The Public Sphere

I have been sent the attached excellent article about a new exhibition at MOMA about small-scale, architect-generated public projects in New York, which are designed to rectify what I think of as the current impoverishment of the public sphere.

There are good initiatives in London, too, of which the pedestrianisation of the Strand is an excellent example – getting rid of traffic, putting in seating, making St. Mary-le-Strand accessible, treating the City as a platform for interaction, not a place of pure profit. I see it was done by the Centre for Urban Science and Progress (CUSP) at King’s College, London and I hope they win lots of awards for it.

The new Queen Elizabeth line also has a sense of generosity and spaciousness in its design. If only this could have extended to providing what used to be known as Public Conveniences. I don’t know what they are now called because they no longer exist.

PEOPLE OVER PROFIT as the graffiti says on the front of the increasingly derelict Whitechapel Bell Foundry which has become a morality tale for our times, lining the pockets of politicians instead of acting for the public good.


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