CABE/Design Council yesterday launched the new Building for Life 12. A copy can be downloaded from:
The document is intended to reflect their vision of what new housing developments should be: attractive, functional and sustainable places. It is based on the new National Planning Policy Framework and the Government’s commitment to build more homes, better homes and involve local communities in planning. We feel this is a useful checklist for those new to the design of places. It is however no guarantor of good design and must not result in a tick box approach to design assessment or negate the possibility for new and innovative ways of creating great places emerging. There must alwys be a place for the unexpected and surprising. If documents like this can be used alongside Local Design Review Panels there is a good chance that the quality of placemaking in the UK will ultimately be improved. Above all though this will continue to rely on the quality of designers rather than the way in which they are assessed.