London For Sale

Britain is becoming increasingly privatized as urban regeneration projects put entire neighborhoods in the hands of developers. One project spans 34 of Liverpool's streets, putting public space in private control.
December 31, 2009, 2pm PST | Tim Halbur
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Anna Minton writes, "In their defence, politicians and developers point out that people like these places and flock to shop in them. But they also raise a challenge to the kind of public life, culture and democracy that has been taken for granted in British cities for the last 150 years. A host of seemingly innocuous activities – skateboarding, rollerblading, even eating in some places – are routinely banned, along with filming and, of course, taking photographs. So is begging, homelessness, selling the Big Issue, handing out political leaflets, and holding political demonstrations. It's a very different and far less democratic idea of the city and citizenship."

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Published on Tuesday, December 29, 2009 in The Guardian U.K.
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