The New York Times: "A beacon of urban renewal"
|Link to China Daily (was also with The Observer!)|
"PARIS - Sheathed in new glass balconies and corrugated aluminum panels, La Tour Bois-le-Pretre rises amid decaying cement-and-brick housing blocks.
"The tower's makeover, by a team of local architects, is a case study in architectural ingenuity and civic rejuvenation. Instead of replacing the old tower, the designers saw what was worthwhile and added to it.
"Retrofitting, it's called. The practice is not common when it comes to large public housing projects. But there have been a few successes. This is one."
20 January 2012:
Evening Standard: "After the Games, all this will belong to guinea pigs"
|Link to Evening Standard|
"Forget Poundbury. A tramp round the monumental Olympic village on Monday in chill sunshine allowed time to reflect that here, covering 67 acres, stands a 3.2-million-square-foot laboratory the size of St James's Park. A place where 6000 humans will fill 2800 homes by late 2014, to begin the biggest experiment in mixed-community living ever conducted in Britain.
"... Could the East Village become a mixed-use template to build mixed communities where the property owner rents rather than sells, just as is normal with office blocks? Sceptics say not. The £825 million the taxpayer has received for 2800 homes and land is at least £200 million less than it cost to build the village and all its infrastructure.
3 October 2011:
The Guardian: "China: growing growing Guiyang - in pictures"
|Link to The Guardian|
"Every few minutes another car brakes sharply as it reaches Tangbaguan on Guiyang's new ring road. Another driver does a double-take. The dual carriageway ends abruptly in a narrow dirt track twisting downwards through heaps of rubble.
"The city is eating hungrily into the hillsides, swallowing up maize fields and rice terraces in loops of tarmac and towers of concrete and glass. But the pace of change is so rapid, the transition so sharp, that its citizens are increasingly bewildered by their surroundings. Some, like the migrant workers building the roads, are new to city life. Others no longer recognise their hometown as it sprawls across the land."
25 July 2011:
Evening Standard: "High life comes to the suburbs with Gherkin architect's 565ft 'Vertical Street''."
"Britain's tallest residential building is to be built in Croydon by the Gherkin architect who claimed he had turned his back on skyscrapers.
"The 55-storey Morello Tower, nicknamed the "Vertical Street", is designed by Ken Shuttleworth, and will have 433 flats, 10 per cent of them affordable."
20 May 2011:
"It must be a lead contender for best and most enduring work on urban planning of the last century. Howard's 'Garden Cities of Tomorrow' and Le Corbusier's 'La Ville radieuse' are period pieces. But Jacobs' masterwork still feels relevant."
12 Dec 2010:
BBC: "Implications of the Coalition's Green Deal for rented housing."
"Thirty organisations have written to ministers, urging them to introduce minimum standards of energy efficiency for any property put up for rent.
"Officials at the Department of Energy and Climate Change, frustrated by lack of progress on cutting housing carbon emissions, seem in favour, too."
6 Dec 2010:
The Guardian: "Robin Hood Needs Rescuing" [in east London]
"This is pure Hong Kong, minus the vibrant street life or dramatic topography. They show no interest in architectural quality, or in the making of home or community. They are just units, stacked. They also look like the much-reviled tower blocks of the 1960s, except that the latter had more generous landscaping, and larger rooms than are likely in the new ones."
25 Nov 2010:
The Guardian: "Thousands will suffer from the abandonment of this Pathfinder housing scheme"
20 Nov 2010:
The Guardian: "Pathfinder was slum clearances without the socialism"
"Pathfinder was New Labour at its worst, an exemplar of its authoritarianism, its arrogant assumption that the core vote can be screwed over indefinitely, and its blind faith in the market."
16 Nov 2010:
Barnet Times: "Childs Hill tower blocks set for £10m overhaul"
|Granville Road flats story, with added blue sky|
"... part of the £10 million revamp, the largest in the history of Barnet Homes." ..."Councillor Richard Cornelius, who is in charge of regeneration in Barnet, added: 'This is great news.' "
|Link to BBC web site|
"The row over housing benefit has led to warnings of 'social cleansing'. But can those on low incomes really have an entitlement to stay in expensive localities?"
29 Oct 2010:
Evening Standard: "Social Cleansing 'hysteria' " and "Barnet Victim of Cuts"
[Leader of Westminster:] "Before you get swept away by the hysteria, Westminster has almost 25,000 families in affordable housing who will not be affected at all." He said among the 5,000 people affected by the cap, “We will ensure that the most vulnerable are protected."
"Barnet council thinks we earn too much, and have told us to look for another property. There's nowhere, unless you want to settle for a diabolical property in a diabolical location."
29 Oct 2010:
The Guardian: "Housing benefit cap: councils warn of flight to suburbs"
|Link to The Guardian|
"Camden said benefit caps would "shunt the cost of health, social care and education services for vulnerable families to neighbouring boroughs – in particular Islington, Haringey, Brent, Barnet and Enfield'.
"Lynne Hillan, leader of Barnet, ... warned the cuts may see tenants 'fall into arrears and face eviction, leading to an increase in the numbers of homeless families' and that 'high-rent inner London boroughs may seek to place more families in accommodation in Barnet, placing additional pressure on public services' ."
28 Oct 2010:
The Guardian: "We need a rethink on high-density housing"
|The Guardian: Deborah Orr|
"Rent-controlled shared flats must be built, stimulating the economy, and made available to the young. Such accommodation will pay for itself, not in the short-term, like the "luxury flats" built privately for sale, but in the long-term, perhaps supported by mutualised bonds that guarantee interest after a reasonable elapse of time.
"Surely this is not beyond the bounds of our financial and social ingenuity?"
28 Oct 2010:
BBC: "No 'Kosovo-style cleansing' of poor, says Johnson"
|Link to BBC web site|
"Vince Cable accused the mayor of using 'inflammatory language' while No 10 distanced itself from the comments."
27 Oct 2010:
Independent: "London 'will be as segregated as Paris' after cuts"
|Link to The Independent|
At the weekend Simon Hughes, the Liberal Democrat deputy leader, warned ministers that three of the proposed seven changes to housing benefit set out in last week's Spending Review were the 'wrong ones', and would need to be altered, if Lib Dem MPs were to support them.
|UPDATE: Evening Standard: "PM defends housing benefit plans"|
Archive: 5 July 2009:
The Guardian: "They sold our streets and nobody noticed"