September 18, 2014

Zombie Towns: The impact of international wealth on the supercities

Gladys We links to this piece in The Guardian by Oliver Wainwright:

The truth about property developers: how they are exploiting planning authorities and ruining our cities
Affordable housing quotas get waived and the interests of residents trampled as toothless authorities bow to the dazzling wealth of investors from Russia, China and the Middle East

.Across the country – and especially in superheated London, where stratospheric land values beget accordingly bloated developments – authorities are allowing planning policies to be continually flouted, affordable housing quotas to be waived, height limits breached, the interests of residents endlessly trampled.

Places are becoming ever meaner and more divided, as public assets are relentlessly sold off, entire council estates flattened to make room for silos of luxury safe-deposit boxes in the sky. We are replacing homes with investment units, to be sold overseas and never inhabited, substituting community for vacancy. The more we build, the more our cities are emptied, producing dead swathes of zombie town where the lights might never even be switched on.

 
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Extensive article here.
 
 

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Comments

  1. I am surprised there have been no comments, as you could have swapped in Vancouver for London and the stories were nearly identical. Civic government addicted to Community Amenity Contributions, zoning and long time planning practises thrown out the window for the developer with latest shiny trinket…it’s the same story.