If Flint wants to see land available for development in these eco-towns, she need only get in a helicopter and fly over them. They have the lowest residential densities in Europe, the most road-space and, incidentally, the greatest problem in generating communal cohesion. They can and do handle more people each year, even if it does mean more flats and fewer gardens."
"Any fool can build in what remains of the countryside and call it eco-something. It will not save life on Earth, but merely drive ever more people into hypermobility.
The way to preserve the green of the countryside and maximise the carbon-efficiency of human habitation is to make today's cities work better. They are full of useable land. They have suffered enough insults from politicians for the past century. Cities are the new green."
"[Caroline] Flint wants between 30% and 40% of houses in her eco-towns to be for the poor. Her boss, Hazel Blears, wants "half the households" not to be allowed cars, presumably also the poor. She does not say who will live in these ghettos. The idea that they can be made both privately financed and "affordable", whatever that means nowadays, for locally employed families is laughable. A 6,000-house eco-town cannot begin to sustain a full range of services, nor would any developer touch an estate where nobody can have a car.
To be poor without a car in a British new town is hell. That is why the last census showed only 14% of residents in Bracknell and 19% in Milton Keynes as car-less, against a national average of 27%. People have to get out of these planners' dream towns. Anyway, it is only big cities that do without cars: 37% of Londoners and 48% of Mancunians. Wild horses would not get Flint or Blears to live in their new towns, yet like city builders down the ages, they inflict them on the poor."