London's Height Debate Reaches Fever Pitch

In the midst of a building boom and expecting another 1.4 million residents to live in the city by 2031, London is embroiled in a debate about how it should meet housing demands.

Richard Holledge reports on the rising stature—literally—of the London skyline: "Almost 250 buildings of 20 or more stories are being built or planned for the city and its suburbs in the next few years. About 150 of those structures are to be residential, including the Newfoundland tower in Canary Wharf that, at 58 stories, would become the second-tallest building in the city after the 72-story Shard."

The debate over the height of London's buildings has been a hot topic for years, but recent developments have exacerbated the tone of the debate. According to Holledge, "[the] long-running debate about the issue has intensified since the New London Architecture organization publicized the number of tower blocks earlier this year. And opposition has been encouraged by the Architects’ Journal and luminaries including the sculptor Antony Gormley, the author Alan Bennett, the Stirling Prize-winning architect Alison Brooks and two London mayoral hopefuls, Tessa Jowell and David Lammy, both Labour members of Parliament."

Even Prince Charles has opposed the new heights, "saying the capital’s unique character as a 'city of villages' was being threatened by 'faceless' towers and 'poorly conceived' developments.

Full Story: London Debates the Virtues of High and Low


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