"Gentle density" is the phrase used to describe roughly three- to seven-storey development. While it is a common way of delivering housing in many European cities - think Parisian apartment buildings, or Amsterdam's town houses, and even in parts of London - it is a much less common form of development in England. That is bad news for housing supply, reduces the size of the labour pool in a given area, and increases commuting distances and carbon emissions. It is the "missing middle" of our housing stock.
But delivering that development is hard.
In this blog post for housing campaign Priced Out our managing director, Paul Smith, explain how market dynamics and planning policy interact to reduce the number of new homes that can be delivered in this way - and how design codes could offer a possible answer.