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Tall storeys

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London supremo Ken Livingstone is as usual overegging the pudding in some of his claims about his role in relation to tall buildings in the capital. Reported remarks during his visit to Manhattan, where he has noticed that they have some rather tall skyscrapers, concern his powers to 'approve' tall building applications in his home ciy. In fact, his powers are entirely negative currently. He can block a planning application (doubtless resulting in a public inquiry), but has no power to grant a permission over the head of the local authority. It seems highly unlikely that any such power will be granted. What is true is that boroughs will have to incorporate the strategic policies on high buildings which eventually end up in the GLA's 'Spatial Development Strategy' (structure plan to you and me). Watch out for early news of this next month.

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