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

25 minutes ago
A lifeboat crew from Tower station rushed to save the boy's life [Image from RNLI]

A teenage boy was saved from drowning on Sunday as a YouTube dare went horribly wrong.

Read more
The potentially lethal pills were sold as impotence, slimming and anti-smoking aids [Photograph by Met Police]

A 62-year-old man from Hackney and a 34-year-old man from Barnet have been arrested on suspicion of money laundering as police try to smash a gang that sells deadly pills across the world.

Read more
Messages being spread on social media about a terror threat on the Tube are a hoax, say police (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

Messages claiming a ‘terror threat’ was about to hit London Underground and urging people not to get the Tube this morning are a hoax, say police.

Read more

Quirky London

Quizzes

Amy Winehouse's second album became a classic

Are you an Amy Winehouse superfan?

Read more
I'm only going to say this once: Stand. On. The. Right.

James Bond is Britain’s most famous secret agent, and the capital is its most famous city, so it makes sense that 007 would live and work here when he isn’t gallivanting around the world.

Read more
Can you find the animals hiding in London station names? (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

You may not realise it but there are animals hiding in stations across London? Play our quiz and see if you can you find them:

Read more