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Custom and Self Build as integral part of successful Garden Cities

'Custom and Self Build should be seen as an integral part of successful Garden Cities, Towns and Villages' says Mario Wolf, director of the Right to Build task force. Read on to find out how this relates to the task force's ongoing work with communities.

The diverse nature of Custom and Self Build housing aligns well with the Garden City principles.

Custom and Self Build homes have always been an integral element of successful Garden Cities, and a section of the masterplan for Welwyn Garden City was given over to Self Build plots.

More recently, Milton Keynes has facilitated a steady stream of opportunities for people who want to commission or build their own homes. Indeed, the TCPA’s Creating Garden Cities and Suburbs Today report specifically recognises that new Garden City projects should include Custom and Self Build housing.

Nearly all the finalists in the 2014 Wolfson Economics Prize competition proposed that Custom and Self Build housing play a key role in the creation of new Garden Cities. For example, Shelter’s highly commended submission argued that almost 2,000 of the 15,000 homes should be reserved for Custom and Self Builders. Shelter said that this approach would bring a string of benefits: ‘This will get building underway quickly, and add diversity and character to the new homes being built. Self Build will encourage early movers/pioneers, improve cash flow, and add diversity and character to our town from the start.’

It is no therefore surprise that our Right to Build Task Force is receiving significant interest from garden town and village promoters to include Custom and Self Build housing proposals into their strategies and that many of the new ‘garden village and town’ locations announced by the Department for Communities and Local Government in January 2017 include ambitious proposals for this form of housing. 

Read more about Custom Build here

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