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3 May 2012
The second Alan Cherry Award for Placemaking has been won by Graham King, the Head of Strategic Planning and Transportation at Westminster Council. The award was presented at a debate held to honour the founder of Countryside Properties, the late Alan Cherry CBE DL, who passed away in 2010. The event, which was held in conjunction with Building, was attended by an audience of prominent politicians and housing specialists including Communities Secretary, the Right Honourable Eric Pickles MP. The presentation was made by Alan Cherry’s sons, Graham and Richard Cherry, Chief Executive and Deputy Chairman respectively of Countryside Properties.
Graham King has been involved in tackling some of London’s most challenging public spaces as part of the World Squares For All study, a project led by Foster + Partners to analyse the effects of urban design strategies on the public realm. The impact of this study has led to projects including the successful transformation of Trafalgar Square, removing traffic from the north side to connect the National Gallery with the heart of the square.
King is also leading Westminster Council’s Crossrail initiative, which will improve east-west rail access into and across London. Crossrail has prompted the creation of a new public square, part of development plans to upgrade significantly public realm surrounding a new station at Tottenham Court Road. He is also currently working on the refurbishment of Victoria Transport Interchange, projects linked to Victoria circle, one of the largest regeneration initiatives in the West End.
The judging panel for this year’s Alan Cherry Award for Placemaking comprised Nick Raynsford MP, Lord Richard Rogers, David Lunts of the GLA, Keith Bradley of Feilden Clegg Bradley architects and David Lock of David Lock Associates.
Richard Cherry said: “We had a really strong list of candidates, together with a wide range of views expressed by our eminent judging panel, which reflects the significant contributions that the shortlisted candidates have all made to placemaking and design quality. Graham’s very significant role can be seen in the extraordinary number of improvements around London. He has been very influential in making London a better place.”
The Alan Cherry award for Placemaking is awarded to a public figure who has made a significant contribution to placemaking. The inaugural award was won last year by David Ubaka, the Head of Design at Transport for London. As founder of Countryside Properties, Alan Cherry led his company to create developments with significant character and sense of place. The company has become one of the UK’s leading and most respected housing and property development companies, which specialises in the creation of sustainable homes and communities and regeneration.
Alan Cherry’s vision was always to create places for people where they could enjoy a high quality of life and was realised at such projects as Greenwich Millennium Village in London, Great Notley Garden Village in Braintree and St Mary’s Island in Chatham, where his legacy is there for all to see.
He was passionate in his belief in good design, placemaking and environmental quality. He spent many hours explaining his vision to politicians and influencers to help them shape policy. Alan pioneered the integration of affordable homes within a sustainable community and believed that affordable homes should not be recognisable by their built form or appearance. Countryside Properties is continuing Alan’s vision and is building upon his legacy.
Video of the debate and award can be viewed at www.building.co.uk
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Information correct as at 22/05/2012