Mayor urged to demolish London tower blocks

11:13 24 January 2013

The report claims multi-storey flats attract higher crime rates and social breakdown. File picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

The report claims multi-storey flats attract higher crime rates and social breakdown. File picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

High rise tower blocks should be knocked down and replaced by flats and terraced housing to help reduce social unrest in London, a think-tank has argued.

The Policy Exchange believes an extra 260,000 new homes could be built in the capital in the next seven years if their recommendations were taken on board.

The right-leaning group’s Create Streets report cites “multiple studies” and evidence which shows that people living in high rise blocks are more vulnerable to crime and poor health and education outcomes.

“These multi-storey estates are harmful and occasionally lethal,” the report, co-authored by Nicholas BoysSmith and Alex Morton, stated. “Only last week an inquest opened into the 2009 Camberwell Tower block fire in London which killed six people.

“Studies have shown that residents of high-rise blocks or large estates suffer from more stress, mental health difficulties, neurosis and marriage breakdowns.

“Children living in high rise accommodation suffer from increased hyperactivity, hostility and juvenile delinquency even when you adjust for social economic status.”

In London, almost one third of all families with children living in social housing live on the second floor of a building or above, the report claimed.

“London has started development on just 16,000 homes a year, well below even the minimum number of 32,000 homes a year the Mayor’s London Plan states is needed just to keep up with household growth,” the report added.

Latest Stories

09:14
The 174 bus collided with a house in Harold Hill (Picture by Dani Walsh)

A double-decker bus rolled backwards down a hill and crashed into a house in east London yesterday afternoon.

Read more
The cyclist was killed by a lorry in Richmond (Photo by Bethany Clarke/Getty Images)

A cyclist has died this afternoon from injuries sustained in a crash with a bin lorry in Richmond during rush-hour yesterday morning.

Read more
Chrissie Wellington tweeted about the theft

A brazen cycle thief was caught on camera breaking into an office in south London and stealing Ironman world champion Chrissie Wellington’s prized triathlon bike.

Read more

Quirky London

Quizzes

How much do you really know about QPR legends like Les Ferdinand? Picture: Neal Simpson/EMPICS Sport

Test your knowledge of QPR’s greatest players with our fantastic legends quiz.

Read more
How much do you know about films in London? (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)

Do you know your Lock Stock from your Long Good Friday, Sliding Doors from Shakespeare in Love?

Read more
How much about this great city do you really know? Take our true Londoner quiz and find out (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)

Do you know your apples from your pears? Take our Cockney quiz and see how much of a Londoner you really are.

Read more
Guess the manager quiz. Here's a hint, it's not these four.

The managerial merry-go-round spins quickly these days so do you think you’ve got the knowledge to recognise the faces of all these football bosses?

Read more
A normal day at London Liverpool Street station

This quiz is for people who think they know the Tube and rail inside out.

Read more