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Page last updated at 12:44 GMT, Sunday, 15 June 2008 13:44 UK

West Midlands: Your comments...

Nick Watson
Nick Watson
The Politics Show
West Midlands

Some of your comments on the programme...


I agree with Peter Luff. Redditch hasn't worked, Milton Keynes hasn't worked. There's not enough sun for solar panels.
Mary Unwin, Tewksbury

One would hope that these proposed eco-towns would be fairly self-contained, with lots of amenities as well as housing.
Stan Taylor, Willenhall

My home town of Lancashire was destroyed in the name of "new town" and I'm sure these eco towns will turn out the same.
Mrs Sutton, England

An incinerator is planned for Shrewsbury, but no one seems to have carried out any research into the health implications of its installation. The Government need to do this before taking it any further.
Nick Hall, Shrewsbury


Peter Luff has hit the nail right on the head. Eco-towns are a good idea in principle, but the Government has missed the point that has made them work in other countries - that they are in existing towns where the transport infrastructure and employment already exists.
Practically all of the Government's proposed sites are in the countryside, well away from existing major towns, and without good and cheap public transport. If they're built they're going to be populated by commuters who are going to get in their cars and drive to work. Eco-friendly? Hardly!
Brian Asbury, UK

If the EU is fining councils for land fill, why don't we just ignore the EU directive as other countries do?
Richard Edwards, England

What seems to have become taboo within the BBC is the issue of overpopulation. When dealing with construction upon Greenfield sites, should you not feel obliged to give some time to consideration of the need to live upon a finite planet?
Paul Arnold, UK

You can't just plonk 15000 people in an isolated rural situation and expect them to stay there. The reality is The Long Marston new town will become a satellite commuter suburb for Birmingham and Coventry.
It's right in the middle of a Zone between the Avon and the Cotswold Escarpment where the movements of HGVs are controlled because of the very poor roads and bridges. The big winners here will be the developers and the MOD through their multi-million claw back deal.
David Cranage, UK

The way to approach eco towns is as a development similar to that planned for Dunsford Park in Surrey, developing a satellite to existing groups of villages, where, for example local services can be enhanced and complemented. In my view it's important to look at manageable sizes, no greater than 2500 houses.
Kate Royston, UK

Peter Luff hit the nail on the head: Eco-towns must be directly connected to the local "centre of gravity". The Freibourg town with a 4km direct tram route into the town to access existing employment, shops etc is positive planning with good 'Eco' results.
The Long Marston proposal is exactly the opposite: a theoretical 'wish list' of hoped-for attributes rather than tapping in to established infrastructure. Parachuting a new town into the middle of nowhere with no obvious directional focus is a formula for a totally car-based society as residents head in all directions for work, education, shopping etc, i.e. the reverse of the 'Eco' intention.
David Moore, England

We just came back from a trip to the south of germany. No naked flute players to be seen, although there was the occasional guy with pony tail. What was plenty of is that nearly every house. Is it cheaper in Germany? Is it easier to get by there? Is it subsidized? Is the UK missing an opportunity?
Jos, UK

I am originally from Germany but have been living in the Midlands for some time.
The Freiburg Vauban development is very different from the so-called 'ecotowns' proposed for the West Midlands. Whereas the Vauban neighbourhood is part of the urban area of the city of Freiburg, the developments proposed in this region are in the middle of the countryside with a lack of jobs, services and transport connections in these areas.
What can be learnt from the Freiburg example is to create eco-friendly neighbourhoods within the existing towns and cities in the West Midlands.
Stefan, England/Germany

You state that 'both of our local sites also have a military past' - well, the site for Curborough, which the Government misleadingly describes as proposed for a disused airfield, would in fact be mostly on greenfields. 87% of the former WW11 airfield in Fradley is already covered with a big industrial park and a residential estate - it can't be used twice!
It is also NOT far enough away from existing settlements to have the separate identity that the Government states an eco-town should have; it is in fact just over 1 mile from the historic city of Lichfield and just over half a mile from homes in the existing village of Fradley and, in fact, within this village's boundaries, not Curborough's at all.
It is all a huge eco-sham to boost the Government's green credentials and would do massive harm to existing populations nearby.
Jan Green, UK

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