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London: Twentieth Century Housing Projects

Author/EditorRuimschotel, Tjerk (Author)
Publisher: DOM Publishers
ISBN: 9783869225258
Pub Date01/03/2021
BindingPaperback
Pages272
Dimensions (mm)245(h) * 135(w)
$59.32
excluding shipping
Availability: 37 In Stock
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A city famous for its rapid growth and high cost of living, London is not a place one immediately associates with pioneering housing projects. Yet the British capital has a long history of social housing and plenty of innovative residential buildings: from Henry Darbishire’s estates for the Peabody housing association to sustainable communities such as BedZED and contemporary council homes like the RIBA award-winning Dujardin Mews.

Divided by period rather than architectural style, this guide focuses on the developments in this field, beginning at the close of the nineteenth century and finishing at the present day. Twentieth-century buildings thus make up the bulk of the guide: garden suburbs, quintessentially English mock Tudor estates, and brutalist icons such as the Barbican and Robin Hood Gardens are all feature in these pages. As do lesser-known works, situated both in the heart of the metropolis and its outer suburbs.

Details of the location and nearest train station accompany the building descriptions for easy navigation, and maps give an overview for planning excursions. In addition, a comprehensive reading list provides inspiration for further investigation. Architectural Guide: London offers an alternative way to view the city’s remarkable buildings – many of which are hidden in plain sight.

A city famous for its rapid growth and high cost of living, London is not a place one immediately associates with pioneering housing projects. Yet the British capital has a long history of social housing and plenty of innovative residential buildings: from Henry Darbishire’s estates for the Peabody housing association to sustainable communities such as BedZED and contemporary council homes like the RIBA award-winning Dujardin Mews.

Divided by period rather than architectural style, this guide focuses on the developments in this field, beginning at the close of the nineteenth century and finishing at the present day. Twentieth-century buildings thus make up the bulk of the guide: garden suburbs, quintessentially English mock Tudor estates, and brutalist icons such as the Barbican and Robin Hood Gardens are all feature in these pages. As do lesser-known works, situated both in the heart of the metropolis and its outer suburbs.

Details of the location and nearest train station accompany the building descriptions for easy navigation, and maps give an overview for planning excursions. In addition, a comprehensive reading list provides inspiration for further investigation. Architectural Guide: London offers an alternative way to view the city’s remarkable buildings – many of which are hidden in plain sight.

Tjerk Ruimschotel (born 1949) is a Dutch urban designer, lecturer, and publicist. He trained at Delft University in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and until a few years ago worked for private firms and local councils. Latterly he was chief urban designer of the city of Groningen in the north of the Netherlands. Alongside this, he taught and lectured, carried out research on former Dutch colonial architecture and urbanism in Indonesia, and regularly wrote for professional magazines. He is the co-author of Atlas of Change: Rearranging the Netherlands (2001). From 2009 to 2015 he was chair of the Dutch Association of Urban Designers and Planners (BNSP).

Since he is not based in London, Tjerk Ruimschotel has no first-hand experience of living there, though he does frequently visit his daughter, her British husband and their two Anglo-Dutch sons. He never worked professionally as an architect or town planner in London or the United Kingdom and does not claim to know the building industry and policy-making around housing first-hand. As an urban designer, however, he has always had an interest in British architectural design and especially housing. From his student days onwards, he has regularly visited newly built projects such as the Alton Estates and the construction sites of Barbican and Thamesmead in the 1960s and 1970s. He continues to do this up to the present day, when a new generation of British architects are realising the importance of (social) housing for the living fabric of the city. One of his long-held beliefs is that an outsider’s perspective can (at times) be a favourable point of view.

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