What is Building for Life 12?

Building for Life 12 is a new guide which is designed to help all those who are involved in the planning process design new developments so that they enhance communities. Building for life 12 is a set of 12 questions which take into account the surrounding settlements and environment to make sure that any new developments benefit the whole community. They are designed to be answered by a range of people, and can be answered by people who don't have a specific planning background. The questions are designed to be scored on a traffic light system with the aim that a new development will score at least 9 greens. Any questions which score a red should be reconsidered.

1. Connections

Does the scheme integrate into its surroundings by reinforcing existing connections and creating new ones, while also respecting existing buildings and land uses around the development site?

2. Facilities and services

Does the development provide (or is it close to) community facilities, such as shops, schools, workplaces, parks, play areas, pubs or cafes?

3. Public transport

Does the scheme have good access to public transport to help reduce car dependency?

4. Meeting local housing requirement

Does the development have a mix of housing types and tenures that suit local requirements?

5. Character

Does the scheme create a place with a locally inspired or otherwise distinctive character?

6. Working with the site and its context

Does the scheme take advantage of existing topography, landscape features (including water courses), trees and plants, wildlife habitats, existing buildings, site orientation and microclimate?

7. Creating well defined streets and spacesAre buildings designed and positioned with landscaping to define and enhance streets and spaces and are buildings designed to turn street corners well?

8. Easy to find your way around

Is the development designed to make it easy to find your way around?

9. Streets for all

Are streets designed in a way that encourage low vehicle speeds and allow them to function as social spaces?

10. Car Parking

Is resident and visitor parking sufficient and well integrated so that it does not dominate the street?

11. Public & private spaces

Will public and private spaces be clearly defined and designed to have appropriate access and be able to be well managed and safe in use?

12. External storage and amenity space

Is there adequate external storage space for bins and recycling, as well as vehicles and cycles?