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Chartered Architect, RIBA Chartered Practice, ARB Registered, qualified conservation architect, ACA and ASBA member
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The biggest challenge in most market towns is their growth and the management of that growth in the restrictive context of existing town centres. Densification is a requirement, as is the requirement of a slow, human level of change and the need to reduce energy use.
My idea is to answer those requirements in one 'hit'. By opening back up the upper levels of existing buildings, including attic spaces and new storeys we can add the necessary floorspace. That can also be done by replacing all surface level car parks with multi-use buildings of 4 storeys plus a basement comprising parking, retail, workspace, residential, office and leisure spaces.
In addition the widespread use of South facing solar PV and thermal panels could make at least the additional floorspace self-sufficient. The linking of energy generation across the community, eg. local authority energy companies, is a 'no-brainer'.
More focussed town centres that contain many uses and functions, with BMSs that talk 'to each other' as an 'internet of things', has to be the way forward.
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