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How do we build more homes in the countryside?

The Times reports on proposed ways of building more homes in the countryside without ruining it, following increased levels of ‘urban flight’ caused by the pandemic

The report notes that villages are reliant on cars, have ‘dying economies’ and lack young people, who can’t afford to live or work there.

It describes a utopian picture of the rural villages of the future: car-free; densely populated; walkable; economically vibrant; green; diverse; community-run and technologically advanced (benches that offer wi-fi and mobile charging points; smart bins that beep when they are full; street lights powered by footsteps).

The article outlines eight expert ideas on how to build more homes in rural areas without spoiling it:

  1. Build on brownfield
  2. Boost public transport
  3. Increase density
  4. Build more affordable homes
  5. Build beautiful
  6. Community and green space
  7. Build co-working hubs
  8. Agrivillages

The RSN Chief Executive Graham Biggs is quoted in the article discussing the need for affordable housing is rural communities:

“There is a general presumption against building in the countryside, but there are exceptions to this presumption: they are called rural exception sites. These are small-scale developments that are built in keeping with existing villages. Half a dozen houses here or there. The design aesthetics have to be sympathetic to the community and the countryside. Development is allowed but with caveats: they are built by housing associations and have to include affordable rent and shared ownership. There are restrictions about who it can be sold to in the future, it must meet local needs.”

Full article:

The Times - How do we build more homes in the countryside?
*Please be aware you will require a Times subscription to be able to read the full article

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