First floor plan, Markthal in Rotterdam, by MVRDV
The commitments that local authorities have signed up to in declaring climate emergencies are about to be tested. Client Earth has written to 100 planning authorities that are about to start a full local plan review. Planners will now be under considerable pressure to demonstrate action whilst also hitting housing and development targets. Staying true to the declaration made by councils will bite at many levels in the plan-making process.
The organisers of the Tour de France chose to delay the start of this year’s final stage into Paris, to ensure that the race ended shortly before sunset. So an always dramatic, climactic event was made even more theatrical. As the peloton tore nine times up and down the pavé of the Avenue des Champs-Elysées, the setting sun poured through the Arc de Triomphe and down the avenue, and the monument became a dark silhouette against a blaze the colour of the winner’s maillot jaune.
Ten years after it began, how is this most famous and controversial shared space standing the test of time?
Behaviour Change programmes have for some time been relied on to encourage people to do things that, rather obviously, they aren’t currently doing. This is often a difficult task, as people normally have reasons for behaving the way they do, behaviours that are, in essence, the result of an environment which has invited us to act in certain ways
On 1 May the UK government became the first in the world to declare a climate change emergency. This marks a pivotal moment and decisions over the coming months will indicate just how seriously the government takes this decision.
In advance of this national declaration, many local authorities and local councils have been declaring their own emergencies and committing themselves to action on climate change.
I think that it’s OK not to feel too guilty about things of a dubious nature that one did when young. We can feel an appropriate regret that one’s lack of experience led to the making of misguided decisions, but at the same time also enjoy a certain retrospective pleasure in youthful ambition and confidence, which was uninhibited by that very experience yet to come.
Llandudno – Eligible Leasehold Building Land, On Sale On the Gloddaeth Estate, Auction on 28 & 29 August, 1849
Introducing playfulness to a business oriented part of the city, the Kalvebod ‘wave’ brings this neighbourhood closer to the water
The story of the Italian Chapel in Orkney has been told many times, and I have nothing to add to it except my own response to being there. For those unfamiliar with it, it is two corrugated iron Nissen huts placed end to end, and converted into a Catholic chapel by Italian prisoners of war. They arrived in Orkney in 1942, brought there to build four barriers between the islands in order to protect British warships moored in Scapa Flow from German submarines.
San Francisco Plan, 1905, Daniel H. Burnham
As they grow, Cities extend the advantages of urban living to more and more people. The responsibility of City authorities is to nurture this growth in order that society should continue to flourish, and further develop. To that end, I would argue that some of the City’s goals are to keep people from dying, to solve inequalities, to drive shared prosperity, to help people get around, and to build safe, beautiful places as a canvas on which life can unfold.
The transformation of a prison compound into a city park with associated artist studios, a theatre and social centre open to the public.
“Children are a kind of indicator species, if we can build a successful city for children, we will have a successful city for everyone.” I have been thinking a lot recently about how we can better shape cities, to improve the way in which children can engage with them - creating streets and spaces that are safe and enjoyable.
Birmingham 1344-5, drawn by George Demidowicz
One of Europe’s largest urban regeneration projects has created new public spaces embedded between relics of the area's industrial heritage.
Fifty years ago, on 20th March 1969, the magazine New Society published a feature titled Non-Plan: an experiment in freedom, which became notorious and controversial. It derived from a conversation in a pub between the magazine’s editor Paul Barker and the geographer Peter Hall, one of his regular contributors. Discussing the current state of planning and development, Barker floated a subversive idea – could things be any worse if there were no planning at all? They might even be somewhat better.
A once divisive (and now much loved) cultural institution and public space in the heart of Paris
I referred in the last Endpiece to Jane Jacobs’ ideas about urban diversity, and I am drawn back to the subject again. Ever since reading Death and Life for the first time, in the final year of my architecture course, I have accepted as an axiom of urban design Jacobs’ argument that cities manufacture diversity, and that a big urban concentration of people is necessary in order to create a diverse and rich range of activities and facilities
Parc de la Villette, Paris, ©Bernard Tschumi Architects