"Introduction to Carfree UK by Ed Beale"
Introduction to Carfree UK by Ed Beale Slateford Green, Edinburgh How Carfree UK Started Founded in January 2006 by 5 people from the UK who had been to the Towards Carfree Cities conferences in Berlin and Budapest. Steve Melia, Steve Ward, Ed Beale, Simon Field and Dave Morris were the founding committee, since joined by Anzir Boodoo, Martin Cassini and Rory McMullan. Carfree UK joined World Carfree Network at the Tabor meeting in May 2006. Carfree UK's Mission To promote Carfree housing developments to the following groups: Local government planning authorities Developers Housing associations The general public To campaign on specific sites where the conditions are favourable for a carfree housing development. The UK Situation 26% of UK households have no car (2001), 35% of households in London are carfree. Since 1989 there is new planning guidance: Minimum 60% of new developments to be on previously developed (“brownfield”) land – now 72% Minimum density 30 houses per hectare. Maximum parking allowances for new developments, instead of previous minimums Why Government Policy doesn't have the desired effect The desired effects of these government policies are: To reduce the amount of green field land built on To reduce traffic Whilst it meets the first objective quite well, the second is not so succesful – in practice doubling density only reduces per-capita traffic by 7% - because car ownership and use is not restricted. So local area traffic is worse. Carfree has Benefits for Everyone A solution to the problem of traffic caused by building denser housing is to build carfree. Benefits for Everyone: Developers can build more housing units on their land, without expensive underground parking Planning Authorities show commitment to sustainable development policies and avoid worsening traffic Residents get cheaper houses and higher quality community space including for children's play Carfree UK – Our Activities Presentation given to Bristol City Council introducing carfree housing and its benefits. Discussions with developers in London, Plymouth and Bristol to explore the possibility of carfree housing. Ongoing research into the market for carfree housing in the UK and the reasons why supportive policies not yet fully implemented. Campaigning on Specific Sites Sherford, a new town being built using New Urbanist design principles with high quality public transport – suggested carfree area. Exeter – Working with local traffic reduction action group; carfree housing suggested as one of 5 key ways to reduce city traffic. Kings Cross, London – Discussions with developers about reducing parking on the site. Carfree UK – Future Opportunities One day conference planned for 2008 in conjunction with the University of the West of England. Funding application for a website to identify the market for carfree housing. The UK government plans 5 new “zero carbon” eco-towns – Carfree UK is hoping to influence transport. Carfree UK – More Information For more information, see our website: http://www.carfree.org.uk/ or email firstname.lastname@example.org