Eco town Case Study White Hill Bordon Whitehill Bordon is located in the south east of England – 46 miles from central London. The nearest big cities are Guildford to the north and Portsmouth to the south. The town has grown around the Ministry of Defence’s presence in the town. It is set in rolling countryside and it is about a 40 minute drive to the sea. A new national park is being established – the South Downs National Park – and Whitehill Bordon will serve as a gateway to it. Here is a map showing White Hills location. About the town
The town does not possess the historical features or distinctive characteristics associated with most small towns. In particular it has no recognisable town centre and relatively few community facilities. The eco-development presents an opportunity to achieve a number of objectives – meeting the clear need for better local facilities, helping the community to protect the natural environment and providing affordable and decent homes. Aims of national and local government The regeneration of the town is being led by a multi-agency partnership which is called the ‘Delivery Board’.
This has just been set up and has representatives from the following organisations: East Hampshire District Council, Hampshire County Council, Whitehill Town Council, Whitehill Bordon Town Partnership, Ministry of Defence and the Homes and Communities Agency. The meetings will be held in public and will have an independent chairman. There will also be more opportunities for the community to influence the project. Anyone will be able to join new groups and they will discuss issues in the town and make recommendations to the Delivery Board. Around ? 10 million was given by the government.
The funding aims to provide: affordable housing and sustainable living. It will also provide carbon neutral developments and creative use of waste and high rates of recycling. Local employment is hopefully going to be provided and the locals will have a say in the development. Local services and schools will be built so less demand for use of cars. Benefits for the community The local community will gain a lot of perks from being an ecotown. These include free Wi-Fi in the town centre will enable communities to join together; Free loft insulation is given to householders to help save energy.
Over 50 green spaces around and within the town are identified to protect and enhance wildlife. A boardwalk, made from recycled materials is being built; also Eco-grants are available to local businesses to help reduce their carbon footprint. Finally the initiative hopes to create 5,500 jobs by 2028. Current news Whitehill Bordon is the only place in South East England where homeowners can get free loft and cavity wall insulation – which will help save money on fuel bills.
The free energy-saving improvements are possible thanks to Eco-town status and could save each household up to ? 265 a year. If 1,200 homes sign-up for the insulation then it could save the town around ? 300,000 on its domestic fuel bills per year – as well as reducing the CO2 emissions by an estimated 1,300 tonnes a year. Interest-free loans, of up to ? 10,000, which are called Eco-fit loans, are also available for homeowners living in the Eco-town. Requirements of an eco-town The following are listed as essential requirements for an eco-town: Between 5,000-20,000 homes * a place with a distinct identity but good links to surrounding towns and cities * a zero-carbon development, excelling in at least one area of environmental technology * a good range of facilities within the town, such as business and leisure spaces, a secondary school and local shopping areas * at least 30% affordable housing, providing a mixture of both housing and communities * Eco-towns should be sustainable communities that are resilient to and appropriate for the climate change now accepted as inevitable. They should be planned to minimise future vulnerability in a changing climate, and with both mitigation and adaptation in mind. Limitations * Measures for preventing global warming in the region Environmental town-building plans that adopt viewpoints for the prevention of global warming promotion of 3Rs that consider CO2 emissions. The 3rs are reduce, reuse and recycle. * •They’re generally being built on Greenfield (i. e. undeveloped, natural) land, which works against smart growth principles.
Smart Growth hinges on infill and re-development, rather than paving over more Greenfield. * •Cost. It’s expensive to build sustainable communities, and for people to buy homes in them as a result. * First time buyers and less affluent families may not be able to afford the house prices. * Construction and completion of the proposed eco-town is likely to result in an increase in the levels of traffic and cause more congestion. Also countryside will be destroyed. Opposition In 2008 people were signing up against the proposed eco-towns by the government by the rate of 2000 a day * There have now been 60,000 protesters who have given their signatures to oppose the towns * Critics argue that they are ill-conceived, environmentally unfriendly and would destroy some of England’s most beautiful areas. * Ben Fogle, Duncan Goodhew, Dame Judi Dench, John Nettles and former Formula One ace Johnny Herbert are all celebrities that are against the new proposals. The liberal democrats are against the government’s eco-towns policy and are opposition to the development of new settlements in the green belt. The Situation Today Eco-towns came about by the government just before the global recession. Many shortlisted sites have been dropped and only 4 are going ahead. Rackheath, North West Bicester, White Hill Bordon and St Austell have survived from the 15 shortlisted towns of 2008. These developments are set to finish around 2020 so there are no finished eco-towns.
This means that we don’t know the true benefits and if they will be successful. Even today many people don’t want the eco towns and the government in the economic state may not be able to get them finished by 2020 due to lack of funding and the economic climate. Eco-towns are not necessary in today’s society which is why so many have been scrapped. The government are more concerned with other issues that a re more important than eco town0s and due to their high costs, opposition and lack of government money is a problem.