CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Building on green spaces is not the way to solve the housing problem

25 September, 2020

Trees under threat at Dixon Clark Court

• ANDREW Bosi (We can draw lessons from the Highbury Corner ‘consultation’, September 18) refers to my suggestion of 2011 that the arboretum at the corner should be linked to the green space round Dixon Clark Court by closing the eastern arm of the former gyratory.

I hoped, by that, both to head off any raids that might be planned on the green space and to achieve a rational traffic solution.

In the event a large slice has been taken off the eastern side of the arboretum for the controversial traffic rearrangement and Islington Council is persisting with its plan to build extensively on the green space round Dixon Clark Court.

This is in face of innumerable publications emphasising the importance of contact with greenery for both physical and mental health, as emphasised in the report of London mayor Sadiq Khan’s London Green Spaces Commission and in the Friends of the Earth’s report, England’s Green Space Gap, both published this year.

The residents of Dixon Clark Court were misled in consultation by the council’s erroneous assertion that they would somehow have more green space after 41 new housing units were built on it than before; as was the planning committee.

The council should recognise the critical importance of a green environment and cease their policy of building on the green spaces in their own housing estates. Building on such green spaces, especially in so green-starved a borough as Islington, is not the way to solve the housing problem.

JAMES DUNNETT
James Dunnett Architects, N1

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