An interesting article, which looks at the shape of planning and urbanism today and some of the challenges which we will face tomorrow. In sum, the following challenges were identified:
- The public will reclaim the private.
In some ways this is already happening with private shopping centres incorporating leisure activities so that people feel like they could be on the high street in public spaces.
- Our perception of ‘good or suitable’ places to live will change
Again in some ways this is already happening , Manchester and Birmingham are great examples of where city centre living has become more desirable. In addition there is still the tendency to want to live in an inner-city up and coming with all the grit and sense of chick, remember what we used to think of Brixton, Shoreditch, New Cross, Forest Hill, Peckham??? Its funny how more people are wanting to live there these days.
However in future, this maybe challenged more, with ‘private’ spaces becoming prime locations (no not squatting!) but interesting building like Pinewood Studios where proposals for re-dovelopment have been submitted. We have already seen schools, churches and hospitals as well as prisons converted in this way so why not?
High rises are controversial but in the future, there maybe little choice. Besides they are already making a come back with support for a 53 storey residential building in croydon getting approval from academics, architects and sustainable designers.In the future, we could see challenging designs which enable direct street access (without the need for a lift) to the 10th or 30th floor…
- Third world regeneration projects by urban regeneration companies like Urban Splash
With growing populations at a time when they are becoming world class economic leaders and thus attracting a new work forces, slums in Brazil and India may welcome western urban regeneration companies input and we in the west could be moving to a rejuvinated mumbai slum for work.
To some degree this is already happening, take the southbank centre, growing food in parks projects and roof top gardening (as planned by Renewal in their design for the new London Sports Village in South London). But could this become more militant, with work place garden or allotment terraces? car park conversions or more high rise roof gardens as intended by the developers Renewal?
- More interesting Architecture
Obvious? Well take a look at recent winners and runners up in the RIBA awards, I think the look of a building and its relationship to its surroundings will become a greater concern. Although this article does not mention it, I think the design of urban transport and layouts will also change in future. I did an article on some of the bicycle design competition in the USA and they certainly aim to challenge how we will use bicycles in the future.
With inner London experiencing riots, why did it all kick of in Croydon- its a suburb! Well perhaps its loosing its suburban village identity with all the big chains? or perhaps opportunities are as limited as the inner-city areas? how about transport- any issues there? have housing officers finally got it right with mixing communities? Gentrification of the inner-cities pushed those on lower incomes out? Perhaps the answer is all of the above?
But whatever the correct the answer we are seeing some of our suburbs become increasingly ‘challenged’ places.