Can Better Public Housing Forestall London's "Supergentrification"?

Owen Hatherley looks to the approach to public housing pioneered in the London boroughs of Islington and Camden in the 1960's and 70's for a solution to the capital's extreme gentrification.

According to Hatherley, "the very areas of north London where supergentrification is advancing once offered alternatives to this grim cycle."

"Under the borough architect Sydney Cook, Camden in particular built possibly the finest working-class housing ever provided in British history – estates such as Highgate New TownAlexandra Road and Branch Hill, all of them low-rise, sharply (but not bleakly) modernist, based around pedestrian streets, and finished to an exceptionally high standard – one which, as the financial crisis of the 70s began to hit, eventually proved to be a little too high a standard, as costs escalated," he explains.

"What London desperately needs is a better council housing programme, not laments over the fate of its 'squeezed' middle."

Full Story: The best response to gentrification is better council housing


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