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Old October 15th, 2007, 07:33 PM   #1
danz013
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NOTTINGHAM | Debate | High Rises In The City

Here's an interesting article from the Evening Post.

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Barcelona and Valencia are just two of the cities visited by local representatives of planning and construction on assessment missions in recent years - although little feedback appears to have filtered through.

It has been said that the emergence of both of these Spanish cities into world-class destinations has its roots in 'Design' in the broadest sense. In fact in 1999 Barcelona became the only city to receive the Royal Institute of British Architects Gold Medal, an award previously only given to individuals.

Nottingham now has its own progressive design strategy, starting with 'Design 06'. It has firm guidelines and deserves wholehearted support from developers, architects, planners and the general public who should demand an involvement in the development of their urban environment.

Nottingham is unique, with its compact, preserved historic street pattern set in a bowl with its rim stretching from the Castle around to beyond St Mary's Church. From Trent Bridge to the Shakespeare Street/Milton Street corner the ground rises 13 metres; up to the eastern end of Forest Road is an extra 34 metres. Then there is a drop of 29 metres to the Djanogly City Academy on Gregory Boulevard, which indicates Forest Road forms the centre of a skyline - where it can be seen - going from Canning Circus eastwards to the top of Mapperley Road.

This uniqueness needs great sensitivity when building plans are assessed. This applies to breadth, but particularly to height.

The 'Gateway' and 'Landmark' buildings so beloved of developers can, if poorly located, appear to cut off sections of the inner suburbs and obscure lines of sight to prominent civic buildings.

It is highly unlikely Nottingham will ever have to agonise over really tall buildings but with available building land a rare commodity, rebuilding needs to be watched. There is a tendency for upward creep but this should be limited to a predetermined height.

So it must be repeated yet again, a Tall Buildings Strategy is needed for the city's historic core and beyond.
I've been really impressed with some of the low rise developments.. so much that i'm no longer hungry for high rises in the way I was before.. however.. I would still love to see some flagship high rises over here.

I've been to Barcelona and they have some great highrises, but they are well away from the historical core of the city.

1.Do we have have space like that over here, is there an area which we could develop high rises that is away from the core?
2. Do we need high rises? If so Why?
3. Where are they suitable? Where would we like to see them?
4. What should be our cut of limit (in size). Would a 200m high rise be suitable in the city? Do we even need a cut of limit (I wouldn't mind a 600m Burj Dubai type structure down here lol)

I think we should discuss this in Length guys.... can every please add a comment or too After all.. this is skyscraper city...

And no sorry.. we're not looking for any input from Leicester... (unless you know the city well).
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Old October 15th, 2007, 08:11 PM   #2
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I'll kick things off.

I think the possibility of high rises (by this I can imagine we're talking realistically anything up to 130m or so) at the City Ground site. This would be an excellent location for these types of structure, away from Nottingham's historical centre and those all important views (which are very important, for instance, it is very important to be able to see Green's Mill from the Castle, or the Council house from the clifton flyover as another example, because these are icons of our city and these views are beautiful and should be preserved). It would also be an excellent location because any interesting skyline from the 2 or 3 buildings there could then be appreciated by people looking out from the city centre.

Apart from this loction, the lower eastside and the waterside could be possible, although I don't know how effective they would be here and could have a tendancy to 'wall' the city centre off.

However, the essential matter, one that I cannot answer, is whether market forces in Nottingham are good enough to allow the building of high rises and for developers to really make money from them.

I have one question: what is high rise? Is the Jury's Inn highrise? At 15 storey's will Meadow's Gateway be highrise?

Good idea for a thread Dan, a really interesting article. Nice to see the Local Press are also interested in what we're interested in.
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Old October 15th, 2007, 09:05 PM   #3
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I personally consider Jurys in to be somewhat of a high rise. Its high enough to affect views.

I consider a Skyscraper to be about 80m plus.

What exactly do we need to protect. I personally think the main things to protect are the Council House Dome, the Castle and the Lace Market. But I think views of the lace market are all going to be cut of fairly shortly. Southreef will block it up, the southside projects will block it up. You'll still probably be able to see it from a distance though.

Realistically, I personally think on of the best places for 20 story plus sized buildings is Huntingdon street. The go well against Victoria Centre, there are already tall buildings in the area, and you can't really block much views because there isn't much to see from that side of town anyway. But then some would say that is creating a wall against st anns? Guys.. I don't understand this wall thing... with Brook St they said it would create a wall to St Ann? How would it? I don't understand? If they built I can't see how it would have had a negative effect on the area?

Eastside City? Tall Buildings? I can't understand why they didn't want taller buildings on the site. I understand they may have wanted to protect views of specific areas but these buildings are still fairly tall, you probably won't be able to see the sights when they're built anyway?

I also think London Road is a great place for high rises. I think the Southside is a great place for really tall buildings.. but then they start talking about the wall again (as they did with meadows gateway)... plus you have to protect views of the castle.. the lace market cliffs are already blocked out from there.

I agree Oats. Forest stadium is a great site for this (Rannyflash will disagree, he dosn't support the move). The waterside will also be a good place but again.. they will start to talk about the wall again... this wall to Sneinton. I think high rises along the river is the best thing to do.. especially around the meadow lane area which is further away from Sneinton and close to the Eastside.
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Old October 15th, 2007, 09:14 PM   #4
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I think the issue of walling works two ways. One it may have a negetive psychological affect on the people living in some very poor areas of the inner city, they cannot see past the expensive large blocks and feel isolated. On the other hand, it could also act as a city wall, acting as an 'end' to the city centre, could this stunt growth? For instance, if Huntingdon street on the St. Annes side becomes lined with large blocks then will this be effectively the end of the city centre, whereas if the buildings on this road were more varied in size could the city centre not extend beyond this boundary into St. Annes in the future having a positive economic affect on the area?

I'm basing these thoughts, i must stress on my head - these are only thoughts, not anything I've read or nothing.
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Old October 15th, 2007, 09:17 PM   #5
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I also think.. yes... we need to look at Demand.. realistically.. there probably isn't that much demand for lots of high rises but I feel if things go well... and we draw some big businesses down here with the developments in the Eastside this could change.

One problem I have is with how all the councils strategies are implemented. The idea behind the southside was to create a new business quarters.. yet we have 4 developments approved in the Area, (Southreef, Pictureworks, Summer Leys, Sovereigns House) and they're all residential? The council literally begged peel holdings to add a little office space to Sovereigns house. Whats going on here?

NG2 is an example of how things could change given the right sort of accommodation for business. For years notts had no decent top class office space.. as soon as NG2 came along loads of businesses located here. NG2 is more than a half complete now and whats been built so far has all been let out.. and its only been about.. 2/3 years since they started it?

Sorry this is all a bit of a mixed up rant..we should just use this thread to discuss planning in the city as a whole.
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Old October 15th, 2007, 09:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oats View Post
I think the issue of walling works two ways. One it may have a negetive psychological affect on the people living in some very poor areas of the inner city, they cannot see past the expensive large blocks and feel isolated. On the other hand, it could also act as a city wall, acting as an 'end' to the city centre, could this stunt growth? For instance, if Huntingdon street on the St. Annes side becomes lined with large blocks then will this be effectively the end of the city centre, whereas if the buildings on this road were more varied in size could the city centre not extend beyond this boundary into St. Annes in the future having a positive economic affect on the area?

I'm basing these thoughts, i must stress on my head - these are only thoughts, not anything I've read or nothing.
I think your right oats. And I do understand that to a great extent. What It means though.. is it gives us a very tight area to mess around with.
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Old October 15th, 2007, 11:27 PM   #7
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Places I would like to see high rises would be -

Huntingdon Street / Glasshouse Street - but not in a long row so we get the wall effect blocking off St.Annes.

Waterside - a couple of towers on the riverbank would look great.

In the North of the City Centre, between Trinity Sq, Trent uni + Crowne Plaza. Theres already a few midrises in this area and Trinity Square really gives the area a big city feel.

As for heights, I would say 20-40 floors.
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Old October 15th, 2007, 11:54 PM   #8
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My preferences would be for mid to high-rises to eventually fill in the space between Huntingdon Street and Glasshouse Street (maybe with a small square/green space) and also to raise the heights of the high rise at Eastside. Other than that there could be a "Landmark" building on the Trent. What we really need though is there to be a cluster of commercial buildings but I still can't see where that definately would be as there seems to be nothing proposed at the moment.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 12:06 AM   #9
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It's quite a dialemma especially for Nottingham City Council as we need to keep strict sight lines yet find space to put them but within the city centre. The only place I can think of within the city centre is Eastside.
The other place is where Pictureworks etc are along that street yet they may block views of the council house.
Dan I agree about jur's Inn it looks alot taller than it actually is. I think the "fin" at the top helps to achieve this.
I wouldn't consider a skyscraper to be 80m. A highrise yes but not a skyscraper. It would have to be over 100m for me to consider it a skyscraper but Im just going by what people in China, USA etc consider a skyscraper as they build taller than us.
I do though that a good out of town place to build them would be along the colwick loop road near Virgin Media or at the NG2 Business park. If we did that though it would mean offices in town wouldn't be in such demand as business's would go for the higher class out of town offices.
It's a really hard to try and come to a conclusion as there are so many different variables to think about.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 02:23 AM   #10
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slender, not overbearing tower on huntingdon st or eastside wud b quality. around the station as well, but not wide tower. not keen on a cluster really, dont think it would suit notts. just the odd 1 or 2 in the right place
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Old October 16th, 2007, 02:27 AM   #11
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I think the elevated postion of Nottingham city centre would make a couple tall towers look good.
I don't think Nottingham would look good with big towers like Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool and Leeds are approving.
Nottingham has more of a historic skyline which should be kept but a small mixture of old and new with a few tall(ish) towers could look really nice.
If we had at least 2 then I'd like Victoria Flats to be refurbished as they currently play a big part in the image of Nottingham, and currently they don't give a good impression, even though I like them
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Old October 16th, 2007, 02:41 AM   #12
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I think if Victoria Centre were offices people would have a much better impression of them. With them being council flats it gives this sense of deprivation right in the city centre... anyway...

Anything on NG2 would block views to the castle, I agree stef about colwick/waterside though.

I agree with ranny too... with all this view protection it looks like sleek slender towers are the way forward....

Look at this.. where would they fit in??

image hosted on flickr


image hosted on flickr


I think Maid Marion way is a great place for them, its already got the metropolitan feel down there.. I think the council would object because of the views to our shit castle.
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Old October 16th, 2007, 03:10 AM   #13
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I think a couple of towers near the Telephone exchange would look quite good. There aren't really any buildings of historical signifance around there.
We coud have a row of buildings along that road. Demolish the building that Machine Mart currently occupy and the crappy houses in front of hthe Ice Arena and we could have quite a nice selection of buildings.
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Old October 17th, 2007, 06:31 PM   #14
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Demolish the building that Machine Mart currently occupy and the crappy houses in front of hthe Ice Arena and we could have quite a nice selection of buildings.
agreed.

i always thought viccy flats looked pretty good when you see them side on coming down huntingdon street, it looks like a proper tower, then you realise it extends for ages and the roof line goes up and down like a staircase.

still, if it was reclad i think it would be pretty smart - its a monster but its got a strangely wierd attractiveness about it. Its our monster.

i'd love to know just what the hell was going through architects minds in the late 60's and 70's?? - did they really look at broadmarsh and think, wow, thats amazing?

i mean, the twin towers were built around then, they had them, and we had.... Viccy flats!

still, at least ours are still standing!


notts kinda has two different clusters, one on maid marian way, and the other around viccy flats/huntingdon/lower parliment street. Such a shame no1brook street wasn't accepted.

that base51 site would be perfect for a tall building, if viccy flats were shadowed by a decent new scraper, it might actually make them look better..

but then, on the other hand might make them look total shite
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Old October 23rd, 2007, 01:14 PM   #15
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From EP

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Although Nottingham does not have a demand for tall buildings at the moment it should have a detailed policy of guidance about where buildings of more than ten storeys could be built in the city, should the financial equation of development prove viable. This policy was the subject of some work a few years ago but so far as I am aware it was never finalised.

To ensure that the city's skyline is protected, and to give guidance to developers, areas where such buildings would be welcome should be identified and included in the development plan documentation.

Having such guidance and a firm financial base, a developer then has to run the gauntlet of such organisations as English Heritage (EH), a guardian of the cityscape, also the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (CABE) who seek design of the highest quality. Both EH and CABE have stated that in the case of tall buildings in London they should not be dealt with by means of an outline application as this does not give sufficient information on which to give advice as to their acceptance or otherwise.

One of London's new iconic buildings is, of course, the erotic gherkin officially called 30 St Mary's Axe and recently sold for nearly £600m. Designed by Lord Foster, this 41-storey round tapered building was the second tallest structure in the City after the Nat West Tower (now named Tower 42).

Canary Wharf remains the highest building on the overall London skyline - but not for long. Two new tall buildings have been in the news recently and demonstrate the difficulties that developers face in the acquisition of a suitable site, the design of a building and obtaining final planning approval for such a development.

Land Securities, an international developer and property group, sought to erect a 39-storey building some 170 metres high at 20 Fenchurch Street. It is designed by Rafael Vinoly and nicknamed the Walkie Talkie because of its wide, concave design. Although Lord Rogers managed to persuade the City to accept the Lloyds building, it is still a battle to obtain the necessary permission for the unusual. The traditionalists seek to restrain the more modern designers from erecting buildings of contemporary concept, even though created by internationally-acclaimed architects.

The Walkie Talkie was opposed by English Heritage, who described it as the "ugliest and most oppressive building". They objected to its impact on the London skyline and the view of the Tower of London and St Paul's Cathedral, although this was approved by the City Corporation of London and supported by CABE. The application was called in by the Department of Communities and Local Government. It then went to a public local inquiry and the Planning Inspectorate rejected the arguments of English Heritage. In fact, the Inspector was of the opinion that the quality of design would make a singular contribution to London architecture. Hazel Blears, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, agreed and gave consent in July of this year.

Another building, nicknamed the Helter Skelter, now to be known as The Pinnacle, is set to be a 63-storey tower 288 metres high to be built in Bishopsgate with Arab funding. Multiplex, the Australian property company and the builder of the new Wembley Stadium, has won the contract to build what, for the time being, will be the tallest skyscraper in Britain on a fixed price of £500m.

Also coming along is the 72-storey tower 347 metres in height known as the Shard of Glass at London Bridge. It is designed by Lorenzo Piano, reputed to be costing £1bn. However, doubts exist as to the risk factor involved so we shall have to wait and see if it comes to fruition. The recent funding difficulties may well see this put on hold, as may other similar developments.

Although any tall buildings to be constructed in Nottingham will be minor compared to London, the development principles are the same and accordingly guidance to development is essential. A 54-storey building 170 metres in height is planned for Leeds Street, Liverpool which will be of mixed use and a 54-storey residential building at 171 metres tall is coming to Leeds, so all is not lost for Nottingham to eventually be the focus of such a multi-storey development in the future.
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Old October 23rd, 2007, 05:09 PM   #16
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It seems that the council are sitting back to assess how well tall buildings favour in other cities before jumping the gun and approving them.
After all, highrises may look nice but do they prove a huge sucess in our cities? That's what we'll have to wait and see.
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Old October 23rd, 2007, 08:19 PM   #17
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I would love to see 2 or 3 100-150m buildings in Nottingham, I cant see how they wouldnt prove succesful provided theyre in the right location and to decent enough design
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Old October 23rd, 2007, 08:37 PM   #18
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I totally agree. I'd like to see something like a 20 story proposed on somewhere like London Road.

I think the Meadow lane area has so much potential too however I imagine meadow lane being a low rise (below 15 storeys) development with a landmark in the centre.
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Old January 25th, 2008, 04:44 PM   #19
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From Ground Level this area just seems like a natural lace for more high rises:

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Old January 25th, 2008, 04:55 PM   #20
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Those houses need demolishing.
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