The best thing about writing a column for BD is the added incentive to stay up to date and make time to think about what’s going on. In such busy times this feels like a luxury, but thinking time is vital. The current raft of changes to housing and planning has so far provided more than enough material, and, though I’m trying not to make every piece an attack of government policy, they haven’t made that easy!
The problem is not that all the ideas are bad, but that the government hasn’t given itself nearly enough time to think them through, or to consult. Architects have a great deal to contribute to any debate on the built environment so it’s frustrating that we so rarely get any real opportunity to influence policy. At the moment it seems as though minds have been made up before a consultation is even launched, and laws made before the results are even made public. I hope the government doesn’t make that mistake if they get as far as consulting residents about estate regeneration – the subject of this month’s piece, which you can read here.