This House Believes We Should Fortify Our Cities

Assessing risk in the public realm

This House Believes We Should Fortify Our Cities Event

Wednesday 25 June 2008

As part of the London Festival of Architecture, Building Futures hosts an evening on the nature of conflict in the urban realm. Terrorist attacks on our buildings and cities is a real threat; a recent EU Terrorism Report finds that isolated terrorist attacks have been, and will, increase in the future. How those in the built environment can or should respond to these threats is the key focus of the debate. What role can architects play in tackling these threats so that our cities do not end up as a series of barricaded streets or gated communities?

There is a real danger that designing in the defence of our towns and cities will become just another ‘bolt on’ to the many legislations and guidelines designers and architects already have to deal with in their practice. London is awash with clumsy planters, bollards and security personnel checkpoints.

If terror threats are long term we should employ some enlightened thinking as to how we design our spaces in reponse. Will this be possible or is security simply at odds with the notion of ‘public’ space? Isn’t open access to public buildings and spaces worth taking the risk? By denying public access and by disfiguring our cities we may all suffer.

Chaired by RIBA President Sunand Prasad, the event features contributions from designer and lecturer Lorraine Gamman of Central St Martin’s College, Carl Whitley Jones at the National Counter Terrorism Unit with architect Piers Gough at CZWG and John Adams Emeritus Professor of Geography at University College, London.

Start Date:

Wednesday 25 June 2008 7.00pm

End Date:

Wednesday 25 June 2008 8.30pm

Event Address:


16 Brewhouse Yard, Clerkenwell, LONDON, EC1V 4LJ, United Kingdom

Event fee:



Building Futures RIBA

For further information please contact

Macdonald & Company
ES Homes and Property
London Festival of Architecture