Journal Article


From planning to opportunism? Re-examining the creation of the London Docklands Development Corporation

Abstract

East London’s former docklands have been at the centre of planning and regeneration debates for the past four decades. The setting up of the LDDC has been variously interpreted as ‘3-D Thatcherism’ in action, a symbol of the death of comprehensive planning and the replacement of a corporatist, Keynesian era of urban policy with a more neo-liberal approach. Moving away from simplistic and straightforward interpretations of the processes happening at this time, this paper uses new archival and interview material to re-examine the setting up of the LDDC and its early years, revealing a more complex and contradictory picture than existing accounts suggest. It focuses on three themes: changing forms of state intervention; the uncertain ‘break’ in the post-war consensus as evidenced by the changes in approaches to the regeneration of Docklands; and the unintended, disordered process of actual policy change. As such we aim to reveal how shifting visions, modes of governance and practices can compete and co-exist in the midst of seemingly coherent ‘eras’, as Docklands as a place and as an approach to regeneration was constantly made and re-made – a process that continues to this day.

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Authors

Brownill, Sue
O'Hara, Glen

Oxford Brookes departments

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Faculty of Technology, Design and Environment

Dates

Year of publication: 2015
Date of RADAR deposit: 2016-07-22



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