Cotswold District Council Leads the Way With New Advice to Help Developers Go Green
Cotswold District Council is encouraging developers to incorporate high quality green infrastructure into new developments. Green infrastructure (GI) is the network of natural and semi-natural features within and between our villages, towns and cities. These features range from street trees, green roofs and private gardens to parks, rivers and woodlands. Not only does GI provide benefits such as recreational space and places to grow food, it has other benefits such as flood alleviation and creating habitats for wildlife, which in turn, also help with the challenges of climate change.
By thinking about GI right from the start of the design process, even at the land purchase stage, we can make sure that we make the most of the benefits of green infrastructure. This could include installing a new cycle/foot path or enhancing existing wildlife habitats or creating wildflower areas in our parks and gardens .
To promote GI, the Council has produced an advice leaflet for developers, which is available to download on the Council’s website. The leaflet has been prepared as part of a partnership project between Cotswold District Council and other neighbouring councils. The project has been led by Building with Nature, a new ground-breaking benchmark for green infrastructure in new developments.
Cllr Clive Webster, Cabinet Member for Landscape and Heritage said “We are keen to encourage everyone to do their bit to improve the green infrastructure and natural environment of the District and that includes those who wish to create new developments here. By designing new developments with high quality GI as a priority, we will get better and healthier places to live and work which will benefit current and future residents. I would like to challenge developers to see just how far they can go in creating a new development that delivers the best GI in the District. By continuing to work with developers, local communities and other partners to help create and enhance GI, Cotswold District Council will provide a better place to for us to live, work and visit.”
Work is currently underway on a new GI Strategy for the District. A number of parish and town councils have already contributed to the draft strategy, which looks at where key GI is located and sets out priorities for how the GI network could be enhanced and its benefits more fully realised.
Notes to Editors:
- The advice leaflet is available on the website here. (/media/1732602/GI-Pre-App-Advice-Note-June-2019.pdf)
- The project to create the advice leaflet was funded by the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government via their Innovation Fund and also involved a number of other neighbouring councils.
- The Building with Nature initiative came out of a collaboration between Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust (GWT) and the University of the West of England (UWE), and was borne of a desire to have a proactive approach to nature-friendly development, sensitive to location and context, that cares about long-term maintenance and management. https://www.buildingwithnature.org.uk/about.)
- The Council has also included key principles for designing effective green infrastructure and high quality landscape within the Cotswold Design Code which forms part of the Local Plan, which was adopted last summer.