Housing developments would meet less resistance if they showed 'soul'
Housing developments would meet less resistance if the buildings showed ‘heart and soul’, says Michael Gove
- Conflict towards housing growth could be resolved with a better focus on design
- Leaders are aiming for 300,000 new homes a year by the middle of the decade
- Michael Gove claims development opposition is down to a fear of poor quality
Opposition to housing developments could be reduced if there is a greater focus on design and the ‘heart and soul’ of places, Michael Gove has suggested.
The Levelling Up Secretary hit out at ‘indifferent or insipid’ planning and suggested the potential of some public spaces was being squandered by poor design and maintenance.
His comments came in the foreword to a report by the Policy Exchange think-tank arguing for the creation of a national school of urban design and architecture.
Mr Gove said: ‘How often have we seen what would otherwise be good housing developments let down by poor landscaping or indifferent or insipid urban character?’
Michael Gove suggested the potential of some public spaces was being squandered by poor design and maintenance
He added: ‘Places must be at the heart of levelling up but if places themselves have no heart and soul, then levelling up too will falter.’
The Government is committed to a target of 300,000 new homes a year by the middle of the decade but has so far failed to meet that goal, while efforts to boost construction have encountered opposition.
Mr Gove said: ‘Much of the opposition to new housing developments is often grounded in a fear that the quality of the new buildings and places created will be deficient…
‘If an improvement in the standard of design reassures the public that this will in fact not be the case, they may be less likely to oppose it.’
But he acknowledged there was ‘no silver bullet’ to solve the housing crisis.
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