Richard Rogers 'Sustainable' design for Chelsea Barracks

The above image shows my drawing of a sustainable city, left, and Richard Rogers design for the Chelsea Barracks, right. The upper part of Rogers’ drawing shows Ranelagh Gardens and the site of the Chelsea Flower Show.  I am of course mildly flattered that Richard Rogers has copied my idea but would like to point […]

The landscape of housing: Smithsons design and site planning for Robin Hood Gardens

Zaha Hadid: ‘Personally, Robin Hood Gardens is one of my favourite projects.’ Richard Rogers: ‘It has heroic scale with beautiful human proportions and has a magical quality. It practically hugs the ground, yet it has also a majestic sense of scale, reminiscent of a Nash terrace.’ Simon Smithson: ‘I believe Robin Hood Gardens to be […]

The 122 Leadenhall Cheesegrater and protecting London's skyline landscape view of St Paul's Cathedral from Fleet Street

London has had controls on tall buildings since the Great Fire of 1666 and views of St Paul’s Cathedral have been protected since Faraday House was built in 1938. A recent consequence of this protection is that No 122 Leadenhall Street, dubbed the Cheesgrater, was shaped like a wedge of cheese. The planners and the […]

The Shard architecture and skyline landscape symbolic reviews

If you build a skyscaper in London you can expect a shovel of reviews. Here is a selection of opinions about the symbolic impact of Renzo Piano’s Shard on London’s landscape. Tom Turner: If The Shard had a Christian cross on top most of the critics would change their minds Nathan Hurst: The Shard is […]

Sunlight, tall buildings and the City of London's new urban landscape architecture

I had a short walk and ride around the City of London at the weekend. It is an unusual place and, though I have never had the experience, thought about being  in a crevasse. The City has a medieval street pattern overlaid on a Roman street pattern. It can’t be changed and land values are […]

London's skyline: landscape and high buildings policy – and my apology for postmodern urban design

The words and image (from City as landscape p. 6) were published in 1996. Sadly, I forgot that most designers look at books only for their pictures. Nor did I imagine that London’s designers would see my cartoon as the latest hot trend in urban design. Tragically, as you can see from the 2013 photograph […]

Is the Millennium London Eye a Good Thing or a Bad Thing?

Following in the footsteps of Britain’s most quoted historians (W. C. Sellar and R. J. Yeatman) we should ask: is the London Eye is a Good Thing or a Bad Thing? 30m people have ridden in the Eye (@ £17.5 each =£525m) and the owners pay the South Bank Centre £2.5m/year to rent a tiny […]