Prince’s eco-town gets green light

An eco-town partly designed by Prince Charles' architectural foundation has been given final approval by the local planning authority.

The 5,500-home town, which will be known as Sherford, will be built near Plymouth, in Devon, by developer Red Tree.

The Prince’s Foundation for the Built Environment said the town will have “the logic of a traditional market town”.

It is also expected to use on-site wind turbines and small-scale combined heat and power, and will be designed to encourage people to walk instead of using cars.

The houses will be designed to make the most use of natural light, to reduce wastage of materials, and to use environmentally-friendly, non-toxic materials.

Facilities such as a reuse centre will encourage recycling and pedestrians and cyclists will be given priority in the road system.

The scheme is expected to create up to 7,000 new jobs and will have a community park larger than London’s Hyde Park.

Hank Dittmar, chief executive of the Prince’s Foundation for the Built Environment, said: “The Prince’s Foundation aspiration for Sherford is that it will take our work to a new level of environmental and social sustainability.

“The design vision for Sherford begins to address the house building challenge that Government has laid out when it speaks of eco-towns.”

Red Tree said that Sherford will raise the bar for the development of future communities, and that last year the application received an exemplar rating from the Building Research Establishment (BRE).

The plans had caused some controversy in the local area, however, with some residents setting up the Residents Against Sherford group to protest against the building of the new town.

Unlike Poundbury, the town in Dorset which the Prince built a decade ago on the Duchy of Cornwall, Sherford will be built on private land owned by Red Tree.

Kate Martin

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