The new thinking is exemplified in the UK's first terror-proof tower, a 33-storey Barclays head office that has four escape staircases – twice the usual number – a concrete core that doubles as a refuge and has its air-conditioning intake out of harm's way on the roof. This is likely to be the bellwether for other landmark buildings as designers respond to the demands of occupiers, and hence developers.
Sport and leisure buildings, too, may need to be adapted. Building control officers have announced that plans will need to be in place to deal with the threat of a bioterror attack on a football stadium or other public arenas before a safety certificate is issued. Currently, stadiums are designed for rapid evacuation; in future, they may have to allow the public to be detained at the venue to make decontamination easier.
The year ahead
- Currently reading
Towers of refuge