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The only way is up for high density

9th November 2005

The SCS annual conference in Dublin was told that it is time to look in new directions to find housing solutions for Dublin, CON POWER reports

DUBLIN cannot be allowed to continue to sprawl and colonise adjoining counties, the President of the Society of Chartered Surveyors Derry Scully told the SCS annual conference in Dublin. Instead we must turn to high densities through well-designed high rise developments.

“We must look at increasing development densities generally and look to high rise development in appropriate locations as one means of achieving higher densities,” Mr Scully said.

“Dublin suffers from serious problems of congestion with associated costs arising from delays in people getting to work and goods getting to market – these problems are set to escalate as the population increases.”

Referring to the CSO’s projections of the population of the Greater Dublin area growing to almost 2.1 million – as much as 41% of Ireland’s total – by the year 2021 he declared that “clearly, the city and its surrounding areas must plan to accommodate such an increase”.

‘Dublin the Next Phase – High Density, High Risk, High Rise?’ was the title of this year’s conference.

“In following a path of higher density development we must ensure that we provide attractive, well-designed and well-maintained developments that attract a mix of occupiers that fit in with existing communities”.

“It is essential to look for ‘Density by Design’, rather than ‘Density for Density’s Sake'”, he told his audience of over 250 delegates at the conference.

He added that “we cannot have landmark towers everywhere, but sited appropriately they can enhance the urban landscapes and skyline”.

The SCS Annual Conference was officially opened by the Minister for the Environment, Heritage & Local Government Mr Roche. The Minister spoke of the importance of Dublin and the Greater Dublin Area as a driver of national development and its pivotal role in the ongoing implementation of the National Spatial Strategy (NSS).

The Minister said: “We must support and enhance the competitiveness of the Greater Dublin Area so that it continues to perform at national and international levels as a driver of national development.” The SCS conference dealt with future options, the sort of high risks there may be in high rise and high density development, how city housing and transport will be affected in an already congested city, and how high rise design has developed.

Speakers included Dublin City Manager John Fitzgerald who spoke on ‘New Homes for a Growing Dublin – Problems and Potentials’ and chartered surveyor Dr. Brendan Williams, lecturer at the Department of Planning & Environmental Economics, UCD, who dealt with ‘The Emerging Greater Dublin Area: Urban Development Trends & Implications’.

From the UK were architect John Worthington, co-founder of the international workplace design consultancy DEGW and chairman of Dublin Corporation’s Architectural Advisory Panel, London architect Sir Richard MacCormac, chairman of MacCormac Jamieson Prichard and Liam Bailey, head of residential research at Knight Frank.

Source: Con Power
Irish Independent

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