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Design competition set to develop a modern, healthy city at Ebbsfleet

PUBLISHED: 13:00 09 March 2018 | UPDATED: 11:48 12 March 2018

Ebbsfleet is located 17 minutes from central London by high-speed rail and two hours from Paris and Brussels by Eurostar. Picture: Google

Ebbsfleet is located 17 minutes from central London by high-speed rail and two hours from Paris and Brussels by Eurostar. Picture: Google

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Ebbsfleet is to become the site of the first new garden city of the 21st century, and the an international design competition is being launched to ensure the best minds in the landscape profession are involved in its creation.

Set to create 15,000 new homes, 30,000 new jobs and seven city parks, it is the largest of the 10 Healthy New Town initiatives being run by the NHS to show that land can be used to deliver health benefits.

The competition, managed by the Landscape Institute, aims to find the best way of developing a truly modern, healthy city.

Located 17 minutes from central London by high-speed rail and two hours from Paris and Brussels by Eurostar, Ebbsfleet is a major railway hub between London and Europe.

It also has a unique topography that could be incorporated into any design concept - from frontages along the River Thames, to lakes and extensively-quarried chalk hills and valleys, to historic sites such as the Gilbert Scott-designed church in Northfleet.

Michael Cassidy, chairman of Ebbsfleet development corporation, said: “Ebbsfleet Garden City’s landscape with its white chalk cliffs, open, green spaces and lakes provides us with a unique opportunity to provide a landscape that challenges the norm.”

Ideas are invited from individual or team landscape professionals, with multidisciplinary teams incorporating artists and engineers particularly encouraged.

Entries should address the shape of the whole city, rather than just one site, with the NHS hoping to look beyond Ebbsfleet at the wider health of the nation with the ideas that are submitted.

Dan Cook, chief executive of the Landscape Institute, said: “This decision should be an inspiration to other cities as it is a real opportunity to make a step-change in how we think about place creation.

“We have the opportunity to take a truly modern and multi-disciplinary approach at Ebbsfleet.”

The competition is open to UK and international entrants and there are two categories – one for students, and one for established practitioners.

Entries from professionals will be part of a two-stage process.

Further information about the competition and how to enter can be found at www.healthygardencity.co.uk

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