David Grube's comments
UK housing needs to be designed by qualified architects and seen through from Inception to Completion as in Germany and Ireland. The Irish Government introduced this system over growing concerns about the number of building failures. Earlier this year Shelter carried out a study of new housing and found that 51% had serious building defects. Since the Grenfell Tower disaster, we now learn that 255 tower blocks and 2 schools have cladding that has failed fire tests. How many buildings have inadequate fire doors, means of escape, non-existent fire stopping in cavities and service ducts. UK Government need to ensure that qualified professionals are involved on every building project, to protect the British public.
Wil an architect be employed to carry out the design? Or a non-architect? Anybody is allowed to design buildings in the UK. The ARB even state that they "cannot differentiate between the work of an architect and a non-architect".
Isn't it time the UK Government regulated the unqualified?
Perhaps Norman Foster would like to champion 'Minimum Architects Fee Scales' and 'Protection of Function of Architect'.
I am currently attempting to stop Planning Officers in St.Asaph approving a residential development of 5 & 6 bedroom houses with rear garden lengths between 4.5 and 6 metres for 3 storey houses. The distance between bedroom windows down to 17.5 metres. The scheme approved at Outline Planning stage, has now been submitted for approval of Reserved Matters. The scheme backs onto an existing 1960's residential estate, why aren't the Planners protecting the existing owners properties. The scheme will result in serious loss of privacy in bedrooms and rear garden space, not to mention problems of noise and loss of sunlight.
The housing Crisis is creating the slums of the future. The Planning Officers are not enforcing Planning Policy and it appears that there is little or nothing that the UK public can do about it.
The Royal Institute of British Architects should be insisting that architects are involved in all UK building projects. The architects profession is being side stepped by developers and the public. UK Government continue to allow every man and his dog to design buildings, putting the UK public at risk.
How about, we start with the UK Government ensuring that architects are involved in all building projects. The UK architects profession is not being involved in building projects in the UK. Consequently the built environment that our public live and work in is both poorly designed, banal, poorly detailed and constructed.
The Farrell Review of Architecture and the Built Environment needed to focus on two things:-
1. Protection of Function of Architect.
2. Minimum Architects Fee Scales.
The first is required to prevent non-architects deceiving the public into thinking that they are architects. This is rife on the internet, with non-architects using the meta tag 'Architect' and appearing in Google, Yahoo and other sites under the heading 'Architect'. The public need protection.
The second is required to ensure that the architects profession receives adequate remuneration to enable UK architects to provide a professional level of service.
At present UK Government allow anybody to design buildings, no qualifications required, putting both the lives and investments of the public at risk.
The RIBA are not engaging with the UK architects profession. Only 16.7% of RIBA members voted in the recent RIBA election. In polls between 72% and 84% of UK architects want 'Protection of Function of Architect' to protect the UK public and improve the built environment. Neither of the RIBA presidential candidates had 'Protection of Function of Architect' in their manifestos. The RIBA and UK government need to take note of the views of architects.
Until the UK Government 'Protect the Function of Architect' architects will continue to be undercut on fees by the unqualified and others! The public cannot expect a professional level of service on the current levels of architects fees.
Why does UK Government allow unqualified people to design buildings putting the public at risk? UK Government need to follow Ireland and protect the British public.