Vanesa Gregory chairman of Look! St Albans said “My first thoughts were to welcome the use of the word beauty and how lucky we are in St Albans. We are surrounded by a magnificent and working countryside producing our food and a delight for our leisure time. We also have our wonderful heritage within the built environment. If you look at the city from the top of Verulamium Park you can see how blessed we are with a verdant city. There is general consensus though that many new buildings in St Albans are far from enhancing and the community rightly expects better. As Sir Terry Farrell says ‘There needs ‘to be a much greater emphasis on making the ordinary better, rather than concentrating on one off, exceptional buildings.’ In my opinion the detrimental impact on people’s health and wellbeing of a poor quality environment or degradation of what we already have has been but on the back burner for too long, the cost is immeasurable. We in short should have a right to beauty wherever we live.
I am struck and delighted by the growing and compelling drive in requiring a shift from representative to a participative planning system. Basically what Look! is all about. We are stewards of our environment and what we build today will be our collectively legacy, therefore it is only right we, the community, should be integral in the planning process and not just consulted.
If it needs financial incentives to encourage developers/landowners to work with the community then I wholly welcome the idea.”
Please take the time to read the report http://www.respublica.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/Right-to-Beauty-Final-1.pdf
And more about the report here http://www.respublica.org.uk/our-work/publications/a-community-right-to-beauty-giving-communities-the-power-to-shape-enhance-and-create-beautiful-places-developments-and-spaces/