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Election 2005 - the aftermath

Following Labour's historic third-term election victory last week, the AJ quizzed some of architecture's leading lights to get their opinions on the impact of Tony Blair's win

'Archaos members have been generally underwhelmed by the election this time around.

It was disappointing that architecture, planning and the built environment didn't feature more in the election. It was particularly worrying that so little debate was had on environmental issues and, in fact, that the Labour manifesto has next-to-nothing to say on this issue. However, the AJ interview with the shadow planning minister was enough to convince anyone that Keith Hill is comparatively a gift.' Alex Maclaren of student group Archaos

'Planning legislation under Labour has promised a lot, but has failed in the delivery - how will they unblock the planning process in this third term? And, in view of the number of houses being built, is the government doing enough to promote design quality?' Laurie Chetwood of Chetwood Associates

'I am delighted with the Labour win. This is good news for us as we specialise in urban regeneration and housing - areas where we know the Labour government will continue to focus a great deal of interest. But it remains to be seen whether the ODPM will survive in Blair's new government.' John Assael, director of Assael Architecture

'A great result. The Labour manifesto was the most 'architecture friendly' of the three main parties, and their reduced majority means they will have to listen more to the views of the public as well as their own back-benchers.' David Stanford, managing director at Reid Architecture's London office 'I marched against the war in Iraq, something I have never done before, and I was gutted when Parliament was duped into wasting lives and money to protect US oil interests. I think that party politics seem increasingly irrelevant, with all the major parties being so close together in their manifestos (how could you agree with everything in any of them? ), but voting, and voting in person, is very important to me. Come to think of it, the best thing politicians could do for us is to take a year off and stop making new laws for a while. At least we would save a few trees.' Terry Brown, partner, GMW Architects

'In Scotland, many of the election issues, such as health, education, transport, and housing, were largely irrelevant, as these matters are devolved to the Scottish Parliament. The protest vote against Labour, and the failure of the Conservatives to make any progress, sets the scene for an interesting two years leading up to the next Scottish Parliament election in 2007.' Andrew Pinkerton, director of Scottish practice Keppie Design

'It could have been a worse result. I'm going to be charging back in there with the new ministers and writing to every single MP with a fresh copy of the manifesto, asking them all to be intolerant of spending public money on anything other than good design.In the inimitable words of Mrs Thatcher, we can do business.' George Ferguson, president of the RIBA

'The level of investment in the built environment under a Labour government has been in marked contrast to the Conservatives of a decade ago. A Labour victory will continue to help feed the pipeline of work, even if the profession is not always happy about the way that pipeline works. One hopes that the government will press on urgently with Crossrail and other major infrastructure projects, which are essential to service the new developments taking place in the capital.' Peter Murray, curator of New London Architecture and chairman of Wordsearch

'As Labour takes the built environment more seriously than other parties, it's a good result. But this time they have to deliver on their promises on architecture and design.' Rowan Moore, director of The Architecture Foundation

'Our practice specialises in designing healthcare and education facilities, as well as policy research and masterplanning of urban regeneration schemes, all of which Labour has supported quite heavily in the past. Also, with our emerging strength as leaders in sustainable planning and ecologically responsive design, we expect this to be very high on the government's agenda, which will not only be good for us, but also for society.' Richard Nelson, business development director, Llewelyn Davies

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