If we are to make stronger communities, if we are to make cities more equitable, we need to be building homes and communities that people want to live in, not ones that they just have to accept. And this means delivering quality. We have been hearing a lot about planning reform and a renewed focus on beauty and quality of late, and in terms of urban design there is a lot to be buoyant about in the current national conversation.
But conversation has to lead to action, and action has to lead to improved quality of life for everyone in cities - else we fail. We speak to Nicholas Boys Smith on the Government’s search for quality in the new places we deliver, and what it is we need to do to get there - and move conversation into action.
Nicholas is Director of Create Streets and has written widely on planning, and the links between design and popular support for development. He is chair of the Government’s Design Body Steering Group and was co-chair of the Building Better Building Beautiful Commission, which reported in 2020 to widespread support.