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Association of Directors of Environment Economy Planning and Transport ADEPT issue Making Space For Waste guide

Developers are being urged to make sure that waste management and recycling needs are an integral part of the planning of new developments. They are also being warned that they must expect to help fund the provision of facilities to ensure that the impact of kerbside collections on the street scene are minimised.

The advice comes in the Making Space For Waste guide, published today (Friday 18th June 2010) by the Association of Directors of Environment, Economy, Planning and Transport (ADEPT). The guide recognises that households in some areas are now producing up to 24 kilogrammes of waste / recyclables each week. It insists that consideration of how waste will be managed must become embedded into the planning process in order to avoid it becoming an after thought.

ADEPT President Alison Quant says: "Historically, waste management has been considered at the end of the development process, once the roads and buildings have been constructed, which has resulted in a lack of storage space for residents and poor access for collection staff. Our aim is to ensure that in the future we design and build streets where waste can be stored conveniently yet unnoticed, and collected easily."

The guide includes comprehensive advice on how to incorporate waste infrastructure into the planning of new developments – and even suggests opportunities where recycling facilities can enhance the local environment. It includes:

Design principles and minimum standards for internal and external storage, and collection points

Guidance on minimum contributions from developers for containers, storage compounds and household recycling centres

Principles for co-locating waste facilities alongside domestic properties as well as in commercial settings

Principles of design to ensure good access for collection vehicles

Emphasis on the importance of early communication with local authorities throughout the development process.

The guide suggests that the principles of Making Space For Waste should include internal, external and communal space for the storage of waste and recyclables. It also highlights the importance of not underestimating the effects of poor planning, which can result in street scenes cluttered with unsightly bins, and collection lorries struggling with inadequate space to operate safely and efficiently.

New ideas featured in the guide include the UK’s first underground vacuum waste management system in Wembley, north London. Three inlets situated in the courtyard of a new development allow residents to deposit dry recyclable, organic and residual waste into separate colour-coded containers. The waste is sucked through underground points to a central bulking point where it is stored in airtight containers for collection.

Julia Barrett Chairman of ADEPT’s Waste Panel, believes the new guide will be invaluable. "Effective waste collection systems which maximise the opportunity for recycling and composting make an important contribution to the future of our environment," she says. "This guide, which is suitable for adoption as Supplementary Planning Guidance, demonstrates that it is possible to maximise the efficient use of the planet’s limited resources through high quality waste collection and recycling whilst providing clean, safe and attractive environments to live and work in."

The ADEPT report Making Space For Waste can be downloaded in full from www.cssnet.org.uk.

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