Monthly Archives: April 2013

Quote of the day–tradition

Tradition is what you make it. That is, most traditions were someone’s bright idea which was successful enough to persist long enough for people to forget that it was once someone’s bright idea. Stuart Brand, How Buildings Learn Advertisements

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Posted in Design

The arts and the local economy

The arts can have an impact on the local economy in several ways The arts as a community/personal activity. This can range from what is almost art therapy (the promotion of self esteem etc) to community-based projects – not just

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Posted in Economy

Let us build forever

When we build, let us think that we build forever. Let it not be for present delight, nor for present use alone. Let it be for such work as our descendants will thank us for. John Ruskin, Seven Lamps of

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Posted in Design

New ideas–old buildings?

Only operations that are well-established, high turnover, standardised or highly subsidized can afford, commonly, to carry the costs of new construction. Chain stores, chain restaurants and banks can go into new construction. But neighbourhood bars, foreign restaurants and pawn shops

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Posted in Town Centre

The post-Portas high street

If you are a retail chain which tries to offer everything to everyone, with a combination of real and online presence, and solid monopolistic aspirations, you are probably fine. If you are a small store, owned and controlled locally, with

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Posted in Town Centre

What makes a good place–and how do we get one?

Evidence collected from the UK suggests that top of the list of what is important to people is ‘neighbourhood’ (not the same as community, which scores much lower). Neighbourhood includes but is not confined, to good schools, open spaces, safe

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Posted in Design

The welfare road we failed to take

When we compare the Victorian antecedents of our public institutions with the organs of working-class mutual aid in the same period the very names speak volumes. On the one side the Workhouse, the Poor Law Infirmary, the National Society for

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Posted in Community