London Cranes

This slice of old Camden Town will soon be joining the 21st Century.

This slice of old Camden Town will soon be joining the 21st Century.

The 21st Century skyline of London is changing fast.

The 21st Century skyline of London is changing fast.

London Cranes
Ian Parson

From anywhere the London skyline is visible you see giant steel arms, bent at the elbow, thrusting upwards. By night they trail bright red lights.
They aren’t giant robots, not yet. These are the cranes, sometimes singular, more often in clusters. London is going through big change.
This is nothing new, London is always adjusting, modernising, call it what you will, we all know that. This is merely the next phase in a constant cycle.

In Aldgate and Whitechapel towers are already up. Prohibitively expensive they may be, but they are undeniably there. Looming over streets in which ordinary people are conducting business as usual.
The newer residents are having to adapt quickly. They better, or that part of the East End will revert back to type. Leaving even more expensive dwellings lying empty, whilst homeless people shelter below them.

A society is judged on how it treats its weakest members and 9000 people are currently sleeping rough every night in England, most of them in London. It’s a damning reflection of the world’s 6th largest economy.

Fortunately the Swedish have developed a solution. Beautiful, wooden kit homes, built to withstand Scandinavian climates. Greenpeace say that on 1% of the brown field around London we can build 2 million of them, 3 storeys high. Lets call them a solution.
You have to be open to alternatives. Some are, others not so much. It’s a shame for those who don’t get it, but it doesn’t matter, the future is already happening, like it or not.

Tower Hamlets Council are currently working in conjunction with the Greater London Authority’s Innovation Fund and doing exciting work. Living up to the innovation part of their name people are already living in stackable pod homes. They can be seen on the site of the Ladywell Leisure Centre in Lewisham.
Let this phase of London’s endless change come soon and take root for the sake of us all. Sometimes we have to just act.
The timing has never been better.
Ian Parson

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