Brownfield First Report from the Environmental Industries Commission

The report looks at the practical issues and economics of brownfield development  with the aim of encouraging a positive approach to the subject by government, local authorities, developers and BrownfieldFirstconstruction and property professionals. The EIC has this to say:

The UK’s rich industrial heritage, rising population and a constrained space makes the reuse of previously developed or brownfield land an essential part of the delivery of new developments throughout the UK. Further establishing this need, Environmental Industries Commission (EIC) has launched the report, Brownfield First: making better use of our land, drawing on long-term expertise to identify ways in which development on brownfield land can be sustainably increased benefitting the environment and the economy.

While currently only 10-20% of development in the UK takes place on sites classified as brownfield, the latest statistics from the Homes and Communities Agency indicates that there is approximately 61,920 ha of brownfield land in England, with 54% considered derelict or vacant while the remainder is in some form of use with potential for redevelopment. DCLG figures (2010) suggests approximately 35,000 ha of this brownfield land is suitable for housing development, further establishing the potential of brownfield in creating sustainable communities combining housing, retail, as well as commercial or industrial development.

Brownfield First: making better use of our land is the latest is a series of EIC work on sustainable development, and contaminated land, a portfolio of work existing since EIC’s founding in 1995.

As stated by Peter Atchison, Chairman of EIC Contaminated Land Working Group, “Brownfield first offers the practical solution to two issues facing the UK: the need for more sustainable development and use of previously developed site.”

Recent reports have suggested that brownfield land has the capacity to support over 1.8 million new homes, yet despite this recent Government figures show a decline in the proportion of homes being built on such land.

It also includes before and after pictures of one of our projects!