HEIF Publications Archive

HEIF Metropolitan Green Belt

The project draws together divergent academic and practice views on the purpose of green belt and the best means of achieving this. A key contribution was bringing together those with opposed positions to work through both the costs and benefits of the status quo and to understand better the politics of reform. The value of this rests in the nature of green belt policy, which has the characteristics of an institution that embeds the status quo and makes the politics of reform a particularly knotty problem.

The green belt, which since the 1960s has covered a large part of the Greater South East (GSE), is a very blunt policy instrument, ensuring both a high degree of enforcement and a range of unintended consequences. It has also led to a very polarised form of discussion about it, pitting critics (who see it as having extended commuting distances, restricted access to housing for residents of this region, and diverted attention from issues of environmental quality) against defenders (who see any change in its coverage or use as threatening a renewal of urban sprawl, and a degradation of residents’ quality of life. Such a broad-brush debate is unhelpful at the present time, when the region clearly faces a crisis of housing supply (with realistic estimates of provision falling well behind need) and the government has made clear that it will not contemplate any radical review or reform of green belt policy, though many local planning authorities may undertake ad hoc reviews. The purpose of this project was to assist in the development of collaborative initiatives from within the region to identify ways of modernising the green belt in ways that: enable a higher level of housing supply to be achieved on a compact basis in sites with good public transport access to employment centres, without impinging on areas of particular environmental quality; and secure the protection of the rest of the belt.

To meet this objective, the project will disseminate relevant research findings and promote constructive debate on two sets of issues:

  • the purpose and future form of green belt policy (inside and outside Greater London) in the context of contemporary housing provision and urban development planning in the region; and
  • how, in a era of localism, collaboration can effectively be pursued to develop an understanding of the wider planning/housing market issues, and to promote forms of development, including a modernisation of the green belt to meet the collective needs of the region’s residents.

metropolitanPublications

Reports and Articles

Final report launch 25 July 2016.


Multi-media
 

Videos

Film launch 25 July 2016.

Blogs

25 April 2016

Blanc, F. & Mace, A. Landscape planning, Workshop 5 blog.

10 March 2016

Blanc, F. & Mace, A. Infrastructure and land value: Transportation and housing, Workshop 4 blog.

11 February 2016

Blanc, F. & Mace, A. Garden cities and urban extensions, workshop three blog entry, Workshop 3 blog.

28 January 2016

Blanc, F. & Mace, A. Green Belt reviews and their outcomes, Workshop 2 blog.

21 January 2016

Blanc, F. & Mace, A. What's in a name? First workshop exploring purposes of the Metropolitan Green Belt, Workshop 1 blog.

3 December 2015

Blanc, F. & Mace, A. Green Belt Project Official Launch. Blog.

Interactive Media

Quiz: How well do you know the Metropolitan Greenbelt?

Events 

25 April 2016

LSE HEIF 5 MGB. Landscape planning, Workshop 5

10 March 2016

LSE HEIF 5 MGB. Infrastructure and land value: Transportation and housing, Workshop 4

11 February 2016

LSE HEIF 5 MGB. Garden cities and urban extensions, workshop three blog entry, Workshop 3

28 January 2016

LSE HEIF 5 MGB. Green Belt reviews and their outcomes, Workshop 2

21 January 2016

LSE HEIF 5 MGB. What's in a name? First workshop exploring purposes of the Metropolitan Green Belt, Workshop 1

3 December 2015

LSE HEIF 5 MGB. Green Belt Project Official Launch Blog

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