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Old March 25th, 2011, 04:09 PM   #301
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Some impressive before and after aerial shots of London developments:

http://mappinglondon.co.uk/2011/03/2...tos-of-london/
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Old March 25th, 2011, 05:37 PM   #302
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Langur View Post
"Private communication tools"? "Personal immersion devices"? The latter sounds like a Japanese hot tub! I suggest you stop writing in this abysmal pseudo-academic jargon and instead express yourself in simple and plain English. You'll come across far better.

I suspect "personal immersion devices" refers to things like iPods. People have been listening to Walkmans and their successors since the '80s. The idea that they should be banned in public spaces, or that private business should be blamed for innovating things that people enjoy, is just wrong, wrong, wrong.... Leave people alone. Let them choose for themselves.
oh so you did manage to imagine what I was writing. I also did not say that they should or even could be banned I said that there was an issue which Simon Jenkins touched on but he managed to miss the larger far more uncomfortable question (which he does all the time).

Urban spaces are social spaces. The idea that only the home and work place is a social place and everything in between is some sort of inconvenient commuter tube is a relatively recent phenomena and is directly associated with the modernist view of the city as a machine, which has by and large shaped towns and cities into their current form in the UK and across the world.

The far-reaching effects of poor social interactivity in the modern city are well documented. This doesn't mean you should not listen to music on the itouch or watch films on ipads or contact facebook friends on the iphone (is that plain enough?) but there should be policies to counter their anti-social impact on the urban realm, namely make urban places more inviting to stay and spend time in and engage in other activities.

Personal entertainment and communication devices have come on leaps and bounds in the past couple of decades, as has home entertainment technology for even longer. Has the urban realm?

Well we still have the town and country planning guide book from 1947.

Last edited by potto; March 25th, 2011 at 05:43 PM.
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Old March 25th, 2011, 08:14 PM   #303
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I'm for mobile signal on the tube. The tube is already a grim place to be, mobile signal won't change that.

I think they should get some greenery going in the underground passages. A few hanging baskets carefully located so not to get in the way of ferocious commuters. The air quality is mucky to say the least.
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Old March 25th, 2011, 08:27 PM   #304
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodgnome View Post
How London is bouncing back from the recession

-- Link to Guardian article --

London has recovered from the banking crisis far more sharply than almost everyone predicted, while much of the rest of the country remains in the doldrums
The gulf (social and economic) between London and the rest of the country is one of the biggest problems in the UK today. I would love a regional city to be able to compete with London, if only to shoulder some of the burden of immigration.
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Old March 26th, 2011, 12:31 PM   #305
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Finally finished London: The Biography last night ... all 800 pages. Easily one of the best books I've ever read.

This was a present for my 22nd birthday. In other words, it's almost exactly 10 years to the day since I began reading it!

Peter Ackroyd is a genius. I love his style and the way he describes the sights, sounds, smells, noises, crowds and atmosphere of London's streets, the legendary stories from its past, and its rise from a small Roman village to the capital of a global empire. He did a TV series too (see below). Highly recommended!


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Old March 26th, 2011, 01:12 PM   #306
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I'm about to start that book. I would also highly recommend, 'London: a social history' by Roy Porter
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Old March 26th, 2011, 03:36 PM   #307
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We often cite on here the wonderful mix of architectual styles from various points in history that make London unique in the stable of large cities, and wonder if this is noticed by visitors. I idled across this blog posting by an American visitor who made this very point (plus observed the Stabucks on every corner just like home!).

http://www.abroadco.com/Blogs/Ann/ar...7AndAgain.aspx
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Old March 26th, 2011, 04:12 PM   #308
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I read Acroyd's London three years ago and I found it the most exciting urban history book ever written. You will never get bored by reading it, highly recommended indeed.
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Old March 27th, 2011, 07:38 PM   #309
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More and more each year, we live in an urban world. Half the global population already lives in cities and generates more than 80 percent of global GDP. And each week, the urban population increases by more than 1 million people, an amount equivalent to adding seven Chicagos to the face of the planet each year.

Futhermore, the center of gravity of the urban landscape is moving south and east, and growth is increasingly coming from second-tier cities. Companies looking for growth and governments engaged in diplomacy, need to build their efforts on an understanding of this urban world at a more granular level. Country-specific thinking may no longer be specific enough.

On the face of it, the urban world might seem static. Today, 600 cities generate 60 percent of global GDP, and our research suggests that 600 cities will also account for about 60 percent of world GDP in 2025. Fifteen years from now, however, they will be a dramatically different set of cities.

The developed world boasts 380 cities in the current list of the top 600 cities, ranked by GDP. These cities account for half the world's total economic output; one-fifth of global GDP comes from the 190 cities in North American alone. Meanwhile, the 220 largest cities in developing regions contribute a mere 10 percent.

But the balance of urban economic power will be transformed over the next 15 years. One out of every three developed cities will drop off the top 600 cities list by 2025, while just one out of every 20 cities in emerging markets will lose their place in this ranking. By 2025, 136 new cities will have entered the top 600, all of them from the developing world.





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London is not a city. It is more like a country, and living in it is like living in Holland or Belgium. Its completeness makes it deceptive - there are sidewalks from one frontier to the other - and its hugeness makes it possible for everyone to invent his own city. My London is not your London, though everyone's Washington, DC is pretty much the same.
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Old March 31st, 2011, 01:30 PM   #310
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image hosted on flickr


The changing amount of skyscrapers in London. All buildings with white text are already built (complete) the ones with yellow text are currently under construction and with red text are approved and awaiting construction.

Most of the buildings I did for 2027 will in fact be built before this decade ends say 2019.

I like skyscrapers so I am happy to see this being born in 1990 East London I remember just the odd One Canada Square, BT Tower & Tower 42 being alone growing up in what I considered pathetic clusters. But boy have things changed and continue to change.
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Old March 31st, 2011, 03:26 PM   #311
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Nice first post, welcome!

You would you happen to have a larger/ clearer image of that diagram? I can work out what most of them are by their shape, but the text is unreadable. There are several buildings I can't work out what they are in the 2027 diagram. A larger pic would be very much appreciated
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Old April 1st, 2011, 07:55 AM   #312
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+1. London rules..
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Old April 1st, 2011, 08:43 AM   #313
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Chinese run the world

Quote:
Originally Posted by woodgnome View Post

More and more each year, we live in an urban world. Half the global population already lives in cities and generates more than 80 percent of global GDP. And each week, the urban population increases by more than 1 million people, an amount equivalent to adding seven Chicagos to the face of the planet each year.

Futhermore, the center of gravity of the urban landscape is moving south and east, and growth is increasingly coming from second-tier cities. Companies looking for growth and governments engaged in diplomacy, need to build their efforts on an understanding of this urban world at a more granular level. Country-specific thinking may no longer be specific enough.

On the face of it, the urban world might seem static. Today, 600 cities generate 60 percent of global GDP, and our research suggests that 600 cities will also account for about 60 percent of world GDP in 2025. Fifteen years from now, however, they will be a dramatically different set of cities.

The developed world boasts 380 cities in the current list of the top 600 cities, ranked by GDP. These cities account for half the world's total economic output; one-fifth of global GDP comes from the 190 cities in North American alone. Meanwhile, the 220 largest cities in developing regions contribute a mere 10 percent.

But the balance of urban economic power will be transformed over the next 15 years. One out of every three developed cities will drop off the top 600 cities list by 2025, while just one out of every 20 cities in emerging markets will lose their place in this ranking. By 2025, 136 new cities will have entered the top 600, all of them from the developing world.





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Old April 2nd, 2011, 02:13 AM   #314
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[QUOTE=wjfox;74949769]Finally finished London: The Biography last night ... all 800 pages. Easily one of the best books I've ever read.

This was a present for my 22nd birthday. In other words, it's almost exactly 10 years to the day since I began reading it!

Peter Ackroyd is a genius. I love his style and the way he describes the sights, sounds, smells, noises, crowds and atmosphere of London's streets, the legendary stories from its past, and its rise from a small Roman village to the capital of a global empire. He did a TV series too (see below). Highly recommended!



Tingle down the spine moment

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vz5yD...yer_detailpage

Yep, the guy is a genius.
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Old April 20th, 2011, 12:37 PM   #315
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Gherkin architect declares end of London skyscraper boom

-- Link to Guardian article --

The architect of the Gherkin has declared that the "age of bling" is over in the City, pronouncing the end of the London skyscraper boom.

The recently-finished Heron Tower, along with the Shard, the Cheesegrater and the Walkie Talkie, which are still under construction and are due to open by 2014, will be the last generation of iconic skyscrapers, he says, as property developers turn to more modest, less expensive schemes. The towers were all conceived before the financial crisis and some of them were nearly scrapped during the property downturn.

"The age of bling is over," Ken Shuttleworth, the architect at Norman Foster's firm which designed the Gherkin, told Bloomberg News. He said the 40-storey tower, which opened in 2004, would never get off the ground today. "Money now drives everything, so if you can build something for half the price, you will." Tenants are demanding "austere and efficient" buildings that are more likely to be "ground-scrapers" than high-rises, he said. "The tall glass box is dead."

Tall buildings cost more to build than low-rise structures with the same amount of space. At the same time, many tenants are reluctant to pay a premium for being in a tower as belt-tightening continues.

Property tycoon Gerald Ronson recently admitted it will take about 18 months to let all space in his Heron Tower, with the lower floors going for about £55 a sq ft while the top floors will command more. Rents in the City today are around the same level as in the 1980s.

Nonetheless, demand for office space in the City is on the rise again. Assuming that banks and other financial firms will be taking on 11,500 new staff over the next three years as the economy recovers, BNP Paribas Real Estate estimates that they will need an additional 1.6m sq ft of space – equivalent to four Shards or five Heron Towers.

Its research shows that typical take up in the City is 3.1m sq ft every year, and the banks' expansion will mean extra requirements of about 550,000 sq ft a year up to 2014. Two of the biggest new office buildings, the Cheesegrater and the Walkie Talkie, will not be completed until 2014.

Dan Bayley, head of central London at BNP Paribas Real Estate, said: "The general trend seems to be that the smaller – perhaps more nimble – occupiers expect to see the strongest growth; the really big banks are only expecting very modest growth. This suggests that the trend we have seen in the first quarter – more deals but fewer really big ones – is likely to continue."

According to DTZ Research, free space in the City amounted to 7.2m sq ft at the end of March. Availability has risen by 201,000 sq ft, nearly 3%, after December. Within this, the amount of secondhand space available is down by 8%, while new space grew by 14%.
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London is not a city. It is more like a country, and living in it is like living in Holland or Belgium. Its completeness makes it deceptive - there are sidewalks from one frontier to the other - and its hugeness makes it possible for everyone to invent his own city. My London is not your London, though everyone's Washington, DC is pretty much the same.
The London Embassy - Paul Theroux
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Old April 20th, 2011, 02:47 PM   #316
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Lol- so the Architect who has just had a gold/bronze coloured 50+ tower in Croydon submitted says the era of jazzy Skyscrapers in London is over
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Old April 21st, 2011, 11:03 AM   #317
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It seems Ken isn't quite right.


The City still prefers high-rise
Thursday 21st April 2011, 1:47am GMT
PROPERTY
ERIC WILKENS

PROPERTY developers and architects across the City yesterday refuted architect Ken Shuttleworth’s comments that the “age of bling” for skyscrapers is over.

Shuttleworth, who designed the Gherkin building in 2004, created a stir by saying the 40-story tower would never get off the ground today. “Money now drives everything, so if you can build something for half the price, you will,” he said.

But Baron Phillips, spokesman for the developer of the Shard, which will be London’s tallest building when it is completed in 2012, disagreed and said high-rises are a more logical use of land, regardless of price.

“London is unbelievably spread out and it’s because of the low-rise development in the city. It shows that the city isn’t using the land properly. Building more towers maximises the precious use of space in London.”

While five new skyscrapers will join the London skyline by 2014, Paul Katz, managing principal of KPF, the designer of the Heron Tower, said he was surprised about Shuttleworth’s comments.

“While the ‘age of bling’ might be over for skyscrapers and high-rises, we really need to evaluate whether skyscrapers should be bling in the first place.”

Chris Wilkinson, director of Wilkinson Eyre Architects, added: “It is nonsense to say that the age of the skyscraper is coming to an end when it has only just begun.

“Towers are inherently economical in terms of land use and can be designed as sustainable, low energy users, so their future is assured.”
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Old April 22nd, 2011, 03:42 PM   #318
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Urban explorers do mail rail
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Old April 22nd, 2011, 04:59 PM   #319
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I was wondering, where is the best area for skyscraper spotting in London? Is it somewhere in Canary Wharf or in the City? I'll be there in September and will study in London for three years.

Thanks.
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Old April 23rd, 2011, 05:09 AM   #320
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Tower Bridge to get colour-changing lights for 2012 Olympics

-- Link to London SE1 article --

As work is completed on the repainting of Tower Bridge, City Hall has announced plans for a new lighting system to highlight the structure's architectural features at night. The major restoration of Tower Bridge was completed at the end of March and with the polyethylene wraps removed from the freshly painted bascules, the bridge is now back in full operation.

"As custodians of one of the world's most iconic and much-loved structures, it is a privilege to be trusted with the responsibility of ensuring it is preserved for future generations to enjoy," said bridge master Eric Sutherns MBE.

Tower Bridge was the creation of architect Sir Horace Jones and civil engineer Sir John Wolfe-Barry. It was originally painted a greenish-blue colour and was a chocolate brown before adopting its present colours of blue, white and red for the Queen's Silver Jubilee in 1976. John Wolfe-Barry, the engineer's great grandson, was guest of honour at a reception to celebrate the completion of the £4 million repainting project.

Now the Mayor of London has announced a deal between City Hall, City of London Corporation, EDF and GE to install a state-of-the-art energy-efficient lighting system on Tower Bridge. Plans include LEDs, flexible lighting and a new cabling system to complement the bridge's features – such as its gothic turrets, central aerial walkway and suspension chains – in colours sensitive to its listed building status. The lighting system will be flexible, allowing for both varying colours and intensity of light, enabling Tower Bridge to respond to special events in a spectacular manner.

City Hall claims that the use of energy efficient LED technology will reduce the energy consumption of the lighting system by an estimated 40 per cent on today's usage. The new lighting system will require planning permission from Southwark Council and Tower Hamlets Council. If planning permission is granted, work could start by September and be completed by spring 2012 in time for the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

"I want London to look its very best in 2012 as the eyes of the world are upon us," said Boris Johnson. "Tower Bridge is one of this city's most stunning landmarks, recognised the world over and therefore deserving of a star role in these year-long celebrations. I am thrilled to have brokered this deal – at no cost to the taxpayer – to bathe Tower Bridge in eco-friendly light to create a fresh perspective of this wonderful icon. This is another great legacy for London stretching for decades beyond the Olympic year."

EDF Energy will become the lighting electricity supplier for Tower Bridge and will match every unit of electricity that it supplies to Tower Bridge with power generated from low carbon sources. "Following our partnership with the London Eye, EDF is delighted to be involved in this exciting project to help reduce the carbon footprint of another iconic London landmark ahead of the games," says EDF Energy chief executive Vincent de Rivaz.

Changes to Tower Bridge can prove controversial, as the City of London Corporation found when it applied for permission to put advertising on polythene wrap covering the bridge's bascules during the repainting work. EDF's sponsorship of the London Eye has also provoked a dispute between the wheel's owners and Lambeth Council as to whether the corporate EDF orange paint applied to one of the wheel's capsules constitutes an advertisement for the energy company.

If Tower Bridge's new lighting system turns orange we could see a similar debate in Southwark and Tower Hamlets.
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The London Embassy - Paul Theroux
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