Heygate Estate's public art pyramid from Artangel and Mike Nelson

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Thursday 12 December 2013 11.58pm
From today's Guardian:

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2013/dec/12/heygate-pyramid-london-estate-evicted-condemn-artwork

"As a symbol of a city gentrifying at warp speed it could hardly be more literal: within weeks of the last resident being evicted from a condemned council estate in south London, a team of art workers moves in to dismantle one of the blocks and rebuild it as a sculpture in the shape of a giant pyramid.

That is the likely fate of part of the Heygate estate in Elephant and Castle as Southwark council considers the proposal by the British installation artist Mike Nelson, a plan condemned by some ex-residents as insensitive...
"
Friday 13 December 2013 1.42am
I think that a pyramid would be a fitting memorial to the hubris of a number of Southwark's politicos, especially if Peter John gets buried there.
Friday 13 December 2013 10.23am
According to the Guardian, the Council is considering an idea by Artangel to reconfigure part of the Heygate as a pyramid.

NB The article describes it as:
Quote:
a symbol of a city gentrifying at warp speed

Given how long the E&C redevelopment has taken already and the terrible lack of ambition of the Council and developers (Where's the theatre gone? Where's the new public space to create a new Trafalgar Square South of the river? Why did Camden get Waitrose to open at Brunswick Square but Southwark is content with a Sainsbury at E&C), it doesn't really feel like warp speed gentrification, does it?
Friday 13 December 2013 2.41pm
Interesting that you frequently refer to "gentrification" - my recall of the council position on this has been that "regeneration" is their aim not gentrification. Whether they are sustaining that approach and reinforcing it by their actions is a matter of opinion I'm sure. I think gentrification was considered to have unpleasant connotations which were not part of the stated aims.
Friday 13 December 2013 3.10pm
i think it's a fantastic idea, and should remain as a permanent feature of the biggest new park in central london in the last 70 years. another positive thing about pyramids is LOADS of work for the locals or at least one job for one local person.

as importantly, living next to a pyramid is bound to boost the value of your property.

more of that sort of thing i say
Friday 13 December 2013 3.37pm
SophieLondon wrote:
Interesting that you frequently refer to "gentrification" - my recall of the council position on this has been that "regeneration" is their aim not gentrification. Whether they are sustaining that approach and reinforcing it by their actions is a matter of opinion I'm sure. I think gentrification was considered to have unpleasant connotations which were not part of the stated aims.

I agree. This pyramid falls under gentrification rather than regeneration and the only idea/message it conveys to me is that it will bury the whole history of the Heygate. No doubt art lovers from all corners of the world will be delighted it, I am a bit more sceptical (cynical?).
Friday 13 December 2013 3.54pm
SophieLondon wrote:
Interesting that you frequently refer to "gentrification" - my recall of the council position on this has been that "regeneration" is their aim not gentrification. Whether they are sustaining that approach and reinforcing it by their actions is a matter of opinion I'm sure. I think gentrification was considered to have unpleasant connotations which were not part of the stated aims.

'Gentrify' is the word that the Guardian used in their article, and is a word often used locally to describe the E&C regeneration, Sophie.

My point is that the council really isn't gentrifying the place (even at a speed slower than 'warp').

Their timidity and lack of vision means that, in spite of its lofty aims of theatres, public spaces, trams etc, all that's going to happen is that some good, spacious 20th century social housing and a 1960s shopping centre are going to be replaced by some 21st century private slums with a new/renovated shopping centre containing the same chain stores as everywhere else, hemmed in by wide roads.

The regeneration has lost sight of the good bits of its vision (the bits that would have improved the E&C as a place to live) and is only delivering those aspects that benefit property developers and absentee landlords.
TAK
Friday 13 December 2013 4.02pm
Quote:
My point is that the council really isn't gentrifying the place (even at a speed slower than 'warp').

Their timidity and lack of vision means that, in spite of its lofty aims of theatres, public spaces, trams etc, all that's going to happen is that some good, spacious 20th century social housing and a 1960s shopping centre are going to be replaced by some 21st century private slums with a new/renovated shopping centre containing the same chain stores as everywhere else, hemmed in by wide roads.

The regeneration has lost sight of the good bits of its vision (the bits that would have improved the E&C as a place to live) and is only delivering those aspects that benefit property developers and absentee landlords.

Well said! Don't forget to include the loss of well used squash courts in the so called 'state of the art' new leisure centre...All the ambitions have been chopped out. Also don't forget the hotel and office space originally planned for Oakmayne Plaza that now have become flats and student accommodation. Every single scheme has been watered down over the years.
Friday 13 December 2013 6.02pm
[quote TAK][quote]... Every single scheme has been watered down over the years.[/quote]

Does anyone remember the 14 Guiding Principles of regeneration for the area that were drafted in 1997 by the E+C Residents Regeneration Group? These principles were submitted into the Single Regeneration Budget that gained the area a ton of money for exactly the kind of things the principles were asking for / demanding.

2) No net loss of council / social housing. No forced relocation

3) Retain existing green spaces

5) Encourage diversity of local shops

6) New library, leisure centre and community centres

Just four that have been er...watered down. We have come a long way since then. Poorly though.
Wednesday 18 December 2013 1.17pm
much better idea: why not invite former heygate residents to re-enact the final scene of 'the life of brian'?
this would allow the former residents to finally make a positive contribution to the regeneration?
also, it'd reuse some of the former forest trees so many 'key issues' covered
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