The planning system and the open plan office

The trouble with reading the newspapers, is that you read stories that support your view of the world, but then go on to confirm that things haven’t changed or, are in fact, getting worse.

The first story that caught my attention today, is one about Bob Neill, the supposed minister for local government, laying in to the National Trust and the CPRE, for raising concerns about the proposed NPPF, accusing them of being ‘left wingers!’. Whilst I don’t agree with the extreme view of protecting the spaces between every city, town and village forever, I do agree that this government is going far too far with their plans to streamline the planning system.

Despite all the the hoo-haa, I fear that it will make little difference to a government that is far more committed to promoting the interests of developers, than promoting good quality design, let alone protecting us from urban sprawl.

The other story that caught my attention was one about open plan offices. They never seemed liked a great idea to me and now, apparently, we’re being told that they actually cause those working in them to become distracted and to work less efficiently. Pretty close to home this one, as I have experience of open plan in two different locations and they’re right – open plan offices are rubbish! Even worse, is when, as in one case I know, having decided an open plan office is okay, the management then decide to re-organise their staff in to the smallest space possible.

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