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Knockroon, Ayrshire, United Kingdom 
Monday 10 Jan 2011
 
Fit for a Prince 
 
 
 
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No. of Comments: 11

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07/02/11 Michael Davis, Helensburgh
Whether you like the use of historic styling or not, the Prince seems to be trying to create an ideal environment in which more people would actually quite like to live than it can accommodate. Nobody is being FORCED to live in it. There will be plenty of volunteers. So why are the fashion police out in force, slating it? What are they afraid of? They don't seem to get steamed up over the thousands of bland developments which litter Scotland. What is so scary about a very rare development which takes inspiration from past villages, even if the inspiration may be a tad more literal than some might wish? It seems to me there is room in Scotland for this kind of experiment as well as for quality contemporary-styled developments. What there should be less of is the terrifying banality of so much recent work. That is what we should be complaining about. It seems to me that it is not so much the Prince's development which is being prescriptive, as its critics. Shouldn't they get back to trying to ban Christmas, like Puritans used to do in the past? Or maybe get real and start complaining about developments which don't aim at visual quality.
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25/01/11 Jeff, Toronto
Why so angry? Many people would like this sort of community - not everyone needs modern. Don't live there if you don't lke it. Looks nicer than 99% of suburbs around here.
20/01/11 Javier, Bilbao
I wish the same concern for the small towns and the countryside would happen in Southern Europe. The Mediterranean coast, and many, thousands of towns have been devastated, due to a lack of control, and care. It is time to see nice examples like this one.
12/01/11 Joe Austin, London
The manifesto can be found here...

http://www.east-ayrshire.gov.uk/Devser/Documents/KnockroonDesignCODE.pdf

If page 12 represents the future of our high streets.. then we might as well give in now, and to think this man will be King one day...

Lordy Lordy....
12/01/11 Frank Adams, London
Yawn...
12/01/11 Darren, London
Does the Prince not realise that he is on a one man quest to rip and destroy the urban history of Britain apart? If he carries on like this then future generations will not be able to distinguish between the 17th Century and the 21st Century. The man is a complete idiot who is destroying what he claims to want to preserve.
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12/01/11 Dorin Boila, Sibiu,ROU
Today minimalist invasion seems to touch the spirit of obesity...Prince's Foundation keep the good tension by these revivalist proposals and, for sure,offers places for good living, in a real community spirit !
11/01/11 Bill, London
Ah, I know this movie. Gene Kelly was in it.

Two Americans on a hunting trip in Scotland become lost. They encounter a small village, not on the map, called Knockroon.
11/01/11 Patrick J. Quinn, FAIA, Albany, NY
the main street will end up looking like Carmel, California where Anglo-vernacular is applied right left and center....but the scale in Carmel is good at least. Unfortunately the Prince's notion of good scale seems to arise from a love of peasant cottages which have been gentrified.
Just remember: Walt Disney got there first!
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11/01/11 Peter, Dublin
I presume cars are banned, too modern for the Prince. Does the manifesto specify details for the village pump, and details for the horses stables.
 

Editorial

Prince of Wales comes under new fire as 35-page manifesto is released on traditional village design of Knockroon 


Rules and regulations are the order of the day for Prince Charles’ newest architectural quest. Knockroon in Ayrshire, Scotland is a new community development planned by The Prince’s Foundation for the Built Environment (PFBE) where each individual element has been deliberately crafted to fall in line with the Prince of Wales’ penchant for the traditional architectural form.

Supported with fluid artist’s impressions of the quintessentially British countryside village is a 35-page manifesto which dictates the ‘permitted’ design elements that will be allowed to future residents of the 770-house community. Under the headings ‘Urban Ingredients’ and ‘Architectural Ingredients’, the PFBE outlines the specific limitations within which the properties will be constructed and by which the future occupants must maintain their homes.

Such points include:
• Hedges shall be uniform colour and species
• Garden gates shall be built from painted timber, painted mild steel or wrought iron. All garden gate designs to be approved by PFBE
• Home names and numbers shall be kept within the front door ‘frame’. Letters shall be a maximum of 8cm high
• Lettering must be externally illuminated
• Maximum area for any single pane of glass shall be 2.0 sq m
• Street furniture shall be used sparingly, to avoid a ‘cluttered’ public realm
• Satellite television and associated services shall be provided via discretely designed and located communal dishes linked to underground distribution cabling

The media has continued to batter the project with taunts of ‘model village’ whilst heritage body the Scottish Civic Trust has been quoted stating: “We do...feel a contemporary interpretation of these traditional forms would be most appropriate, rather than slavishly copying traditional architecture.”

Knockroon is undoubtedly a bold and highly stylised architectural design, however concerns appear to stem from the idea that architecture should be pushing forward, not stepping back in terms of design and innovation. Coupled with the high demand for personalised building modifications – the apparent ‘need’ for homeowners to differentiate themselves from their neighbours – and the PFBE’s strict constraints on architectural design, it appears that Knockroon may be in for a few more doses of heavy criticism before planning permission is granted.

 

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Editorial

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