Demolition or Refurbishment of Social Housing



We developed a series of technical and non-technical resources for understanding the issues around demolition or refurbishment of social housing in London. To view the written outputs, click on the icons below under ‘Resources’. Scroll down further to watch short films summarising key points.

For more information or to provide feedback on the project, please contact us.


The demolition of homes is amongst the most contentious issues in urban regeneration. Just Space and the London Tenants Federation commissioned the Engineering Exchange and UCL Urban Laboratory to review the technical evidence for demolition or refurbishment of social housing in London.

The review found that housing refurbishment is often better than demolition and reconstruction when considering social, environmental and energy factors. Demolition and refurbishment decisions for buildings are often taken by professional experts and developers, without adequate engagement with local residents and communities. Good decision making in regeneration requires thoughtful assessment of financial and technical information, within a context of meaningful engagement with residents and communities.


Key points – a resident’s perspective:

Key points – an academic perspective:

Health and Wellbeing:

Embodied Carbon:

Lifespans and Decisions:


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