Thursday 26 January 2017
16:15 - 17:15
UK canals and rivers were once the beating heart of transport and infrastructure for the entire country. Goods and people were carried the length and breadth of the land but roads and the railway eventually made this network redundant. These waterways are now having a resurgence as people have a strong desire to live and work along or even on the river. As their popularity rises, our canals and rivers are becoming the focus of debate and a hotbed of development. Phineas Harper, deputy director of the Architecture Foundation and canal boat resident, speaks to architects, developers and engineers about the future prospects for UK waterways and how we can ensure we are making the most of a complex environment.
Alex Ely, Principal, Mae
Alex Ely is founder of Mæ, an architecture and urban design studio. He has led the practice in establishing an international reputation for innovation and excellence. Alex balances working for architecture and civil society advising government and its agencies on the built environment. He has been responsible for award winning schemes from masterplans to cultural buildings, housing to health care as well as for the Mayor of London’s Housing Design Guide and numerous best practice publications for CABE. Alex is a CABE Built Environment Expert, a member of the GLA’s and LLDC’s Review Panels and the RIBA's Housing Policy Group. He is a frequent public speaker at national and international urban and design forums.
Peter Chowns, Principal Architect, Canal and River Trust
Peter Chowns is Principal Architect at the Canal & River Trust, the charity responsible for the care and maintenance of over 2000 miles of historic inland waterways and their associated buildings and structures. Peter has undertaken a variety of design and conservation roles during his 15 years’ employment with the Trust and its predecessor, British Waterways, and as a result has gained a level of expertise in the design and planning of waterside buildings and spaces, and is an advocate for the role that water can play in the successful regeneration of urban areas. An RIBA accredited conservation architect and member of the Institute of Historic Building Conservation, Peter works in planning and conserving the historic waterways environment as well as the design of new structures and advising the Trust’s joint venture development companies, Waterside Places and H2O Urban. Peter is also a member of the East Midlands Design Review Panel.
Steve Webb, Director of Webb Yates and Interrobang
Steve Webb is a director of Webb Yates Engineers and Interrobang. He is also a visiting critic and tutor at the RCA and AA. He started his career as a site engineer, working underground on tunnel and shaft construction for the jubilee line. Later switching to a roll with the then ascendant Whitby Bird and Partners he began to design. After various design positions in London he joined S Calatrava's multi disciplinary Valencia office, working on various high profile projects including the Turning Torso Tower in Malmo. Webb Yates was founded in 2005 and has grown to nearly sixty staff across three offices, most recently in Dubai, and has earned a reputation for gracious and daring structural engineering. Most recently he and Andy Yates formed Interrobang with Maria Smith as an attempt to break free from the rigid and self reinforcing divides between the building professions. The aim of this new venture is seeking to create a place were artistic engineers meet mathematical architects and revel in the beautiful rationality of structural expressionism!
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