New planning guidance for military bases draws from US model

Published: 5 Oct 2015

Author: Stephen Harness
New planning guidance for military bases draws from US model

Significant new guidance on the development and consolidation of military bases has been proposed as a result of a Churchill Fellowship undertaken by Stephen Harness of the Defence Infrastructure Organisation, part of the UK’s Ministry of Defence.

The proposals are a result of research at current and former military sites in the USA, New Zealand and Australia. Through them, Stephen aims to promote better use of land, including increased integration of military and civilian communities whilst also making facilities and sites more sustainable and resilient to change.

Stephen met with over 30 people representing the military, planning authorities and business groups, and liaised with researchers and planning institutes across the world whilst preparing his research. He also investigated best practice in the redevelopment of military sites, linking this to the initial design and layout of sites.

The main findings have been summarised into master planning principles to be followed in the design and consolidation of military sites, as well as identifying best practice in their redevelopment for other uses. They state that master plans for the development of sites should:

1. be based on longer-term 20-40 year timescales and on commonly understood sustainable design principles, focussing on the unique aspects of the site, its history and integration with the surrounding area, whilst supporting diversity of the community and its economic base;

2. be taken forward in a partnership, open and transparent process; and

3. integrate facilities with the local community to ensure that the plan is flexible, resilient and can adapt to long term changes in demand.

Stephen says, “By following this new guidance, new and consolidated military sites will be able to make better use of available land, become more sustainable and resilient to change, and provide benefits to the wider community.” 

Read the report

For more information: 

Stephen Harness: harnessplanningcom@gmail.com