Laura Sharman 07 August 2020

Public back investment for ‘15-minute’ communities

There is a growing trend to create '15-minute communities' through investment in public health, green infrastructure and town centres, a new survey has revealed.

The research, from Arcadis and YouGov, shows the public and local leaders both see the post-COVID recovery as an opportunity to re-think how communities are viewed.

It shows key priorities support the idea of people having access to more of what they need within 15 minutes of their home.

Mark Cowlard CEO of Arcadis UK and Ireland, said: 'There is a growing alignment emerging about how the idea of ‘15-minute communities’ can be a key part of the recovery.

'This is about developing much more active travel, alongside local amenities, public spaces and high streets we can use and visit including for work, and homes that are greener, more liveable and flexible.'

According to the public poll, the highest priority to help their local area recover economically from the pandemic was health infrastructure (36%), followed by improvements to the high street and town centre amenities (30%), and green infrastructure (29%).

Clare Elliott, service director, economic growth and skills at Wakefield Council, said: 'Since the pandemic hit, we have seen a renewed interest and appreciation in people exploring what their local area has to offer, from local businesses to the natural environment.

'We’ve also seen people showing a much stronger environmental consciousness and a determination for the future to be as sustainable as possible.'

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