BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: UK: Wales
Front Page 
World 
UK 
England 
Northern Ireland 
Scotland 
Wales 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 


BBC Wales's Jon Gower
"The report says poor quality development and a short-term approach mean Wales is becoming a less beautiful place"
 real 28k

Friday, 16 June, 2000, 14:03 GMT 15:03 UK
Architecture in Wales criticised
New Assembly building
A decision on the new Assembly building is due
Wales risks becoming the "design orphan of the UK" unless it sets up its own organisation responsible for architecture and design, it is claimed.

Shopping centres like big boxes and the poor architecture of fast food restaurants are helping to make Wales a less beautiful place to live and work, said a report by the think-tank, the Institute of Welsh Affairs.


Richard Rogers
Richard Rogers: Bold design
The study said Wales needs a Commission for Architecture and Design, with responsibility for the subject given to a National Assembly Cabinet member.

Scotland and England already have similar bodies, and the IWA working party is concerned that Wales is being left behind.

AMs are due to make the final decision next Wednesday on whether to go ahead with the Richard Rogers Partnership's design for a new Assembly debating chamber.

The report said the promotion of architecture should be a "core responsibility" of the Assembly.

"It is also why the competition for the design of the National Assembly is so significant and why the implementation of the scheme is so crucially important for the future of the built environment throughout our country," added the report.

'A less beautiful place'

It warned that Wales is being constantly degraded by poor-quality development driven by short-term considerations.

"Wales is becoming a less beautiful place to live and work," it said.

It warned about a "lowest common denominator" approach to building, a short-term approach to costs, poor architecture in such places as fast food restaurants, "big box" shopping schemes, and public authorities allowing lower standards than the rest of Britain.

The commission is needed because "no one body exists - for the promotion of more thoughtful design - to which public authorities can turn for advice."

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
See also:

Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Wales stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Wales stories