07. Does the scheme exploit existing buildings, landscape or topography?
PPS3 (housing): ‘If done well, imaginative design and layout of new development can lead to a more efficient use of land without compromising the quality of the local environment.’
Few development sites come as empty blocks of land. Many have existing buildings and some are rich with archaeology or important natural environments. In some cases, buildings are listed or within conservation areas. In others, preservation orders apply to some trees.
New housing should respond to and reinforce locally distinctive patterns of development, landscape and culture. Historic environments and local landmarks can help give a neighbourhood a strong sense of identity, attracting residents and investors.
A design that reflects and improves the site and its surroundings will help create a sense of character. It does not have to copy the style of surrounding architecture to belong to an area, but may benefit by responding to the scale and materials of surrounding buildings, the aspect of the site and particular views.
Watch our video explanation
If you can't see the video(s) go to www.buildingforlife.org/redirects/videos
The 20 Criteria
Environment & community
Streets, parking & pedestrianisation
Design & construction
|Does the development provide (or is it close to) community facilities, such as a school, parks, play areas, shops, pubs or cafes?|
- Urban Design Compendium 2 (English Partnerships and Housing Corporation, 2007); p41, p65