At WinACC's first General Meeting of members on Saturday 1 August. the resolution was carried with no dissenting voices that ‘If the Barton Farm development goes ahead, WinACC should campaign for the entire development to…get as close to zero CO2 as possible’ and that it should ‘prioritise people over vehicles’.  

The motion was proposed by Winchester architect Rupert Cook who drew members’ attention to the Passive House standard which has been developed in European countries.  Using solar power and superinsulation, houses built to Passive House standards require 90% less energy for space heating than is required for a standard new building.    The motion argued that, if it is to be built, the developers and planners of Barton Farm should follow the example of the Vauban development in Freiburg, which is built to Passive House standards and is largely ‘car-free’.  James Martin-Jones, who seconded the WinACC resolution, reminded the meeting that the development in Freiburg is liked by people who live in it.

In Vauban, a suburban development on the outskirts of Freiburg, near the German and Swiss borders, 70 per cent of households do not own a car and 57 per cent sold a car to move there.  Vauban has its own car-sharing club, so that residents can rent a car for weekend trips, but generally the public transport and cycling are so safe and reliable that they choose a car-free life style  Robert Hutchison, Chairman of WinACC, says ‘From everything that I have read about it, Vauban provides an excellent model for Barton Farm to follow.  It is a development of a similar size, and pioneering in its recognition that an increasing number of families and households want to live without a car, provided that there is good public transport and excellent facilities for walking and cycling.  It would be a tragedy if the Barton Farm development was a missed opportunity.  The people of Winchester should expect nothing less than the highest possible standards of design and sustainability’.