paying that jetty-garden a visit.
Planners see the sense in putting ecology at the heart of new housing projects. The memory is only too recent of those harsh and brutal post-war concrete high rise estates that crushed the spirit of so many people. Planners are now encouraging developers to “design in” green space — orchards, meadows and allotments — with built-in flood defences as an environmental priority.