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JTP on RIBA panel to debate NPPF at Ecobuild 2012
Charles Campion participated in a panel assembled by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) to discuss the draft National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) at Ecobuild.
This conference session, titled 'The Future of Design and the Role of Architects as Localism Gains Teeth through the NPPF', was chaired by the RIBA Chief Executive Harry Rich.
The NPPF (currently a white paper) was published by the government as part of their proposed reforms to make the planning system 'less complex and more accessible, and to promote sustainable growth'.
The RIBA has called on architects to support localism by using their skills to help communities draw up plans for their area, and to bring vision and inspiring ideas. But if the notion of localism is in effect the political context for the National Planning Policy Framework, then there are many who are less positive about the prospects for good design and urbanism, and the ability of architects to make much of a difference. What makes most money, they contend, is what will get built.
The session was run as a high level debate. Each panel member provided a five minute introduction and then the floor was opened to the audience for examination and Q&A.
Themes discussed included:
- what will the current policy changes mean for the built environment in terms of what gets designed and built?
- in what ways might community involvement in the local area be positive?
- what would make it work in that way?
- what might be the conflicting pressures on design quality?
- might community involvement lead to worse design - a bland environment?
- is this all about pro-bono work by architects or might there be a model that encourages some payment?
- are architects really the right people to work with communities anyway?
Ecobuild is considered the market-leading event for low carbon construction and sustainable design. It attracts the most influential industry figures and organisations. Since Ecobuild's launch in 2005, it has doubled every year in size. It attracted 1,300 exhibitors and 55,000 attendees in 2011.
Please click here for further information with regard to this conference session.