Ben Darbyshire is right. I am now retired but since I started practice in 71 it's become more and more difficult to get consent. Many will argue that it should be more difficult but it's highly arguable that the schemes that do actually make it now are in fact any more worthy. Meanwhile architects have seen their role dismembered to the extent that frequently it is only to get planning consent and once that is achieved it's then cost engineered down to the bare bones making sure schemes are the same over the land with scant regard to local environmment, tradition or materials. Buildigs are deliberately pared down to short life expectancy. While the architects are used in the planning stage, their fees have been annihilated, and hordes of other consultants and experts are brought in to deal with the huge amount of additional justification material demanded by the authorities. At the end of the day planning committees will simply throw out applications even if they meet the requirements, or grant consent for their own schemes where the sole justification is financial expediency. Planning officers frequently encourage schemes which are then developed to be later thrown out after change of officer or policy, but the architect is stuck on a fixed fee and will make a huge loss. Been there and got several tee shirts. Here in France incidenatlly architects HAVE to be used on all planning applicaions for buildings of more that 150 sq metres. The profession in the UK has been supine.
Comment on: RIBA tells councillors not to talk to the press
The box tickers, clipboard merchants and "advisors" are taking the world over. Just look at some architectural debates and style wars in the past. Imagine if you tried gagging MPs- now wait a moment....
Comment on: AJ Survey: Who should be the next Labour leader?
Why make a choice between four disasters waiting to happen? Any socialist is likely to ruin the economy and therefore create less optimism. Many architects have a love affair with socialism and can't face the facts!
I must agree that the range of schemes chosen seems to confirm that architects are stuck in a place that few other people inhabit. Many of the photographs have no furniture or people. None are about providing housing for the 95% plus of the population that can't afford or aspire to such life styles. What are the costs psm of such "masterpieces"? Lastly where do you hang your paintings in most of them; can't imagine being clothed in anything other than grey or black with cropped hair.
Comment on: Fee levels stagnate despite architects' optimism
I am retired now and livingabroad and I do not want to sound gloomy but if you say that fees on a £500k refurb (which might easily be an owner occupier house in London where my firm was) wll be 8% I am afraid that compares dosastrously with the 80s and 90s where we we getting about 14%. Those sort of jobs need a high level of input and lots of site visits if they are going to be done correctly.