Other Manuals and Briefings

The bin-lorry effect

How new homes and places are ruined by highways’ regulations and how we can fight back
David Milner

Highways departments’ well-intentioned rules or guidance have had a devastating effect on new housing developments over the past 80 years. Many have led to roads not streets, units not homes, and ‘could-be-anywhere’ housing developments, not real places with centres and edges. A range of rules have the effect of
stopping you getting out and about, preventing you meeting your neighbours, stopping you from creating communities and locking you into car dependence. For each rule the author suggests potential resolutions to help win the battle against poor places and prevent highways’ design from ruining our health and happiness.

  • Bin collectors cannot walk more than a few metres from the lorry to your bin
  • Designing our streets around bin lorries, instead of designing bin lorries around our streets
  • Minimum parking standards. Requiring new developments to provide minimum number of parking spaces per
  • home, which are often excessive and crudely decided upon, wastes land and helps to embed car use for the foreseeable future
  • Parking spaces must be overlooked by a kitchen or living room
  • Requiring large sweeping bends
  • Enforcing cul-de-sacs

David Milner is Projects Director at Create Streets

‘New places are designed by the wheelie bin operators’

Evidence to the Building Better Building Beautiful Commission, 2019

The bin-lorry effect Publication Urban Design Group
Create Streets