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How do we make places where people want to live, work, play and learn. A podcast on cities for makers of place

How do we make places where people want to live, work, play and learn. A podcast on cities for makers of place
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How do we make places where people want to live, work, play and learn. A podcast on cities for makers of place




Designing for the blind: RNIB and Countryside Properties

Without the Royal National Institute of Blind People, there’s no chance Countryside would have gained planning for private housing on the green belt; and without Countryside, RNIB would not have been able to replace their dated 1960s facility on site. So began an innovative partnership that sees the design and development of an inclusive enclave from what Cocks descried as “a cold and empty place that felt more like an institution than a community.”


Extinction Rebellion: "Everything has been very polite up until now"

Landscape architect Will Sandy and Building Centre creative director Vanessa Norwood discuss the impact Extinction Rebellion’s actions are having on the built environment and how we perceive the future of the city. Sandy is creative director at The Edible Bus Stop, a biodiverse design studio whose temporary and permanent spaces can be seen all over London. Norwood is creative director of the Building Centre and was previously Head of Exhibitions at the Architectural Association.


"The Bee Network is unlocking cycling and walking in Manchester"

The Bee Network creates 75 miles of Dutch-style segregated cycle lanes and safe pedestrian crossings, and 1000 miles of walking and cycling routes in Manchester and will be accessible to 92% of the Greater Manchester population, the largest network of its kind in the UK. Nitasha Kapoor met with street design engineer Brian Deegan on designing cycling infrastructure for the northwest.


“Drill music isn’t going to kill you”: Why we need music venues

What does a city need to foster a successful music industry? This is something Shain Shapiro knows better than anyone. His consultancy advises city governments and property developers on the cultural economy. But despite the growing profile of Sound Diplomacy’s work, however, Shapiro says “the debate is broken.” For policy to be successful, Shapiro says, officers must be agnostic to musical style. One person’s noise is another’s music, Shapiro adds, with a reminder that the two most popular...


Jan Gehl: "First life, then spaces, then buildings"

Bonus episode: In this talk at the Roca London Gallery, Danish architect Jan Gehl discusses his extensive work creating cities for people worldwide, using psychology and architecture to support a human-centred approach to urban planning and design.


Jane Riddiford: Community engagement, the real thing

Global Generation’s Skip Garden in King’s Cross is a much-loved organic core for its development. Now co-founder Jane Riddiford has created the Paper Garden, a new incarnation at Canada Water, with the ambition of realising the power of community.


Sarah Gaventa: "London is only here because of the Thames"

Director of the Illuminated River Project, Sarah Gaventa discusses Leo Villareal’s public art project in London that will accentuate 15 bridges over the Thames. The ambitious £45m project begins with the illumination of London Bridge, Cannon Street, Southwark and Millennium Bridge, with all bridges completed by 2022.


Roundtable: What are the barriers to child-friendly cities?

After a call-out on Twitter, professionals from across the UK joined a conversation about child-friendly cities in the UK that developed into a meet-up at a curry house near the train station in Leeds, organised by Emma Bearman of Playful Anywhere CIC and recorded by The Developer. Here, practitioners shared their ambitions and the challenges they are facing in pursuing a child-friendly agenda. This conversation serves as a powerful sign of this growing movement across the UK to create more...


Paul Monaghan: "It's about improving the everyday architecture of Liverpool"

Paul Monaghan is founding partner of one of the most successful architecture practices in the UK, Allford Hall Monaghan Morris. Now, he's got a new role, as design champion for his hometown of Liverpool, with a mandate to get design quality on the agenda. We talk about urban redevelopment in the UK: the good, the bad and the uniquely Scouse.


Brick by Brick: "We're turning a little into a lot"

With a need for new homes and under pressure from council cuts, Croydon Council established Brick by Brick in 2016, a limited company that would tackle the housing crisis across the borough. The ambition was to build 2000 new homes on 50 sites. We take a walk with Chloe Phelps, Head of Design for Brick by Brick to visit some of the first fruits of this ambitious programme


Beyond shopping: What's the future of the High Street?

What is the social value of the high street? We meet Holly Lewis, co-founder of architecture and urbanism practice We Made That, for a walk down the high street and a chat about ‘High Streets for All’, a research study commissioned by the Greater London Authority to unpick the contribution of London's high streets to the city. Unexpected results include that half of people on the high streets are not there to shop.


"Wait, could we do a mixed-use thing at Canada Water?"

Roger Madelin, Head of Canada Water for British Land and maverick of place takes us on a whirlwind tour of his new major project in this double episode. We travel up a tower and across the site, followed by Madelin's stream-of-consciousness rap in a noisy cafe where he talks risk, planning policy, the art of stuff, the future of Southwark, Section 106, the axing of SureStart and why we should walk like Italians do


Bonus walking tour: Wembley's Rental Rebellion

In part two of this interview, we take a deeper dive into Wembley Park. From underground vacuums for garbage, to dog parks and community events, Angus Dodd, CEO of developer Quintain, takes us on this walking tour around the unfinished development


The new Wembley Park: Building a community for renters

There used to be nothing around Wembley stadium, but Quintain has been changing that. Wembley Park is their project to transform 85 acres of city. Quintain chief executive Angus Dodd shows us around and explains why they switched to private rental in 2015 and how the alternative would have been disastrous


How they put Here East on the map

After the London Olympics were over, two giant sheds were left on the Olympic Park - the former Press and Broadcast Centres. There was scepticism when it was announced that Delancey was going to make these redundant hangars into a technology innovation centre. For one, it's not the easiest place to reach – but now when you arrive, you’ll find a campus with character and a fascinating mix of tenants, from upstart start-ups to Ford, from UCL’s robotics lab to fashion e-and soon, an outpost of...


What can we learn from the rapid evolution of urban animals?

Menno Schilthuizen, evolutionary biologist, describes why pigeons are changing the colour of their feathers, why blackbirds sing earlier in the morning, and how supporting greater biodiversity by design would support the human animal, too


"It's not going to be a Bilbao iconic thing"

Karen Livingstone, Director of Masterplan and Estate for the Science Museum Group, talks about the vision for York 2025, a new historic quarter for Manchester and the trouble with London’s Exhibition Road in this discussion about the role of the museum in the city


BONUS EPISODE: The Urbanisation Forum at Google HQ

A special recording of the Urbanisation forum on Connectivity, hosted by the Swedish Chamber of Commerce at Google's UK headquarters in King's Cross. Speakers include Simon Dixon, Deloitte's Global Transportation Leader; Jon Simpson, Google's Smart Building Technical Lead; Max Ryerson, CEO & Chief Digital Strategist at StratForce; Geoffrey Palmer, Sweco's Director of Buildings; Transport for London's Iain Macbeth, Head of Foresight and Linda Thiel, Director of the London Studio of White...


Estate regeneration the Scandi way

When Barking and Dagenham’s development arm, BeFirst, appointed White Arkitekter to redesign the Gascoigne East estate, the practice’s Swedish roots were a contributing factor. In this podcast, London studio director Linda Thiel describes how they are taking a Scandinavian walkable and open approach to the regeneration of an East London estate.


Buildings must speak to each other

“Cities are defined by their buildings,” says Simon Silver, Director at Derwent London. “It worries me as a Londoner when I see buildings that are soul-less. How did they win planning? How did they get through?” While they are not known for placemaking per se, wherever you stand in Fitzrovia, you are spitting distance from a Derwent London building. With a portfolio of 5.5m square feet, 98 per cent of which is in Central London, Silver has a strong sense of how buildings contribute to the...