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Old April 3rd, 2014, 01:48 AM   #9781
gehenaus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erbse View Post
Where exactly is the unfounded criticism to be found at?
I think at least I made my point very clear and differentiated. I love London, but it's in danger of losing part of its appeal at least in my eyes.

Btw, feel free to go to the Berlin thread and check its current projects. There's a lot to mock, but also loads to love. Just like with London's current projects. Still it's so different.
Fair enough, you've been very civil.
I do wish people would stop hyping London up.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 02:41 AM   #9782
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Not really. Britain was considered progressive and liberal up until the late Victorian era after which the country has been seen as socially and politically conservative. In comparison France, with its so called "museum cities" (in which you can find truly spectacular modern architecture) is far more famous for rejecting tradition. The French have long enjoyed the avant garde, a good philosophical discussion and revolutionary thinking and acting. This is something the largely conservative anglosaxon world has always ridiculed France for. The anglosaxon world has always placed popular and corporate culture above the avant garde. Hence all the France- related jokes.

Building glass buildings does not equal progress. Most of these buildings serve a very conservative ideology.
That's right, most of the most modern buildings in London serve little more than corporate interests.

The City of London may have all its peculiarities and ceremonies, but it's a CBD nowadays. I walked a lot of times straight through it at night, and it's eerily silent. I've never felt so much in danger anywhere else in Europe.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 03:10 AM   #9783
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Fair enough, you've been very civil.
I do wish people would stop hyping London up.
Agree. The braggadocio that often crops up here is boring.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 09:52 AM   #9784
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Please please please please please please stop. There needs to be a forum rule that comparisons aimed at putting one city above or below another should be banned, it leads to threads being utterly ruined and dominated by easily offended over-sensitive egos and conversely by bullies, and rapidly degenerates into threads becoming entirely personal (winning a fight) rather than about the city itself. Its not a zero-sum game, one doesnt have to "beat" another, in fact if that is what you are trying to do then go be a football fan and stay well away from urbanism: each city is unique... crappy and brilliant in its own way, and you show your total lack of appreciation of what makes your city special -in all its complex glory- by trying to present it as "the best" and glossing over its contradictions, history, and multiple facets... the very things that make it REAL. Now bog off and stop trying to "defend" London, my beautifully ugly and complex home, it can defend itself.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 10:28 AM   #9785
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stravinsky View Post
That's right, most of the most modern buildings in London serve little more than corporate interests.

The City of London may have all its peculiarities and ceremonies, but it's a CBD nowadays. I walked a lot of times straight through it at night, and it's eerily silent. I've never felt so much in danger anywhere else in Europe.
ermmm.....

Yes the City of London is quiet at weekends, but the most dangerous place in Europe? I don't think so.

Actually, and as someone who works in the City of London, on Monday to Friday nights there are lots of people out and about!

It's been interesting reading the last couple of pages, there have been some good points on both sides. A point others have mentioned and one that I would like to highlight is that these skyscrapers and other new projects are nearly always built in brownfield areas or replace buildings with little architectural merit and they are nearly always catalysts for further improvements in the area. Just look at Canary Wharf, Kings Cross and Vauxhall/Nine Elms...I think when/if we start seeing skyscraper proposals for Kensington, Regents Park, Bloomsbury, then we can begin to worry.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 11:47 AM   #9786
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stravinsky View Post
That's right, most of the most modern buildings in London serve little more than corporate interests.

The City of London may have all its peculiarities and ceremonies, but it's a CBD nowadays. I walked a lot of times straight through it at night, and it's eerily silent. I've never felt so much in danger anywhere else in Europe.


I'm not entirely sure what your point is?

You seem to be saying that for a building to have value it should be open to the public and have history?

The core of London, the City of London has always been a business district.

Who cares if buildings only serve a corporate interest… 70% of all buildings in major cities, new or old only serve corporate interests.

If you want public spaces then visit the royal parks, enter the major museums for free, head out into the beautiful English countryside…

If you want dangerous, then travel to Marseille… it was recently voted the most dangerous city in Europe.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 12:11 PM   #9787
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^ You're right that of course the City is a corporate heaven, but it seems to lack a soul nowadays. I mean, there's hardly anything going on besides business and regular hand waving sessions of the Queen.

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I'm struggling to understand what you are getting at? It doesn't sound like you have ever been to London!
I've been several times and come back regularly.

Unlike Warsaw, London didn't reconstruct what was lost in WW2, but instead has torn down even more and replaced a lot with what I'd call depressing modernist atrocities. It's still a bustling and visually imposing city, with loads of historical quarters to experience, but London doesn't have a real old town core anymore. Similar to Berlin even.
Unlike Warsaw that was, may I remind you, completely levelled. It virtually rose from the ashes like a phoenix. Nowadays it's a designated World Heritage old town. Have a look at this thread.
Same goes btw for Gdansk/Danzig.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 12:26 PM   #9788
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Originally Posted by erbse View Post
^ You're right that of course the City is a corporate heaven, but it seems to lack a soul nowadays. I mean, there's hardly anything going on besides business and regular hand waving sessions of the Queen.


The City of London has never truly had a 'soul'… it has always been the business district.. its crowded in the day, the pubs are full on weeknights … but at the weekends, its pretty much empty.

If you have ever been to New York, to Wall Street… it is, or was until recently (they've started to allow some residential and recreational facilities there) exactly the same… busy during work hours, then like a ghost town after and on weekends.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 12:29 PM   #9789
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Sadly in NYC it isn't limited to Wall Street, but most of Manhattan and celebrated Brooklyn even. "The city that never sleeps", forcing all pubs/clubs to close at either 2 or 4 AM. Meatpacker District, my ass. Luckily, there's a lot more going on in London. Yet.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 12:48 PM   #9790
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Can't really give an opinion. Last time I went to NYC was about 3 years ago… I'm working my way around Europe at the moment… Poland this year with the girlfriend (she's Polish).
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 01:16 PM   #9791
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erbse View Post
Sadly in NYC it isn't limited to Wall Street, but most of Manhattan and celebrated Brooklyn even. "The city that never sleeps", forcing all pubs/clubs to close at either 2 or 4 AM. Meatpacker District, my ass. Luckily, there's a lot more going on in London. Yet.
Those who call it the city who never sleeps have obviously never been to Madrid and desperately need to travel a little more.

Last time I was there has been a few years ago, but I remember walking for tens of blocks in Manhattan without spotting any sign of human activity.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 01:18 PM   #9792
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The City of London has never truly had a 'soul'… it has always been the business district.. its crowded in the day, the pubs are full on weeknights … but at the weekends, its pretty much empty.
That's how a CBD works like. And the CBD paradigm has not proven itselft very succesful, in fact.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 02:13 PM   #9793
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erbse View Post
Sadly in NYC it isn't limited to Wall Street, but most of Manhattan and celebrated Brooklyn even. "The city that never sleeps", forcing all pubs/clubs to close at either 2 or 4 AM. Meatpacker District, my ass. Luckily, there's a lot more going on in London. Yet.
FYI - Bars and clubs in New York close at 4am, not 2am. The Meatpacking district is a rather small area, the East Village and Lower East Side have much larger concentrations of nightlife.

But I digress. In my opinion London is the perfect blend of new and old. I only see these new projects energizing the city rather than destroying its history. Certainly I would have different feelings about Rome or Venice, but London is a major economic center.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 03:48 PM   #9794
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That's why it certainly won't harm London to preserve some microscopical islands of tradition. It'll only contribute to the city's appeal and a bright future.

That's all I want to achieve here. For London to keep what makes it special among all those global uniform cities. This or this certainly isn't what London should aspire to by any means. London is so much more refined than all those bland random megacities looking for a place in this world by erecting garish freaking towers.
Disagree with your comments Erbse. Nearly all the new skyscrapers in the City replaced 60s buildings. Very few Georgian and Victorian buildings are destroyed these days. They're also built only in tiny parts of the City. Most of Central London is the West End/Westminster, which is generally well preserved. The West End is also packed with nightlife and streetlife, easily the largest and densest concentration in Europe. The West End/Westminster is also London's biggest business district, containing the most office space, generating the most output, etc.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 04:07 PM   #9795
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It's not so much about what the towers replaced, but how they change the cityscape around St. Paul's and the very center, the historical core of London. It's turning into an eeky, gagaesque design contest, that might look sort of fashionable right now, but could look very dated in a matter of years. And might look only crazier in the future. Unlike the towers of e.g. Frankfurt or even La Defense, the London ones don't harmonize too well, each one of them crying too hard for attention. As I stated, the Gherkin is to blame for this development.

I understand some people like this, but I'd prefer to see this development outside the City itself.

I mean, seriously... Why?

This would be a so much better place:

London Canary Wharf von david.bank (www.david-bank.com) auf Flickr

And there's plenty of space right next to it, with loads of suburban postwar houses and abominations to replace.
Canary Wharf has that wonderful Manhattan-esque situation to it, as well.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 04:28 PM   #9796
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Manhattan-like Canary Wharf / Isle of Dogs still offers plenty of usable space for really imposing skyscrapers, with vast suburban areas all around:


Source / full resolution


Source

Nobody's gonna miss any of these postwar suburban blocks or all the useless greenspace. Besides, I suspect the land prices are considerably more affordable for investors there. And skyscrapers make so much more of an impression there.

Why do you need to screw up the City any further?
I ask London to stop it, on behalf of human urban planning culture!
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 08:13 PM   #9797
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If you want to debate, fine. However, insults, off-topic nonsense and other personal attacks won't be tolerated. Keep things civil. A new thread will be set up for debating such things as this thread is more about showcasing projects.
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Old April 3rd, 2014, 09:30 PM   #9798
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I really understand your point Erbse, old preserved city centers are really nice and quite unique for many cities in Europe! We should defintitely not detroy old buildings and replace them with skyscrapers.

In London's case that's not the matter though, all they do is making quite dull and boring post-war districts look much more fresh and inspiring. I really love what London is doing at the moment, it's something that I haven't seen in any other city. Reinventing itself with several new hubs of modern, cool (and high) architecture but at the same time managing to keep its image and heritage. London will look both futuristic and old-fashioned at the same time when the clusters at Vauxhall, Canary Wharf, The City and Southwark are more built up, now they're still in progress and you really cannot judge them yet.

London have something that many other cities in development not have, a good plan. That takes in mind important things as preserving sightlines and keeping places like Westminister and West-End (which would be ruined by too nearby built highrises) protected. The City already had a few mid/high-rises that existed when the Gherkin and following skyscrapers were built, adding some more ones to the already existing ones will not ruin anything, just improve!

ps. Canary Wharf has the most new skyscrapers in-planning by far in London!
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Old April 4th, 2014, 12:21 AM   #9799
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I have always considered Millwall open dock, the large dock at the bottom of the IOD as an opportunity to do something really interesting. At the moment its not really developed to it's full potential the buildings very 80's. The only downside is its lack of transport only really connected by the DLR, a possible solution creating a loop around the IOD although I'm not sure how financially feasible that is.
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Old April 4th, 2014, 02:35 AM   #9800
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Chambers Wharf

by Retro Specs.

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