NIMBY’s – Why do people fight more homes being built?

With the Party Political Conference season there has been a yet more talk during the last few weeks about the need for more homes, and as part of this there is talk of Nimbyism and making changes to the Planning System in order to speed up the development process.

I am working with a local community who accept that there has to be more homes, and that there is a need for new homes to be built in their neighbourhood. However, to go with the homes the community is insisting that they get the ‘high quality’ public realm and urban design which the Planners promised them during the strategic planning stage of the planning process.

But in practice the development sites are being brought forward one-at-a-time and no one seems to be responsible for (or bothered with) delivering the high quality public realm, or other infrastructure, which is required to make high density work.

Therefore the community is fighting to reject development which they would otherwise accept. At the moment they feel that they are getting the raspberry without the ripple, and this is why many communities end up being NIMBYs.

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One Response to NIMBY’s – Why do people fight more homes being built?

  1. Walden Pond says:

    As a landscape architect/land planner, I have designed a lot of land projects. The biggest problem with residential development is the vast waste of land for “big backyards” that no one uses and pollute with chemicals to keep the lawns “healthy” and green. I don’t have a problem with big houses, just big lawns that people mow that have really no ecological value. Many times these lot sizes have been determined 50-60 years ago by people who had no idea what they were doing, but also had so much land around that they didn’t have any idea what the country would be like now-suburban sprawl connected by commercial corridors. Suburban communities should have lots just big enough to surround the house with an appropriate setback, say 25 all around, with conserved lands beyond the back lot line that is untouched, ungraded or disturbed in anyway. A larger maintained “common area” should be provided for group play, field games, playgrounds, gatherings, maybe stormwater management, etc. I have 5.5 acres where I mow around the house. The rest of it is woods, shrub brush or wetlands. However, some of my new neighbors with more acreage have been compelled to mow their property from one corner to the other on a weekly basis for absolutely no reason, other than to keep the “vermin” under control. This attitude is the epitome of ignorance. I don’t understand this at all. Who would want five acres of lawn that they never use for anything other than mowing? It defies logic. I wouldn’t even care if someone with 0.5 acres didn’t mow their lawn. It amazes me how uneducated people are regarding ecology, ecosystems, wildlife and natural habitat. I believe ecology should be taught starting in elementary school to stop the destruction and waste of our natural areas.

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