Friday 5 November 2010

OPEN goes international with the BBC World Service!

The BBC's World Service investigative journalist, Nina Robinson, came to the OPEN event at St Barnabas Church on 16th September. She has been making a series of four programmes called " Great Expectations: Living in the shadow of London 2012". She explores local peoples' experiences of the build up to 2012 and asks the question "How will regeneration affect those who need it most?".

Nina Robinsons's fourth programme, called "Inspiring real legacy", starts with a recording of Michael Rosen performing 'Regeneration Blues' with The Dulce Tones ( click on the SideBar link to hear the full performance) at the OPEN event. About 16 minutes into the programme, she arrives in Dalston to investigate The Slab. You can listen to the BBC World Service podcast here.

Towards the end of the podcast you can hear our elected official, Councillor Nicholson, who expresses the Council's views about the benefits of The Slab.

He was the one who wrote, back in February 2006 on behalf of Hackney's Mayor, that the Dalston Square development would be "a high design development that is on a human scale". But Hackney's own Director of Regeneration said at the time that TfL's development on The Slab (Dalston Square, Phase 2) was "austere" and "a stark concrete tower with punched openings for windows". TfL's own environmental consultants advised that "all local conservation areas will be adversely affected..there will be loss of traditional and human scale...sunlighting losses will begin to occur as the development progresses...".

TfL's Dalston Square Phase 2 is now under construction on The Slab

Councillor Nicholson also wrote that the Hackney site (Dalston Square Phase 1) scheme would have "Affordable housing as close to 50% of the development that can be afforded that is mixed across the development, not just 'in a corner', and includes 30% family accommodation". But, of the 550 flats granted planning permission for both phases of the Dalston Square scheme, only 5% (28 flats) will be affordable social housing and only 4% (22 flats) would be family size homes (4 beds or over).

So you might want to bear that in mind when you listen to what Councillor Nicholson has to say to the BBC World Service podcast - Part4 "Inspiring real legacy".