Suburban sprawl and climate change
Sir, – In the context of the current housing and climate change crisis, and with the legitimate need to increase densification, we should not rush uncritically to reproduce the housing tower blocks already discredited in such places as Ballymun, which most people would agree are not suitable for family living.
Instead I propose that we consider a different housing type, low-rise high-density housing. This is commonly used in Denmark and Holland. It uses buildings of three to four floors arranged around narrow streets and squares and is inclusive of larger green public parks with integrated uses such as housing, work, play, and social, cultural and commercial uses, etc.
This pattern would increase social interaction, reduce suburban loneliness, obviate the need for long commuting distances, reduce suburban sprawl and be a much more efficient use of valuable agricultural land and services infrastructure.
This model would be more acceptable to our citizens than high rise, and we could move forward confidently to making our cities and rural towns more sustainable in the light of the looming climate crisis. – Yours, etc,