The region's popular architectural service, Places Matter! Design Review, helped 54 development schemes, representing over £500m of investment in the North West, in the past year, according to its annual report.
Another programme called Places Matter! Skills delivered training to 783 built environment professionals from the public, private and community and voluntary sectors; and, Places Matter! Education engaged with more than 50 pupils between 14- and 19-years-old and provided training to 130 teachers.
Places Matter! is funded by Design Council CABE and the North West Development Agency and is the region's architectural support centre, promoting good design in the built environment. Each print copy of the Places Matter! Annual Review 2010/11 will be delivered with a free penny on the cover, urging the recipient to consider the economic value of good design.
During the year, the organisation hosted a Supermarket Forum in Manchester to discuss the design of retail outlets, and delivered a series of talks giving the inside story of headline developments in Liverpool such as the Everyman Theatre and the Museum of Liverpool. Places Matter! worked with partners including the Lake District National Park Authority and Whitehaven Harbour Commissioners Office to ensure that communities across the region have access to design skills and knowledge.
This year's activity on good design of the built environment with planned highlights for 2011/12 include a new series of training visits to exemplar sites across the country illustrating the principles of Department for Transport's Manual for Streets, and a major conference addressing the design of care homes for the elderly and infirm.
Places Matter! teamed up with advertising and design agency Kaleidoscope to publish its third Annual Review, celebrating nearly four years of campaigning to drive up the quality of design in the built environment of the North West.