The Garden City Principles are a distillation of the key elements that have made the Garden City model of development so successful, articulated for a 21st century context. Taken together, the principles form an indivisible and interlocking framework for the delivery of high-quality places.


A Garden City is a holistically planned new settlement which enhances the natural environment and offers high-quality affordable housing and locally accessible work in beautiful, healthy and sociable communities. The Garden City Principles are an indivisible and interlocking framework for their delivery, and include:

  • Land value capture for the benefit of the community.

  • Strong vision, leadership and community engagement.

  • Community ownership of land and long-term stewardship of assets.

  • Mixed-tenure homes and housing types that are genuinely affordable.

  • A wide range of local jobs in the Garden City within easy commuting distance of homes.

  • Beautifully and imaginatively designed homes with gardens, combining the best of town and country to create healthy communities, and including opportunities to grow food.

  • Development that enhances the natural environment, providing a comprehensive green infrastructure network and net biodiversity gains, and that uses zero-carbon and energy-positive technology to ensure climate resilience.

  • Strong cultural, recreational and shopping facilities in walkable, vibrant, sociable neighbourhoods.

  • Integrated and accessible transport systems, with walking, cycling and public transport designed to be the most attractive forms of local transport.


Image courtesy of Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation.