Robin Hood Gardens is an ugly block of flats and it is an uncomfortable place to live. It is in the East End of London, not too far from where I spent eleven early years of my life in a council house built to the same kind of specifications and bearing the same kind of grimness as Robin Hood Gardens.
Richard Rogers is a famous architect who seems to have persuaded to government to engage him in various projects (such as the ugly millennium dome). Mr Rogers thinks that Robin Hood Gardens is a building that ought to be preserved for architectural reasons. He does not have to live there.
Most days on my way to work I walk past number 13 Mansfield Street. It is a splendid Georgian terraced house on many floors with beautiful external appearance and lovely internal living rooms. It was the home of two very famous architects -John Loughborough Pearson and Edwin Landseer Lutyens. It is visually quite unlike Robin Hood Gardens and offers much more luxurious and sensible accommodation.
Architects are important people; they create great environments for people or ugly, shabby environments for people. These environments can make those who live in them happy or sad, content or discontent.
A good architect is a good arbiter of excellence in buildings. If Mr Rogers thinks Robin Hood Gardens is a good example of architecture that ought to be preserved then I have another reason to doubt his taste and judgment.
I note that Mr Rogers does not live or work in Robin Hood Gardens.
Filed under: climate change | Tagged: 13 Mansfield Street, architecture, East End of London, Edwin Landseer Lutyens, John Loughborough Pearson, John Loughborough Pearson and Edwin Landseer Lutyens, Lord Rogers, Richard Rogers, Robin Hood Gardens |