Ben van Bruggen
It was fascinating to contribute to this process and observe three days of presentations with the competition design panel. All the proposals challenge our Auckland Design Office to consider the future of Auckland’s skyline, what it means to be a capital of the Pacific and what our public realm laneways could become.
Traffic has decreased by about 10% since the introduction of the charge but speeds are now below 8mph. One result has been greater levels of pollution. However, the most significant impact is the dramatic fall in the accidents and fatalities on the roads since the introduction of the charge – in both the charge zone and adjacent areas, largely due to the slower vehicle speeds.
I trust that you found Mrs F's mother in good spirits if a little older by the time you got there.
On what basis is English Heritage making the decision? By that I don’t mean what legal or planning basis but rather what information. Our system of visual assessment lends itself well to opinion presented as evidence. This isn’t a comment on the architecture or the developer or even the visuals artists but all images like this are the result of creative decisions and are at best a manipulation of reality. EH or Lambeth can’t possibly understand the impact of the proposal on the quality of the historic environment on the basis of staring at these two dimensional images. Ultimately, it is the temperament of the creative team, the relationship of the architects to the visualizers and the amount of money the client is willing to spend that will determine the ‘reality’ of the outcome. I hope that EH and Lambeth seek an independent review of the verified images before any planning decision is made and that way we really can say what you see is what you will get.