High Rise research project
A group of built environment professionals are in the process of producing a set of
essays on high rise, high density housing. The essays focus on issues relating to the
longevity of the new residential towers now making a significant change to many of
our city skylines. The essays are not about aesthetics of high rise housing but focus
on whether we are building a positive addition to our housing stock in the long term
and what steps we might take to ensure this is the case.
The steering group for the essays includes people with experience of designing,
developing and managing housing and understanding housing issues. They include
Kath Scanlon, a Distinguished Policy Fellow at the LSE; June Barnes and Dickon
Robinson, both experts on housing with long careers in the housing association
sector and three architectural practices: Allies & Morrison, Pollard Thomas Edwards
(PTE) and Levitt Bernstein.
The group’s initial focus has been on developing a case for detailed research into the
running costs of high rise housing, and the impact of these on service charges and
sinking funds for individual leaseholders. The research would include looking at how
the design and technical specification for constructing residential towers could
reduce running costs and lead to more sustainable buildings.
As part of making the case for research in this area the group broadened the scope
of its work to include a collection of themed essays on the impacts of high rise
housing, as a way to promote further discussion on this issue. The proposed essays
should be of interest to:
Those living or thinking of living in high rise housing
Landlords including the growing number of private sector landlords involved in build to rent residential towers
Government at all levels
The construction and housebuilding industry
Planning and design professionals and students
Insurers and mortgage providers
The essays will address issues around long term management and maintenance
costs, the responsibilities of leaseholders and the potential costs of living in high rise
housing. They also look at existing research on how people enjoy living in high rise
housing and the impact high rise housing has on public open space. The essays
consider construction issues and the impact of new building safety legislation on
future construction of high rise housing, their sustainability including carbon take
during construction and in use.
It is anticipated that the essays will be completed in the Autumn and will be made
available on line.