Skyline Campaign

MQT on 2014-10-22
Session date: 
October 22, 2014
Question By: 
Navin Shah
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


How can you justify your negative stance on the recommednations made by (London) Skyline Campaign to improve the quality of high-rise buildings in London?



Answer for Skyline Campaign

Answer for Skyline Campaign

Answered By: 
The Mayor

I believe I have given a pragmatic response. 


The London Plan has never contained a presumption against tall buildings. It has always made clear that tall buildings must be well designed and in the right place.  This approach has received the support of every Secretary of State and the Plan has been used as an exemplar in other cities around the world. The Plan has delivered unprecedented growth in London as well as improvement to the quality of its environment. Some of this success is down to the Plan led approach to tall buildings that helps to give this city its energy and dynamism. It would be a mistake to have a presumption against tall building development and this could not be justified.


A wholesale review of all extant tall building policies would not be an effective use of often scarce resources, as the majority of London boroughs have up to date plans which are also under regular review.


We have already procured a 3d model for large parts of London which has been used to assess tall building policy in key Opportunity Areas. This has provided a useful tool - I support the idea of providing London wide coverage and have shared the model with London Boroughs.


Control of London’s skyline must be democratically mandated rather than being subject to a panel of ‘experts’. Such a panel would represent narrow interests which might be conflicted, and would undermine local democratic process.