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Research casts doubt on garden village green credentials

An artist's impression of the new Long Marston Garden Village
An artist's impression of the new Long Marston Garden Village

New garden village developments such as that at Long Marston Airfield will condemn residents to car-dependent lifestyles, according to new research published last week.

A report by the group Transport for New Homes, assessed 20 of England’s new garden village settlements including Long Marston, and concludes that most are planned in the wrong locations, far from town centres and rail stations.

It says they also lack local facilities and their streets are designed around car use while funding for walking, cycling and public transport is missing.

Overall the Government wants to build 50 garden village settlements to help tackle the country’s housing supply crisis, presenting the new communities as green and sustainable.

The Stratford Residents Action Group (SRAG), which opposes the route of a proposed relief road associated with the Long Marston Garden Village development, has welcomed the research.

Marion Homer, chair of SRAG, said: “We have always questioned the green credentials of the development at Long Marston and the road proposed to sustain the houses. We’re delighted to see this highlighted at a national level.”

Responding to the report, a spokesperson from CALA Homes, the developer behind the Long Marston Garden Village, said: “Our vision for Long Marston Airfield is to create a sustainable new community where people can live, work and play, with a range of facilities within walking distance. The first phase of 400 homes will include a new community hub with the potential for employment units, shops and a community centre. 51 acres of public open space on site will provide sports pitches, a multi-use games area and an extensive network of footpaths throughout the development.

"The wider Garden Village proposal incorporates further amenities, including primary and secondary schools, a local centre, a business park and healthcare and leisure facilities."

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