Debate on future vision for St Helier hits the right balanced tone

Construction law specialist Claire Smith, who introduced St Helier Constable Simon Crowcroft’s speech on the vision for the future of St Helier, said that the speech fairly reflected the need to build taller buildings to achieve the increased public open space that should now be a priority for policy-makers.

The speech was one of the highlights of Jersey Architecture 2017 – a 24-hour event focussing on architecture and development in the Island.

Smith, a senior associate in Ogier’s property law team, said: “Fundamentally, developers want to build the residential and commercial buildings that the public want to live and work in, but the projects have to make commercial sense to get off the ground.

“From the point of view of the industry, the Connetable struck a balanced and pragmatic view – if building footprints are going to be reduced to deliver a more attractive public realm, then some reasonable relaxation in respect of height will logically have to follow, or developers will struggle to make the financial case for construction projects.”

Ogier’s property team was placed in a league of its own by leading legal commentator Chambers and Partners in its 2017 guide as the only one to merit a top-tier rank. The market-leading property team regularly advises on commercial and residential development, financing and transactional work with a client roster that includes private individuals and corporations.