Blog Archives

House building on the London Green Belt: would a Grand Bargain make it possible?

Should house building be allowed on London’s Green Belt? Not yet. Building on brownfield land and densification are better options. But if we look further into the future, as did an advocate of landscape architecture in 1829, building on the

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London landscape and open space planning

The LAA website provides an outline of the history of London open space and greenspace planning with free downloads of past examples. It is an important subject. But the lack of agreement the best name for this type of plan has resulted in conceptual confusion. Some of the names

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The Metropolitan Green Belt and sustainable landscape planning for a greener 21st century London

[Note: there is a longer version of this video below, with more about the history and about the environmental roles of the London Green Belt] The London Metropolitan Green Belt is under threat from house builders, who prefer building on

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The landscape architects’ role in managing London’s flood problem

The Mayor of London launched a consultation on Sustainable Urban Drainage in 2015. Robert Holden and Tom Turner discuss the issues, in the above video, and make the following points: London needs an integrated water plan for surface water drainage,

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Green belts: the history & landscape architecture of a key planning idea

John Claudius Loudon’s 1829 proposal for ‘zones of country’, ‘breathing zones’ or ‘breathing places’ round London is the probable origin of Ebenezer Howard’s 1898 proposal for what became the London Metropolitan Green Belt, though there are older sources for the

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Westminster Bridge urban landscape design and pedestrianisation – TfL consult on cycle lanes

TfL are consulting on the creation of superhighway-style cycle lanes on Westminster Bridge, as discussed in the video, below, by Robert Holden and Tom Turner. The consultation period ends on 22.12.2015. Our conclusions are: TfL and Lambeth Council should consider

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Crossrail Place Roof Garden London by Gillespies

The Crossrail station at Canary Wharf is topped by a public roof garden. The design for the garden evokes a ship laden with unusual and exotic specimens from around the globe – a nod to its maritime past. Under a

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More London urban design by Townshend landscape architects

More London is an office development on the south bank of the River Thames between London Bridge and Tower Bridge. The brief given to the landscape architects, in 1998, was to create a unique place with both an individual character

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‘Should Oxford Street be pedestrianised?’ Landscape architects say ‘yes’

Landscape architects Tom Turner and Robert Holden debate whether Oxford Street should be pedestrianised as a shared street. ‘Yes’ is their answer. Oxford Street is an environmental disaster zone which claims to be ‘Europe’s premier shopping street’. Oxford Street has

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Piano’s Paddington Skyscraper

Renzo Piano has designed a Skyscraper for Paddington. Simon Jenkins calls it the Paddington Pole and comments that ‘Unlike the Shard, the Pole appears to have all the subtlety of a cigarette.’ I see it as the Paddington Pepperpot and

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