Friday, February 15, 2008

Tapering Building Heights

I got into a conversation about riverfront condo development recently. My companion observed how frustrating it is that wherever there's a river or a lake in a city, there's always some super tall residential highrise right next to it, obstructing views of the water from anyone not wealthy enough to buy into the building. Fair enough, it's a bit of a problem. If you do want to buy a condo with a lake (or river) view, you can only ensure you'll keep your view if you buy immediately adjacent to the lake. If you don't want to buy a condo but are a resident and would like to be able to see the lake once in awhile, you're also out of luck.

What about requiring that buildings have decreasing height as they approach a body of water? If planning commissions made such a requirement, developers could build highrises of ever-increasing height as they moved farther away from the water. In the long run, more units could be built with water views, thus increasing property value and returns to city coffers.


Blogger lookout said...

Two thoughts:

You could ration it: a hight to area proportion. So in a given area, you could have one really tall building or several shorter ones.

Or, you could mandate buildings be put a certain distance from the water to give the public access (but it's probably too late for that in many places).

5:11 PM  

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