DCAN 8: Housing in Existing Urban Areas
1.5 Recent planning policy in Northern Ireland has reflected an international and national commitment to achieving more sustainable patterns of living. This has been reflected in the drive towards an urban renaissance, focusing on maintaining compact urban areas, maximising the use of neighbourhood resources, and creating high quality urban environments.
1.6 Higher density development and the re-use of derelict urban land can help to achieve a range of sustainability goals, with a more effi cient use of land, the encouragement of more environmentally friendly forms of travel including walking, cycling and public transport, and a reduction in the dominance of the car. However, it is also important to recognise that sustainable development is not achieved solely by building new units, as the re-use of existing buildings is in effect the most sustainable form of development. This can include the conversion of existing buildings such as former factory premises in order to accommodate apartment development.
1.7 Care is therefore needed to ensure that proposals for new housing in urban areas are sustainable and result in attractive housing which is capable of meeting the needs of both current and future generations.