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Dichtestress vs. Dichtelust – reflections on perceived urban density

by Fanny Blanc (23 May 2019) On 7 May 2019, Fanny Blanc presented our aspects of our work to the ‘Perceived Urban Density’ workshop at ETH Zurich, organised by Dr. Beatrix Emo. Housing is an emotional subject. People identify with the place where they live and build their lives. When it comes to a topic so close to the heart, the difference between reality and perception is often blurred.  The focus of… Read More

The Need to Get Debate about the Mayor’s London Plan into the Public Arena

by Ian Gordon – (6th May 2019) The role of the Mayor of London under the devolved system established in 2000 is an essentially strategic one, with its central expression in a London Plan. Sadiq Khan’s ‘new’ version of this plan (the NLP, published for consultation in December 2017), with a distinctive focus on ‘good growth’, has been working its way through an extended ‘Examination in Public’ (EiP) since the New Year,… Read More

Examination in Public: Roundtable 5, Thursday April 11th

Taking stock Aim of the roundtable The fifth roundtable was held at the point when the Examination in Public of the Mayor’s (draft) New London Plan had been sitting for three months and had dealt with 60 of its 94 Matters. At this point there was a month-long break before starting again (on waste management) and moving on towards completion of the hearings on 22nd May. It therefore seemed a sensible time… Read More

What type of growth should we be aiming for?

By Meera Kumar and Zach Jenson In a city like London, it can be easy to take growth for granted at times. Since the early 1990s, the population and economy of the city have grown substantially, putting pressure on housing, transport, and a number of other institutions in the process. While much of this is attributable to extra-national forces like globalisation and technological progress, it doesn’t mean that we are powerless to… Read More

Private renting for older people? The All Party Parliamentary Group on Ageing and Older People

There is concern that a growing number of people are likely to find themselves living in the private rented sector in their old age. This has been the topic for the latest enquiry undertaken by the APPG on Ageing and Older People. It met on March 20th to discuss what is happening to older people living in the private rented sector and to think about what can be done to help. Christine Whitehead… Read More

Art and globalisation: interview with Prof Andy Thornley

LSE London recently welcomed Emeritus Professor of Urban Planning, Andy Thornley back for a lunch visit. Andy is an LSE alumnus and was the Director of the Planning Studies programme from 1994-2009. His work has been influential across planning circles for many years. In 2011, he published the second edition of Planning World Cities: Globalisation and Urban Politics (Palgrave, 2011) along with Peter Newman. The book analyses the role planning has played… Read More

Day 22: Green Belt and Metropolitan Open Land [M65]

by Alan Mace Green belt had already been discussed in earlier sessions including when the relationship between London and the wider region was considered. This session was focused on Policies G2 and G3 in the new London Plan which refer directly to green belt and to Metropolitan Open Land (MOL). The session opened with a GLA official making the best they could of defending an indefensible position. The Mayor has gone beyond… Read More

How is gentrification impacting contemporary London?

by Meera Kumar and Zach Jenson Gentrification has been a topic of considerable interest in London for decades now, but over that time the mechanisms by which it shapes the city have continually shifted. Which communities and practices are responsible for the bulk of the gentrifying, and which communities are disproportionately affected? Should we be paying more attention to new-build developments, or the growing trend in buy-to-let? How are people responding to… Read More

No fault evictions: next steps and foreseeable problems

by Christine Whitehead It was good to see the announcement by James Brokenshire yesterday that the government has decided to put an end to Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions and has accepted the majority view expressed to their consultation on longer term tenancies in the sector that tenancies should last indefinitely. The original consultation suggested a three-year tenancy with a probationary period, so the shift in thinking towards giving tenants far greater… Read More

HBF Policy Conference 2019: ‘Confronting the housing crisis’, John Stewart memorial presentation

On March 26th, Christine Whitehead spoke at the Home Builders Federation (HBF) Policy Conference 2019. Her presentation, entitled ‘Confronting the housing crisis’, was the first in what is to become an annual series of memorial presentations honouring the life of the late John Stewart, HBF’s former Director on Economic Affairs. The conference brought together different industry stakeholders to discuss key issues around planning, modern methods of construction, the current and future housing… Read More