New planning rules have been approved by councillors which mean new builds in Cambridge will have to meet a very specific requirement.
Under the new rules, every second house built in the historic university city must have a bird box, or similar wildlife-friendly element, installed.
Property developers will be asked to show that new projects in the city will enhance biodiversity by, for instance, integrating bird, bat or insect boxes or by building ‘hedgehog highways’.
On Tuesday (January 11), Cambridge City Council voted to approve use of the Biodiversity Supplementary Planning Document for projects submitted to the Greater Cambridge Shared Planning team.
The team is a partnership between the city council and the South Cambridgeshire District Council who will be asked to approve the document next month.
A draft of the document suggests that the Councils could make their approval of an “Ecological Design Strategy or a species-specific Biodiversity Mitigation Strategy” a condition of planning permission being granted.
The draft also says that councils will expect “on all major housing developments 50% of the dwellings/units will have features such as integrated bird, bat or insect boxes provided”.
It adds: “All fencing will be expected to be hedgehog friendly and hedgehog highways should be incorporated throughout the development.”
The document also stipulates the councils’ commitment to increase biodiversity by 20 per cent in all new developments in Cambridge.