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Skyscrapers to get grilling from select committee

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Skyscrapers are under the spotlight again this week, with the start of a government select committee investigation into tall buildings to consider whether the government should tighten up its policy.

In its first session on Tuesday the urban affairs subcommitte heard evidence from the Corporation of London's Judith Mayhew, columnist Simon Jenkins and two 'historic' councils - Westminster and Bath and North East Somerset. In the coming four weeks it will also hear from London mayor Ken Livingstone, CABE, English Heritage, planning minister Lord Falconer, the London Forum of Amenity and Civic Societies, and a range of technical specialists.

A subcommittee spokesperson said the investigation was a 'timely' response to the Heron Tower Inquiry, the joint CABE/EH document on tall buildings, the GLA interim strategy on tall buildings and the collapse of the World Trade Center. The inquiry will examine the role, location and sustainability of skyscrapers and consider whether the mistakes of the 1960s are about to be repeated.

It will run until 12 February. A report outlining recommendations is expected by Easter.

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