Prince Charles calls for more mid-rise London housing
Prince Charles has intervened in the London housing debate, saying high property prices in the capital risk driving talented young people away.The prince, who is well-known for his outspoken views on architecture, was speaking at the Housing London Symposium in the east end.He argued that price rises are not sustainable and quoted figures from the National Housing Federation that in six years the average price of a house in the capital will reach £650,000.House prices in London have soared in recent months, with the average price of a home reaching £458,000 in January.His comments coincide with a report launched by the Prince's Foundation for Building Community entitled Housing London: A Mid-Rise Solution.The report calls for fewer high-rise apartment blocks for the wealthy and proposes mid-rise buildings as an alternative."In order to continue to prosper, any healthy city requires a built environment that provides good quality housing, the integration of nature and green spaces at its heart, walkable, mixed-use neighbourhoods, good public transport and an identity that fosters pride and a sense of belonging," the prince said. "The most successful cities and the most popular neighbourhoods within those cities all share these qualities in abundance." He highlighted the report's conclusion, which is that mid-rise buildings of between five and eight storeys are more adaptable than high-rise properties, easier to build and repair and more ecologically sound.The prince added that many people are attracted to London by its mid-rise nature and human scale and that these strengths should be built upon.Prince Charles has long been critical of modern architecture, deploring its straight lines and functionality, and campaigning for traditional urbanism, human scale, restoration of historic buildings, and sustainable design.The village of Poundbury, in Dorset, was built according to many of Prince Charles' principles. It is a high-density urban environment that gives priority to pedestrians and features a mix of residential areas, shops and leisure facilities.The Prince's Foundation is committed to making communities more sustainable. It has been involved in projects across the UK.
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