I have only just subscribed to the LFGN – as an individual rather than a Group. This is mainly because there are no groups to defend the green spaces that particularly concern me – those that form part of housing estates and are not therefore classified formally as open spaces but provide the ‘green’ context for the lives of those living on the estates and outlook from their windows. I have lodged objections to a number of projects to build on such spaces here in Islington, including the space round Dixon Clark Court that attracted a significant group of protestors, and more recently the City of London’s York Way Estate – in both cases unbsuccessfully: the new buildings are under construction at Dixon Clark Court and consent has been granted for all the green spaces on the York Way Estate to be built on. In both cases there could have been solutions, I believe, that would have allowed for additional dwellings without loss of open space. I attach my drawings illustrating possible alternatives in each case. There is in principle literally no other way of getting more floor space onto a site without covering more of it than by going taller. That can be OK depending on the width of the spaces between the buildings.
Anyway, my point is that ‘incidental’ open spaces or green spaces, even where not designated as such, can be of immense value, and I hope your Groups take that into consideration. The programme of ‘densification’ of existing estates that is going on all over London frequently targets such spaces.
James Dunnett Architects
142 Barnsbury Road, London N1 0ER
tel +44 (0)20 7833 3451