News: British architect Terry Farrell has been chosen to lead an independent review of the UK's architecture policy.
Culture minister Ed Vaizey has tasked Farrell, whose best-known buildings include Charing Cross Station and the MI6 building in central London, with producing a report on architecture and the built environment by the end of the year.
The review will take a broad look at the current state of architecture in the UK, considering education, cultural heritage, the economic benefits of architecture and the government's role in promoting high quality design in the built environment.
An 11-strong advisory panel selected from the fields of architecture and design – including architects Alison Brooks and Sunand Prasad as well as designer Thomas Heatherwick and writer and thinker Alain de Botton – will meet four times before Farrell completes the report.
"Many countries have an effective architecture policy and I intend to learn from what has worked elsewhere and also learn from all those involved here in architecture and the built environment," stated Farrell. "Architecture and the built environment is so important to us culturally, economically, socially and environmentally."
Others on the panel include Hank Dittmar, chief executive of The Prince's Foundation for Building Community, and Peter Bishop, formerly the Mayor of London's advisor on design.
"Good design builds communities, creates quality of life, and makes places better for people to live, work and play in," commented Vaizey. "I want to make sure we're doing all we can to recognise the importance of architecture and reap the benefits of good design and I'm delighted Sir Terry Farrell has agreed to undertake this independent review.
"I now urge all those within the architecture and built environment industry to make sure they get involved and contribute their views."
Last year the government was criticised by the industry for introducing guidelines for new school buildings that banned curved and glass walls in favour of "simple, orthogonal forms", a decision slammed by RIBA president Angela Brady as having "too much focus on short term savings."
Farrell's 442-metre Kingkey 100 skyscraper is currently the tallest building in Shenzhen and tenth tallest in the world – see all architecture by Terry Farrell.
Photograph by Farrells.