1st Edition

Planning, Politics and City-Making A Case Study of King's Cross

By Peter Bishop, Lesley Williams Copyright 2019
    256 Pages
    by RIBA Publishing

    Whilst there is extensive literature analysing the design and function of new buildings and places, the actual process through which development proposals are actually fashioned – through complex negotiation and deal making, involving many different stakeholders with different agendas – is largely undocumented. Conventional planning theory tends to assume a logical, rational and linear decision-making process, which bears little relationship to reality. This book aims to shed some light on that reality. The King’s Cross scheme is one of the largest and most complex developments taking place in Britain today. The planning negotiations, which took six years, were probably some of the most exhaustive debates around a development ever. A report of over 600 pages of technical information was eventually presented to the committee, and after two evenings and ten hours of presentations and debate, the committee approved the scheme by just two votes.

    1. Introduction  2. The Planning and Development Process  3. History and Development Context  4. Establishing the Framework for Negotiations  5. The Masterplan  6. The Middle Game  7. Community Consultation  8. The Decision  9. Building King's Cross Central  10. Conclusions


    Peter Bishop is a town planner, Professor of Urban Design at the Bartlett School of Architecture, visiting professor at Nottingham Trent and a Director at architects Allies and Morrison. Previous posts include Deputy CE at the London Development Agency and Director of Environment at Camden where he led the negotiations on the King’s Cross.

    Lesley Williams is an environmental scientist, town planner and writer specialising in design and facilitation of stakeholder involvement processes, consensus building and partnership development. She has carried out work for Development Trust Association, the Environment Agency, UK Police Authorities, L.B. Tower Hamlets, CABE and the Civic Trust Regeneration Unit.