The Global View

Verdict on UK’s 15 eco-town arrives

field2.jpgThe government’s Eco Towns Challenge Panel – a crack squad of 15 men and women handpicked by the Ministry of Housing to beat the proposals for 15 potential locations for environmentally friendly towns around Britain into shape – have bared their fangs, sharpened their claws and delivered a damning indictment of the limp plans that landed on their desks.

At least, Greenbang reckons that’s what the government PRs wanted to say about the Eco Towns Challenge Panel’s latest report. Here’s what they really did say:

The fifteen experts on the Eco-towns Challenge Panel have today set out a series of recommendations for potential eco-town developers, designed to improve their plans to create world-leading sustainable developments.

Many bidders have been praised for their vision and commitment but others are warned that their ideas must be more ambitious or that they lack innovation.

John Walker, Chairman of the Eco-towns Challenge Panel, also minced his words about the proposals that ran by him:

“We have seen much to admire, but in all cases we are challenging the developers to take major steps forward. We want the final eco-towns to be better than the best of the current examples that do exist in the UK and the rest of Europe – clearly there is still a lot of work to do.”

If you fancy delving into the recommendations themselves, there’s more fun to be had:

Marston Vale: “The proposal for Marston Vale is encouraging” but “The transport strategy lacks innovation”

Curborough: “The proposal needs to be more ambitious, as it may be a good development by normal standards but it is not yet an eco-town.”

Rossington: “The development faces challenges over transport, employment, the relationship with the existing community and the need for regeneration. However, it is not all bad; there are some strong environmental assets.”

New Marston: “At present the New Marston bid looks like a typical commercial scheme.”

Miaow!