Catford’s Road Realignment moves forward

Major changes to the South Circular in Catford, which will improve the quality of life for people who live and work in the area, have been agreed at a meeting of Lewisham Council’s Mayor and Cabinet which was held on 19 July 2017.

From 2020/21 the South Circular will be moved to the south of Laurence House on Catford Road (through the car and lorry park). The gyratory will also be removed to create a simpler road layout at the junction of the A21 and A205.

The benefits of moving the South Circular include:

  • Wider pavements and new road crossings to create safer space for people to walk around the town centre.
  • Safer spaces for cyclists with a fully segregated cycleway on the South Circular road and new cycle lanes on A21.
  • Major improvements to Catford town centre with the creation of new pedestrianised public spaces and business space. 
  • A simplified junction for cars and buses with two way traffic reinstated on the A205 and the A21.

The decision to change layout of the South Circular means the start of a major programme of development in Catford which will create new homes, new jobs and new open spaces.
Steve Bullock, Mayor of Lewisham, said:

‘Moving the South Circular road will transform Catford and make the town centre a better place to live, work and visit. Our decision ends 50 years of uncertainty over the route of the South Circular road and the benefits will be felt for generations. The simplified road layout will make it easier for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers to travel by removing the gyratory.

‘The future for Catford is bright with hundreds of new homes being built, new businesses opening every month and major improvements planned for the shopping centre alongside the improvements to the route of the South Circular road.’

People who live and work in Catford are invited to have their say about the area and the changes they would like to see. Their comments will help Lewisham Council develop a plan to improve the town centre in 2018.

REVIVE #Ladywell Playtower a building on @TheVicSoc ‘at risk’ Top 10!

I love quirky period buildings, ‘they just don’t build um the same anymore‘ and when I heard of the plight of Ladywell Playtower/Baths (a childhood haunt) last year, I asked Council questions, and followed up with meetings with Lewisham’s Deputy Mayor in October – I’m pleased the Council has responded, and renewed our search for a new custodian for this spectacular building.


The London Borough of Lewisham is excited to invite expressions of interest for the development and renewal of Ladywell Playtower.
This grade II listed building represents a fantastic opportunity to revive the character and significance of these historic public baths, and strengthen the character of the St Mary’s Conservation Area. Having been out of use for more than a decade this once important community facility now has an opportunity to serve the needs of the local area.

The site offers close proximity to Ladywell’s bustling village centre and well connected transport links, surrounded by rejuvenated public and open spaces. Nearby Lewisham centre is experiencing rapid change and investment, whilst Catford centre is earmarked for major regeneration works.

The double storey property originally comprised first and second class pool halls located at the front right and rear of the site, with adjoining two storey administration space, slipper baths and function rooms. The rear pool hall was badly damaged in a fire in 2005 but remains standing, and there is space for some car parking on site.

Ladywell Playtower sits adjacent to Ladywell Coroner’s Court and Mortuary, both of which are Grade II listed and have been identified by the Council for future development.

The Council will consider proposals from developers, investors, occupiers and consortia to bring the building back into viable use, subject to the necessary consents and requirements.

If this is something you’re interested in, get in touch here

OPPORTUNITY: Great NEW Meanwhile Use Spaces

As local Councillor for #RusheyGreen in #Catford, I’ve been working with Lewisham Council to look at our high-streets and in particular regenerate Catford Town Centre, that process is now underway. 

As part of this work , The London Borough of Lewisham is inviting meanwhile proposals for a number of properties located in Catford town centre (see below for opportunities)


1) Thomas Lane Depot, Catford, SE6 4RZ

2) 17-18 Catford Broadway, SE6 4SN  

3) The Brookdale Club, Brookdale Road, Catford, SE6

These spaces are located within Catford town centre and offer wide possibilities for diverse, creative, commercial, residential and mixed-used occupation. The hope for these developments is to inject a new burst of life and creativity into some of Catford’s unused spaces, bringing new talent, opportunities & resources to the local area. Developments will help to catalyse the re-invigoration of Catford town centre, and meet Lewisham Council priorities for local regeneration, growth & investment.

A detailed information pack and Expression of Interest (EOI) form is available by request but MUST be returned electronically by the 7th February 2017.

Site visits are available on these dates:

· Friday 13th January: 2pm onwards

· Friday 20th January: all day

· Friday 27th January: all day

 Contact: Jessie Lea MRICS, Senior Programme Manager jessie.lea@lewisham.gov.uk | 0208 314 9256

Grants for community activity in #RusheyGreen, Catford

 Rushey Green Ward – Assembly Fund 2016 -17

On Tuesday evening I had pleasure in launching this years Rushey Green Assembly fund for local community led activities and initiatives, and I’m looking forward to seeing and judging all the applications that come in.

Our funding priorities are:

1. Activities and opportunities for children (under 18) and young people (under 25)

2. Increasing opportunities for older people (55+)

3. Community cohesion – including events, activities and projects designed to create a sense of community in Rushey Green

4. Culture and the arts with particular reference to improving the wellbeing of people in the Rushey Green Area

5. Improving your local area including local ‘streetscape’, environment and ecology

The deadline for completed applications is:

1st September 2016

How to apply:

For an application form and guidance on how to apply, please contact Laura Luckhurst, Community Development Officer:

Email:

laura.luckhurst@lewisham.gov.uk

Tel: ​​020 8314 3830

You can also view and download the application forms and guidance at: http://www.lewisham.gov.uk/localassemblies

Rushey Green Ward Boundary

Every Nuclear Explosion on Earth between 1945-’98

WOW.

2053 nuclear explosions on this small blue planet between 1945 and 1998.

This is quite intense, especially if you’re listening with earphones in.

20131117-125439.jpg

Click here: http://youtu.be/9U8CZAKSsNA

Living Standards and Wages crash under Tory Government

Osbourne says that the Torys saved the economy, but the average person is £1,500 worse off now than in 2010

Osbourne says that the Torys saved the economy, but the average person is £1,500 worse off now than in 2010

under the first 37 of 38 months under Camerson real Wages have fallen

under the first 37 of 38 months under Camerson real Wages have fallen

Since 2010, the rise in wages has been outstripped by the rise in rent

Since 2010, the rise in wages has been outstripped by the rise in rent

The rise in the cost of Heating our homes has been significantly higher than wages

The rise in the cost of Heating our homes has been significantly higher than wages

Cities Are the Future of Human Evolution

From io9

Humans began to live in urban settlements about 7 thousand years ago. As humans continued to evolve over the millennia, so too did our cities. Now, our cities are about to change again — and they’re going to look more like ancient Machu Picchu than the gleaming towers of glass and steel we have today.

Illlustration by Olga Idealist on Deviant Art

As any urban dweller can tell you, the one thing that’s constant in city life is change. Buildings rise up and are torn down; parks bloom out of old train tracks; swimming pools become ice rinks that become arcades and then turn into Whole Foods. For this reason, urban historian Spiro Kostof calls the city a “process.” Cities change with the peoples that live in them, but they are also a repository of history. Even as we relentlessly build new structures, we prefer to remain in these old places where we can live in what’s left of cities and cultures that are hundreds or even thousands of years gone.

Early Cities

Some of the earliest cities, in regions that are now called Turkey, Syria and Peru, were probably built at roughly the same time that humans were developing agriculture. As anthropologist Elizabeth Stone has found, many of the earliest city jobs probably involved farming. In the Mesopotamian cities she studies, people worked in orchards and farms just outside the city walls. These farmers built their homes from mud and brick, and as buildings crumbled into dust, they built new ones on top of the old.

As a result, many of these early cities eroded into mounds of earth over time. But even in their heyday, they would have probably looked a bit like clay boxes atop an earthen mound, surrounded by the plants, trees, and dairy animals that their inhabitants cultivated.

Like the people of the Middle East, the groups who later became the Inca in South America also built cities as an extension of their farms. Living as they did in a mountainous, coastal region, the Inca’s forebears and the Inca themselves had to create agricultural technologies on nearly vertical landscapes. They learned which crops could thrive in valleys, and which would survive in terraced farms that looked like vast steps cut into the slopes of their mountain cities. And they experimented with elaborate irrigation systems that relied on gravity to bring water to their farms.

Is the City Evolving Too Fast?

Over time, many early farm cities grew into political city-states, were swallowed by nations, and eventually became powerhouses for the nineteenth century industrial revolution. Of course many early cities simply died out, and new cities were built that suited emerging forms of human social organization. For most of human history, however, the city was an aberration: the majority of people lived in villages and other small communities.

All that changed in the twenty-first century. In 1800, according to estimates made by the UN, only 3 percent of the world’s population lived in cities. Today, more than half the world’s population lives in urban areas, and by 2050 the UN estimates that will be more like 67 percent. In developed countries, that percentage will be higher.

Homo sapiens is evolving into an urban species. Already, our genomes have been transformed by one development associated with city growth: agriculture. The genes that allow adults to process the lactose in milk from farm animals have spread like wildfire through the population in under 10,000 years — probably because of the tremendous survival advantage in being able to eat the products of animal husbandry.

Still, city life sometimes feels much too crazy and complex for simple hominins like ourselves. Have our own urban creations evolved more quickly than we have? The answer is no. As evolutionary biologist Marlene Zuk has argued:

Neither we nor any other species have ever been a seamless match with the environment. Instead, our adaptation is more like a broken zipper, with some teeth that align and others that gape apart.
Just because our urban environments don’t always feel perfectly comfortable doesn’t mean they aren’t also part of our our ongoing process of adaptation. As I said earlier, the city reflects both human history and our present state. It’s a process, always transforming, but always reflecting who humans are — and who we are becoming.

The Cities of Tomorrow

Now that the majority of humans live in cities, we’re going to be confronting a new set of problems in urban life. For one thing, natural disasters in cities can cause much greater numbers of fatalities than in sparse, rural communities. So the cities of tomorrow will need to be robust against many kinds of disaster, from earthquakes and floods, to radiation bombardment. It’s possible that many cities will built partly under ground, and partly under water. They might even be built inside a single building surrounded by farms. Not only will such structures allow us to conserve space, but layers of earth and water are excellent protection against radiation.

Illustration via Brisbane Architecture Blog

How to grow a biological city of the future

Many future-minded designers and architects believe that cities of the future will survive these kinds of disasters partly by changing the materials we use to build. Instead of dead trees, we’ll use living ones, combined with genetically modified algae and other plants that could purify water and air, as well as provide energy. In a recent book, Rachel Armstrong has described what she calls “living architecture,” where cities are built with semi-living materials that can repair their own cracks and heal themselves when damaged by a quake or just regular wear and tear. She proposes rescuing Venice from drowning by engineering a living reef underneath the city. It would be made with calcium-extruding protocells that latch onto the city’s existing piles, strengthening them and attracting living creatures whose shells will eventually turn into a true ocean reef.

Infographic by Steph Fox. Click to expand.

Is this the city of the future?
A century ago, we imagined futuristic cities full of hulking, steel buildings, their towers… Read…
New York architect David Benjamin has been working on similar ideas with his students at NYU, and with a bio-architecture group called The Living. He told me that he imagines cities of the future could look something like ancient ruins. Modified vines and molds would cover the tall buildings, producing clean water and energy. Their walls would be bumpy and scarred from years of self-healing materials doing their work. But beneath that organic exterior, the city would be humming with smart technologies that allow buildings to communicate with the grid minute-by-minute, modifying how much energy they’re sipping to suit the needs of their residents.

How We’ll Live in a Future Where Cities Have Become Forests
Tomorrow’s cities may be constructed partly out of living materials that produce energy… Read…
In a century, many cities may resemble early urban settlements in another way, too. They’ll be ringed by farms. Urban farming is a movement that is just taking hold in many places, from Havana to Vancouver, but it’s not just about growing food in your backyard. It’s about replacing suburbs with small, sustainable farms that yield a diversity of crops. These farms can cut down on the costs of importing food, and help make cities as self-sustaining as possible. Driving your electric car between futuristic cities might involve taking a long, elevated road over forests.

But the road to these future cities is complicated, and could involve a strange new merger between synthetic biology, city planning, and design. Cities will evolve along with humanity, and humanity for its part will make cities more like living organisms.

Catford Dog Track to be developed by Barratt Homes?

Catford Greyhound Stadium succumbed to the bulldozers after closing nearly a decade ago but the derelict south London site will soon play host to almost 600 homes.

Barratt Developments is in pole position to lead the £50 million redevelopment, creating nearly 1200 jobs and 589 flats and houses, according to Construction News. Reports the Evening Standard

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