’ – the
name given to this reimagined site – was radically undermined as
the 2008 economic crash unfolded.
As the subprime mortgage market collapsed and financial turmoil ensued, visions for a regenerated Ordsall Riverside ebbed
away. The earlier planning guidance soon became at odds with
what developers were prepared, or financially able, to deliver. The
area, riven by volatile, conflicting time frames of contemporary
capitalism, entered a period of widespread developmental stasis.
However, as landowners, developers and city bureaucrats were
left waiting for change
are explored. The analysis focuses on five common aspects that reveal a central
dominant representation of social change: the identification of exogenous
transformative forces, disciplinary imperatives, historical convergence, social
prescription and the death of conflict. I argue that it is these assumptions
about social change that underpin and perpetuate the contemporary discourse
of imperative labour flexibility. Flexibility itself has an amorphous quality that
allows it to be applied ‘flexibly’ to describe the many facets of the contemporary restructuring
A conceptual framework for considering mapping projects as they change
as foams 209
and changing circumstances, the temporal emergence of a crisis is echoed in the
ways mappings emerge during crisis response.
Maps are an essential medium for organising and sharing information in
emergency contexts – think of the big wall maps common in emergency coordination centres. Crisis maps are online collaborations where volunteers create
maps to help understand and respond to natural disasters and
conflicts. For example, following the huge storm Typhoon Haiyan (locally
known as Yolanda) which hit the Philippines in November 2013
advisor oligopoly not only strengthens the power of
these companies to command very high fees but also creates a
remarkable conflict of interest: at the same time as advising the
public and private sectors in these PFI schemes, the same powerful
accountancy firms are also receiving large sums of money to simultaneously audit the accounts of the SPVs, the main sub-contractors
and the local authorities. As table 6.7 shows, for the 20 housing
PFI contracts, we see that just seven accountancy firms – Grant
Thornton, Deloitte, KPMG, PwC, BDO, EY and PFK – have been
With reference to a site in Gorton, east Manchester, this chapter highlights
how, without regular maintenance and other processes of ordering, a former
industrially productive site can offer a variety of affordances, and, over
time, transform into a verdant wildscape. In so doing, it reveals the
multiple temporalities – some conflicting, some complimentary – that shape
A mix of extracts from the author’s novel, Before The Fire – set in
Manchester during the summer of the UK riots in 2011 – and reflections on
their meaning, or lack of meaning. The piece thinks through the narratives
assigned to the riots and the deep societal conflicts they revealed.
This book explores contemporary urban experiences connected to practices of sharing and collaboration. Part of a growing discussion on the cultural meaning and the politics of urban commons, it uses examples from Europe and Latin America to support the view that a world of mutual support and urban solidarity is emerging today in, against, and beyond existing societies of inequality. In such a world, people experience the potentialities of emancipation activated by concrete forms of space commoning. By focusing on concrete collective experiences of urban space appropriation and participatory design experiments this book traces differing, but potentially compatible, trajectories through which common space (or space-as-commons) becomes an important factor in social change. In the everydayness of self-organized neighborhoods, in the struggles for justice in occupied public spaces, in the emergence of “territories in resistance,” and in dissident artistic practices of collaborative creation, collective inventiveness produces fragments of an emancipated society.
As the tragedy of the Grenfell Tower fire of 14 June 2017 has slowly revealed a shadowy background of outsourcing and deregulation, and a council turning a blind eye to health and safety concerns, many questions need answers. Stuart Hodkinson has those answers. Safe as Houses weaves together Stuart’s research over the last decade with residents’ groups in council regeneration projects across London to provide the first comprehensive account of how Grenfell happened and how it could easily have happened in multiple locations across the country. It draws on examples of unsafe housing either refurbished or built by private companies under the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) to show both the terrible human consequences of outsourcing and deregulation and how the PFI has enabled developers, banks and investors to profiteer from highly lucrative, taxpayer-funded contracts. The book also provides shocking testimonies of how councils and other public bodies have continuously sided with their private partners, doing everything in their power to ignore, deflect and even silence those who speak out. The book concludes that the only way to end the era of unsafe regeneration and housing provision is to end the disastrous regime of self-regulation. This means strengthening safety laws, creating new enforcement agencies independent of government and industry, and replacing PFI and similar models of outsourcing with a new model of public housing that treats the provision of shelter as ‘a social service’ democratically accountable to its residents.
Manchester: Something rich and strange challenges us to see the quintessential
post-industrial city in new ways. Bringing together twenty-three diverse writers
and a wide range of photographs of Greater Manchester, it argues that how we see
the city can have a powerful effect on its future – an urgent question given how
quickly the urban core is being transformed. The book uses sixty different words
to speak about the diversity of what we think of as Manchester – whether the
chimneys of its old mills, the cobbles mostly hidden under the tarmac, the
passages between terraces, or the everyday act of washing clothes in a
laundrette. Unashamedly down to earth in its focus, this book makes the case for
a renewed imaginative relationship that recognises and champions the fact that
we’re all active in the making and unmaking of urban spaces.
The canal network is central to Manchester’s history and identity. A walk
along the towpath offers chance to encounter wildlife and trace the
industrial heritage of the city. However, the waterways occupy an ambivalent
position in the city’s subconscious and are the site of conflict,
contradictions, myths and legends. This chapter offers a glimpse beneath the
surface, including a visit to the lost gardens of Pomona, the contested
queer space of the Undercroft and a brief guide to the legendary canal
monsters of Manchester’s canals.