60 Seconds: Garden Bridge to Garden City




If the Garden Bridge was Bo-Jo’s vanity project, Mr Khan has what seems to be an insanity project… who knows?

After, in my view, rightly scrapping the Garden Bridge (even after tens of millions of pounds had been spent on it) Khan has thrown his support behind a campaign to turn London into the first ever National Park City.

Yes, you heard correctly – a National Park City.

The Architecture practice WATG has released a prototype for a green Fleet Street this week, just one of the areas planned to be transformed by the campaign.

The plans would see new buildings on Fleet Street made from modular living materials with native wildflower seeds, added greenery and its own irrigation reservoir.

Soon, walking through the streets of London will feel like walking through the set of ‘A Midsummer’s Night Dream.’

The campaign’s overall aim is to connect the urban parts of London to its green spaces by creating corridors across the city for native wildlife such as invertebrates, small mammals and raptors.

It all sounds quite pleasant but, having worked for Thames Water, I can tell you that the most prominent small mammals to scutter across London are rats.

expectStormsWATG states that it wants to create a city “where it’s a pleasure to swim in its rivers and green homes are affordable.”  Have you heard of Weil’s disease? It’s pretty deadly and spread by our furry friendly rats.

Not to take a glass-half-empty approach, but the GLA is struggling to provide affordable homes as it is. So is the only way to build green and affordable homes to construct thousands of little greenhouses for people to live in?

And can you imagine taking a clean, refreshing dip in the Thames which is effectively London’s sewer? Sorry, I’m busy that day.

The journey towards a National Park City will continue into 2018 and 2019. It will be interesting to see how it develops.

Oh, and if you suffer from hay fever, I suggest you start considering permanent relocation…

Have a great weekend.


To view WATG’s prototype for Fleet Street, and its ideas for a National Park City please follow this link: http://www.watg.com/london-national-park-city-green-block/

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