Andrew Grant member of group calling for ‘quality’ design principles for national infrastructure projects

Andrew Grant, founder and director at Grant Associates, is one of ten expert members of a design group tasked by the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) to develop quality design principles for national infrastructure projects.

The UK’s first ever Design Principles for National Infrastructure, launched by the Design Group on 5 February 2020, seek to embed four key considerations – climate, people, places and value – into the planning and delivery of projects to construct and renew nationally significant infrastructure:

● Climate – Infrastructure must help set the trajectory for the UK to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 or sooner and be capable of adapting to climate change.

● People – Projects should be human scale, instinctive to use and seek opportunities to improve the quality of life for people who live and work nearby.

● Places – Schemes should provide a sense of identity for communities, supporting the natural and built environment and enriching ecosystems.

● Value – Value should be added beyond the main purpose of the infrastructure, solving problems well and achieving multiple benefits.

Design Principles for National Infrastructure

The publication of the Design Principles comes just a month before the expected publication of the government’s National Infrastructure Strategy and at the start of a decade in which a number of high-profile projects are set to be undertaken.

The Design Group, which is chaired by Stirling prize-winning architect Professor Sadie Morgan, is calling for the principles to be adopted in the government’s infrastructure strategy, alongside the National Infrastructure Assessment’s recommendations for all nationally significant projects to have design champions and review panels.

National Infrastructure Design Group

The NIC’s Design Group was established in April 2019 and comprises creative and technical design leaders, with experience spanning architecture, landscape, engineering and transport.

The members of the National Infrastructure Design Group are:

● Professor Sadie Morgan OBE (Chair) – Architectural Designer – National Infrastructure Commissioner and Founding Partner of dRMM Architects

● Isabel Dedring – Lawyer and Management Consultant – Global Transport Leader at Arup

● Anthony Dewar – Civil Engineer – Professional Head, Buildings and Architecture at Network Rail

● Clare Donnelly – Architect – Director at Fereday Pollard Architects

● Andrew Grant – Landscape Architect – Founder and Director of Grant Associates

● Professor Hanif Kara – Structural Engineer – Co-founder and Design Director of AKT II

● Madeleine Kessler – Associate – Haptic Architects

● Lucy Musgrave OBE – Urban Designer – Founding Director of Publica

● Judith Sykes – Civil Engineer – Director at Expedition Engineering

● Louise Wyman – Chartered Surveyor and Landscape Architect – Design Lead for the West Midlands Combined Authority More information about the Design Group is available here.

"It has been a privilege to be a member of the NIC Design Group, helping to ensure that the importance of landscape and ecological design is embedded within the Design Principles for National Infrastructure. We are now urging the government to adopt these design principles in its National Infrastructure Strategy. We’re also calling on anyone involved in planning, designing, constructing or maintaining national infrastructure to use these principles as a guide. Our aims are to help minimise the environmental impact of major projects, add value to our national identity and deliver a better quality of life for all.”

Andrew Grant, founder and director at Grant Associates
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About Grant Associates

Grant Associates is a pioneering international landscape architecture practice. Our work reconnects people with nature in insightful, delightful and distinctive ways whilst addressing the global challenges of urbanisation, the climate crisis and biodiversity extinction.

Our design process is underpinned by a knowledge of human behaviour, nature and ecological science combined with innovative design technology. We bring original thinking, creative collaboration and are exploring what regenerative design and the circular economy means to landscape architecture.

Our varied portfolio includes ambitious large-scale, landmark projects through to small, local ventures.