Sunday 17 December 2017

Think tall to stop turning urban dreams into nightmares

Cities such as Tokyo have turned high-rise living into the height of style and sophistication
Cities such as Tokyo have turned high-rise living into the height of style and sophistication

Lorraine Courtney

The notion of cheap and compact accommodation isn't new, not to the Japanese at least. They invented 'living capsules' back in the seventies where hundreds of diminutive prefabricated pods were produced and stacked on top of each other in downtown Tokyo. Nothing comparable has ever been considered here, but that could change.

It seems like we learned nothing about planning from our boom disasters. Forget 'Country Living' magazine, with its Le Creuset cookware and fairy light-festooned lifestyle porn, Dublin apartments could soon be even smaller than they are now.

A draft development plan for 2016 to 2022 recently sent to councillors proposes reducing the minimum size for apartments by a whopping 20pc. The result will be a so-called 'studio' apartment. New proposals also would allow almost 30pc of apartments in developments to be single-bed units.

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