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Evening Standard: "London needs a planning revolution' says government's design czar"

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"Britain’s decades-long planning 'chaos' has left London a city of great individual buildings, such as the Gherkin and the Shard, standing in a sea of 'woeful' architecture, the Government’s design czar has said.

"Marylebone-based architect Sir Terry Farrell called for a 'revolution' in the planning system, to end the culture of Nimbyism and put the creation of well-designed places to live, work and shop at the heart of policy-making.

"Sir Terry, 75, was presenting the findings of his year-long review of architecture. He said:
"London has very, very good individual buildings, but they do not reach down to the everyday. If you dump yourself in any town centre, and look at what the end of the 20th century and start of the 21st century has brought, it is woeful."

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"Simon Jenkins: Taking action now over our skyline is too little, too late"

"Suddenly someone has noticed. The campaign for a 'London skyline commission', launched this week with 70 famous signatories, must rank as the most belated door ever to be closed behind a bolting horse. Where have Antony Gormley, Tessa Jowell, Anish Kapoor, Alan Bennett and Griff Rhys Jones been all these years?

"Whenever I have drawn attention to these developments, notably the clusters to rise behind the Shell Centre on the South Bank, at Vauxhall, Wandsworth and Euston, I have been dismissed as alarmist, fogeyish and 'anti-growth'. Given what has already been built, it can hardly be a shock that another 236 towers of 20 to 60 storeys are proposed across inner London, assembled into a new montage by New London Architecture on show later this week at the Building Centre in Store Street. They will dominate every view in the capital. No other city on earth will have so chaotic a skyline.

"The champion of these towers is the Mayor, Boris Johnson, the same as pledged before his 2008 election to stop them. He now claims to want 'tall buildings, beautifully designed in the right location and in harmony with their surroundings'. He has shown no ounce of judgment along these lines. He just wants huge buildings, apparently anywhere a developer proposes one. He has no plan for them. If Johnson ever runs for Prime Minister, the towers of London should hang around his neck like an albatross."

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