We should be creating sustainable neighbourhoods : individually designed, affordable, low energy homes with low running costs, occupied by self-reliant people with a stake in their community.

A necessary feature of any properly sustainable community is that residents have an active role in the design and management of their homes and neighbourhoods.

Jon has recently closed his private practice, Jon Broome Architects, and now offers consultancy to local authorities, housing associations, developers, community groups and individuals in the  components necessary for a sustainable neighbourhood.

This might be in the form of a feasibility study, a site specific proposal, a demand and affordability study, a business plan, advice and support for a community organization or lectures or interactive workshops on planning a development, low energy design or in building construction.

What Does it Take to Create Sustainable Neighbourhoods? An interview with Jon


Jon’s work is based on a creative mix of innovative design and practical building experience and includes experience in the design and construction of affordable homes with particular expertise in low energy and Passivhaus design, self-build development, sustainable construction and working with residents and community groups.

Cost effective & affordable homes

Jon has over 40 years experience of incorporating ‘green’ developments into mainstream housing; homes which are economic to live in and cost effective to build, sustainable, robust and adaptable, of high quality and with a sense of place.

Jon has been at the forefront of the development of sustainable construction since the 80’s balancing performance against cost to secure value for money and robust construction.

He developed expertise in timber engineering for domestic construction to ensure an economical solution.

Community Engagement

Jon has been involved at different stages from publicity through consultation on options to organizing the design process. He is familiar with many techniques such as weekend workshops, site-visits and design days.

He has also run practical courses on planning a project and on practical building operations.

Custom and Self-Build

Jon has expertise and experience in all aspects of self-help housing; from group formation and incorporation, funding models and feasibility assessments, site and house layout, scheduling of materials, risk management, cost control, programming and site management.

He also has expertise & experience in full range of custom build options; full self-build, shell and fit-out, self-builder manages the builder, self-commissioned where self-builder commissions a designer and builder.

Energy Efficient Passivhaus design

Ultra low energy buildings which rely on a very efficient building envelope with high levels of insulation, triple glazed windows, airtight construction, eliminating thermal bridging, together with Mechanical Heat Recovery Ventilation, MVHR.

Shading is often necessary to prevent summer overheating.

Proven performance based on tested buildings is critical to ensuring high quality construction.

Consultancy   Research   Teaching

Jon’s work has included consultancy on sustainable development, community led projects, self-help housing and building construction.

He has widened his knowledge and expertise through teaching on academic housing and architecture courses, practical live projects and self-build workshops, conferences in the UK and abroad and fact finding visits to Norway, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy & Switzerland in Europe as well as New Zealand, Australia and Central America and the Caribbean.

His practice gains direction from theory which is in turn derived from practical experience.