Posts Tagged ‘London’

The UK riots: can we really blame architects?

17/10/2011

In August this year, sporadic rioting took place in cities up and down the country, starting in London and quickly spreading north to Liverpool and Manchester. The rioting progressed from a reactionary ‘protest’, to opportunistic looting and vandalism. And so began a short-lived stint of national soul searching, asking why and how, before moving swiftly onto who: other than the perpetrators themselves, who is to blame? Parents, our deficit-cutting government, social networks, and even the bankers were amongst the first to be held responsible, until urban planners, designers and architects were once again put under the spotlight.

Riots

Looting of a Primark store in Peckham, South London

As the rioting moved north from London, Building.co.uk contributor Ike Ijeh highlighted the correlation between society and architecture in his article The UK Riots: Is Architecture Irrelevant? Architects, he says, “have a clear social responsibility to improve the built environment and nourish a collective sense of citizenship and community.” But can we really blame architects, urban planners or designers? (more…)