Who owns the City?

This is an extract from Anna Minton’s walking-tour for the Chisenhale Gallery in 2010 when the tour stopped in Canary Wharf in the heart of the Docklands in Tower Hamlets. She talks about what privately owned urban spaces involve in terms of regulation and control. What strikes most, is that Canary Wharf was not only built by big financial corporations, over the last years it served as main model for UK city center development. Good energy in this speech! The full walking tour can be seen here. Anna Minton is the author of Ground Control.

Social Life of Small Urban Spaces

This is William H. Whyte‘s film ‘Social Life of Small Urban Spaces’ on the social dynamics of public squares and streets.  At the time, it was considered as pioneering research because it used film cameras to study human conduct in measurable and objectiv way. The film was published with a book of the same title in 1980.

Whyte was also the founder of the Project for Public Spaces back in 1975. Today, PPS is a non-profit organisation that is using a Placemaking approach to advise on public space issues.