Get the landscaping right, then construction can follow


Too many developers think the space between buildings is little more than a decorative afterthought, says HTA’s Ben Derbyshire

“First life, then spaces, then buildings – the other way around never works.” So said Jan Gehl, the celebrated urbanist.

This requires a profound understanding of human behaviour in relation to our context, the ability to integrate a rich natural environment with hard-wearing public realm that encourages people to interact with each other, with the natural world and to stimulate interactions that sustain comfortable, convenient and desirable experience of leisure, shopping and commercial activity. Success relies on the integration of knowledge and skills about how to design the spaces between buildings.

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