The government's policy of promoting high-density urban living has been hit by research that reveals that 80% of the public would prefer not to live in apartments
The research, which was commissioned by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and carried out by Cambridge Architectural Research, looked at attitudes to residential development of 1400 people living in three towns in south-east England.

As well as not wanting to live in flats, Housing Futures: Informed Public Opinion, found the public do not want blocks of flats built in their area.

The research found that the public still aspire to live in a semi-detached or terraced house. The findings contradict the belief that detached "executive" homes are most likely to raise objections – the research showed that detached houses are the most popular form of development.

The findings give an idea of what resistance there is likely to be to different types of development

Stephen Platt, author of Housing Futures research

The findings have come to light as the government is revising PPG3, its planning policy guidance that has increased housing density. This was introduced four years ago and increased housing density from 25 units/ha to 30-50 units/ha.

PPG3 has had a dramatic impact on the type of homes built: the proportion of apartments has risen from 17% in 1999 to 42% in the first quarter of this year. Over the same period the share of detached houses has fallen from 45% to 22%.