For many cities, the way that they change and develop over time can cause certain areas to flourish, while others end up underutilised and neglected. In particular, land once used for industry often lies redundant, once its purpose has been fulfilled, for extended periods of time. The good news is that these brownfield sites, as they are termed by planners, can be prime candidates for sites to build new houses and infrastructure. In this blog we look at some of the benefits of using brownfield land for urban regeneration.
Creates more housing
The UK government’s housing targets require them to build 300,000 new homes a year by the mid 2020s. The problem is identifying areas in which these new homes can be built, which is where the redevelopment of brownfield land comes in.
Brownfield land provides an excellent solution to meeting housing targets for a number of reasons. Available brownfield sites are often located in big cities, where the demand for housing is the highest. The larger infrastructure is also already likely to be in place to support a new community of people living in the area.
Prevents loss of countryside
An analysis of Brownfield Land Registers conducted by The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) in early 2018, revealed that there was enough space on brownfield land to build at least 1 million new homes in the UK.(1) The more brownfield land available, the less pressure there is on councils to release greenfield land so that the UK government can meet their new housing targets, thereby preserving more countryside.
Improve living conditions
Regenerating run-down and disused brownfield sites not only benefits the people who will move into new developments built on the land, but also has a positive impact on the existing residents and businesses in the surrounding area. New developments inevitably lead to the building of some new elements of infrastructure, and also go some way to increasing the desirability of the area.
Cleans up contaminated areas
A major benefit of brownfield land regeneration is that it helps to cleans up areas that could be a risk to local residents. Brownfield land areas are often contaminated from their previous use as industrial sites and so regenerating them can help to remove any health and safety dangers that remain if they are left abandoned.
Regent Land & Developments are a specialist developer of brownfield sites for residential and mixed-use land-led schemes across London and the South East. Click here to find out more about what us.